Best mobile apps to learn Turkish

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Matthew Hillier

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Have you ever considered learning Turkish?

Maybe you're planning to visit Turkey for a vacation or you already live there - either way it's worth learning this beautiful language that is spoken by over 80 million people around the world.

The importance of learning Turkish

The number of foreign visitors to Turkey is rising each year. In 2022, Turkey saw 44 million visitors, and the government is projecting 90 million by 2028.

There are a number of reasons why Turkey is a popular travel destination, stunning natural landscapes and a vibrant culture being amoung them. Knowing the language will help you better understand and appreciate the country's history, people, and customs.

Turkey is situated at the crossroads of Europe and Asia, making it an important hub for business and trade. Companies that do business in this region often require employees who can speak Turkish fluently. By learning Turkish, you'll have access to new job opportunities and be better equipped to communicate with clients or partners in Turkey.

If you are staying in Turkey long-term and don't learn any Turkish, it'll really limit your ability to make friends. Daily tasks such as paying bills, asking directions and relating to neighbours will be difficult might leave you frustrated.

There are lots of mobile apps out there, but not all of them include the Turkish language. So what are the best apps available for learning Turkish?

The best apps to learn Turkish

I've been learning Turkish for a while now. After reviewing various Turkish learning apps, my top six picks are:

  • Duolingo
  • Italki
  • Babbel
  • Rosetta Stone
  • Memrise
  • Tandem

Each app has its own unique set of features and benefits that can aid in learning the language effectively. Most come with a free option, or a trial period, so you can download them today and test each one.

Language app Duolingo

Duolingo: Fun and game-like learning experience

Duolingo offers a fun and game-like approach to language learning that appeals to users of all ages. The app is user-friendly and has an intuitive interface that makes it easy for beginners to start learning Turkish. With daily practice, users can improve their reading, writing, speaking and listening skills.

Duolingo's features

Users can set daily goals, track their progress through a language tree structure, and earn points for correct answers.

The app uses voice recognition technology to help learners improve their speaking skills by providing instant feedback on pronunciation accuracy.

To maximize your learning experience on Duolingo, it's essential to use the app regularly and consistently. Set achievable daily goals based on your schedule and stick to them.

Helpful tip

My wife and I both use Duolingo daily. It is an excellent choice for those who want an engaging way to learn Turkish vocabulary. It does lack in teaching the actual theory behind the language, such as grammar principles.

The pace of learning is also quite slow. If you're spending half your week learning language, with just Duolingo it'd really drag on - it's designed for short but repeated use. This is why we view mobile apps as an additional tool in learning language - not the only tool. Combining an app with an online course or in-person tutor is a good way to go.

italki language learning app

Italki: Practise online with a Turkish tutor

Italki is an online language learning platform that connects language learners with native speaking teachers from around the world. With over 10 million users, Italki has become one of the most popular and effective language learning platforms available today.

Turkish is a complex and fascinating language that requires attention to grammar and pronunciation. What makes Italki stand out as an excellent platform for learning Turkish is its large pool of experienced native speakers who can help you master this complex tongue.

Italki's features

Italki provides a convenient way to learn from the comfort of your own home while interacting with real people.

With more than 3,000 Turkish teachers on the platform offering lessons at competitive rates, you are sure to find a teacher who fits your schedule and budget.

You have control over your learning process. This means that you can choose teachers who fit your learning style, schedule lessons around your busy lifestyle, and set goals that are tailored to your individual needs.

Thanks to the nature of language exchange platforms like Italki, you’ll be able to practice both speaking and listening with native speakers on a regular basis. This isn’t just a great way to improve in these areas, but also gives you opportunities for cultural immersion as well.

Babbel language learning app

Babbel: Customizable lessons for personalized learning

Babbel is an innovative language app that offers customizable lessons tailored to your learning style. It provides a comprehensive overview of the Turkish language, including its grammar rules and vocabulary. Babbel's interactive courses cover essential topics for everyday communication.

The app focuses on building learners' conversational skills and helps them develop their comprehension of spoken words.

Babbel’s features

The app aims to provide learners with the tools they need to start speaking from day one, with a variety of exercises and activities that make the learning process fun and engaging.

While other apps may emphasize reading and writing skills or gamify the experience, Babbel puts communication first.

A unique aspect of Babbel is its use of speech recognition technology, which helps learners perfect their pronunciation by listening to their own voice as they speak.

The immersive nature of the exercises allows users to practice listening comprehension while honing their speaking skills.

