Learning new languages is not only fun, but useful too. However, learning new languages can be difficult sometimes, especially if you're always on the move, or if you don't have the time to take language classes. Also, not to mention the fact that classes like these can cost quite a lot. Fortunately, there are many free and/or low cost apps, that could help you achieve your goals. Your phone is always with you, so why shouldn't you learn a new language while you're traveling to work?
Here's a list of some apps that could help you expand your knowledge and skills.
Duolingo is a free app which you can use to translate written content into your language (blogs, news, articles, etc.). At the same time, you're helping the translation of the web. Other users can rate your translation, so you'll always be able to know if you got it all right.
Duolingo currently supports French, German, Spanish, Portuguese, and Italian.
Busuu is an app that'll help you learn the language with the help of interactive courses and lessons. Busuu lessons vary from beginners to advanced. It's community is quite great, and you'll have support if you're having some difficulties. Busuu has 150 different daily topics, as well as the video learning material. However, Busuu gives you only 20 free lessons, and you'll have to pay for the rest if you're satisfied with it. But, there are also many many different things you can do for free.
Busuu currently supports French, English, German, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Russian, Japanese, Chinese, Turkish, and Polish.
Anki is a language learning app that many language learners recommend. Anki is flashcard based, so you can put any language you want. With Anki you put the words or phrases in the app, and then you go through those cards. When a certain card pops up, you can pick you knowledge level for that certain word or phrase (hard, easy, etc.). It's quite simple actually, just like learning in the good old days. After you remember a word or phrase, the card gets sorted back into the deck. The better you know a word or a phrase, the longer the time until you see it again.
Memrise is not just a language learning app, but it can also be used for learning geography or history. This app will help you create "mems". Mems are basically meme like pictures that will help you learn a word in an easier way. Some people think that funny mems are the best, because learning is so much easier if it's fun. However, don't get scared just yet. You don't have to make your own mems if you don't want to, because you're able to use other peoples' mems.
Memrise currently supports English, German, Italian, French, Swedish, Finnish, Polish, and Japanese.
LingQ is an app where you read and listen to texts. Whenever you come across an unknown word, you just have to click on it, and the app tells you what it is. You're able to set your grades from 1 to 5, meaning how well you know the word. After that, whenever you come across a word in another text, the word will be highlighter, which means that you have already seen that word before, and that you should probably know it. If you set the word option to "known", then the word won't be highlighted.
Your vocabulary gets bigger with more and more texts you read and listen. However, this app is not totally free. You'll have to pay a monthly fee if you want to use this app's advanced features, such as listening to the text.
LingQ currently supports German, English, Russian, Spanish, Italian, Swedish, Japanese, Chinese, Korean, and Portuguese. There also many beta languages.
If you have your own idea for language learning app, be sure to have at least 18 weeks at your disposal and a good app building crew.