Many users enjoy using Babbel for its practical approach, some may find it less appealing than gamified experiences offered by other platforms. Because conversation is emphasized over grammar rules, some users may feel that they need more instruction in grammar rules before they can confidently speak. However, as with any language learning app, practice is key and Babbel can help you get there.

Rosetta Stone language learning app

Rosetta Stone: Immersive language learning experience

Rosetta Stone is known for its immersive approach to language learning. The app uses pictures, audio recordings and native speakers' videos to help users develop their comprehension skills in Turkish.

Rosetta Stone's features

Rosetta Stone's approach is based on the principle that language learning should be similar to the way we learn our first language as children. This means that instead of memorizing grammar rules and vocabulary lists, you'll be immersed in the language through interactive lessons and real-life scenarios.

The app uses a variety of techniques to help reinforce the language and improve retention, including speech recognition technology, interactive exercises, grammar lessons, and cultural insights.

One of the key advantages of using Rosetta Stone for learning Turkish is its emphasis on immersion and interaction. By focusing on real-life situations and conversational skills from the start, you'll be able to practice speaking, listening, reading, and writing in a way that feels natural.

The app provides instant feedback on your pronunciation through its speech recognition feature. This helps you identify areas where you can improve your speaking skills and refine your accent over time.

Some users may find Rosetta Stone's approach too challenging or frustrating, particularly if they prefer a more structured or traditional method of language learning. Additionally, the app can be quite expensive compared to other options, which may make it less accessible to some learners. While it may not be the best fit for everyone, its unique teaching methodology and emphasis on real-world language skills make it a powerful tool for anyone looking to improve their Turkish abilities.

Memrise language learning app

Memrise: Memorable visual repetition-based approach

Memrise offers a memorable visual repetition-based approach to language learning which helps strengthen memory retention while making it feel like you're simply playing a game on your phone! Their platform incorporates mnemonic devices where learners can create their own associations with words they’re trying to learn so they can remember more easily later on.

Memrise features

The app uses what they call "mems" - user-generated mnemonic devices - to help you remember vocabulary words and phrases.

One of the benefits of using Memrise for learning Turkish is that it offers a lot of user-generated content. This means that the app has courses created by native speakers, as well as courses created by other users who are also learning Turkish. This gives users access to a variety of perspectives on the language and culture.

Memrise can be an entertaining way to supplement your Turkish language studies with its gamified approach and extensive user-generated content library.


Tandem: Practice conversations with native speakers

Tandem helps you practice your conversational skills by connecting you with native speakers who are also interested in learning your language. This app offers a great way to practice your pronunciation, grammar, and vocabulary in a realistic setting with real people.

Tandem's features

What makes Tandem unique compared to other language exchange apps is its focus on building long-term relationships between learners and native speakers.

You can choose to have regular conversation sessions with your partner, which allows you to build rapport and establish a comfortable learning environment. You can also choose that partner based on shared interests or hobbies.

Turkish pronunciation can be challenging for many learners, but practicing speaking regularly with native speakers through Tandem can help you improve quickly. You'll get immediate feedback on your pronunciation and grammar errors, giving you the opportunity to correct them in real-time.

Tandem allows you to practice sentence construction and common phrases used by native speakers that you might not necessarily find in textbooks or traditional lessons.

Tandem is an excellent app for improving your speaking skills in Turkish. By connecting with native speakers for conversation practice, you'll gain confidence in your ability to communicate effectively and learn about Turkish culture and daily life at the same time.

How mobile apps can aid in language learning

Mobile apps have really changed the way people learn language. They provide easy access to language learning materials anytime, anywhere without the need for traditional textbooks or classroom instruction. One of the benefits of mobile apps is that many of them use advanced technologies like speech recognition software and interactive games to make language acquisition more engaging and effective.

Another reason to consider using a mobile app to learn language is that you'll be able to customize your own study plan to suit your schedule, goals or pace of study by selecting individual lessons or skills based on your learning preferences.

When people first start learning language, they often have a specific textbook or approach in mind. Before you dive deep into the vocabulary and grammer of Turkish, it's worth having a look to see what resources are out there.

Modern technology can make learning language less-hard.

Advantages of mobile apps

I've found learning Turkish to be a challenging but rewarding experience, and mobile apps can make it accessible wherever you are. The advantages of using mobile apps for learning language are numerous – they're convenient, cost-effective, interactive and engaging.

By practicing daily on your phone, you can build up your skills over time and learn Turkish at your own pace.

Got a spare 10 minutes on the bus? Ignore Facebook. Open your language app.

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