Learning Spanish is easier than ever before. There has never been a better time to learn a new language, even if you are on a tight budget or keep a full schedule.
Thanks to the multitude of learning apps available, you can get language practice or instruction right on your phone—making it simple to fit in language practice on the train, on your lunch break, or anywhere else where you find a spare 20 minutes.
I have dedicated most of my adult life to learning languages myself and sharing what I’ve discovered about how to learn languages with others. In the process, I’ve come to realize that it won’t matter what approach you take to learning a language if you can’t stick to the routine.
Keep that in mind as you read through this list of apps—find what works for you and keeps you excited about your new language. That enthusiasm will keep you motivated more than any particular app or program.
Apps For Learning Spanish
Not all of the apps on this list are specifically designed to teach you Spanish. Many are multi-language apps or a way to track and practice any content you choose.
Many people find success using a combination of apps to meet different needs.
That’s not to say there aren’t plenty of language apps here. Most language apps include a Spanish option because Spanish is one of the most popular languages for students in the world.
Here are some of the best:
This app focuses on teaching you useful phrases in a repetitive, flashcard-style system. Another thing I like about Mosalingua is that you have complete control over which phrases you learn, letting you personalize your study to match your experience and the situations in which you use Spanish most.
LingQ features Spanish content from multiple platforms, including videos and audiobooks.
In fact, it has some of the best reading material on any Spanish learning app.
You can even import your own content and filter by level of difficulty.
Each of these personalization options make LingQ appealing no matter where you are in your Spanish language learning because there is something for everyone, from beginners to experts.
Busuu is designed to teach vocabulary and grammar to Spanish students at multiple levels of skill.
Beginner and early intermediate Spanish students will find material that suits them on this app.
Tapping into the psychology of learning, Busuu also helps you set a daily goal and (with the premium version of the app) study plan.
LingoDeer taps into the benefit of fun with its engaging game-based lessons.
The variety of lesson types allows you to try more than one approach to learning Spanish.
While LingoDeer is known primarily for its Asian language lessons, it includes Spanish (as well other languages such as German and French) in its lesson catalogue.
Pimsleur is a respected, comprehensive language program based on research on how memory works.
The Pimsleur method gets you speaking languages quickly by, among other things, deliberately limiting vocabulary to the core words that matter most for communication at your current level.
Pimsleur language programs are not free. But the app does offer a monthly plan, so you don't need to pay for the entire program at once.
#6 Rosetta Stone
Rosetta Stone is another well-known company with a long history of teaching learners of many languages.
One approach that sets the Rosetta Stone app apart from many others on this list is that it teaches Spanish in Spanish, rather than in English (or another native language).
Rosetta Stone also employs tutors for private lessons, allowing you to practice speaking right away.
Speechling is dedicated to getting you speaking Spanish fluently by having you repeat Spanish phrases.
You also receive feedback on everything from pronunciation to intonation and word choice.
If your goal is conversational fluency but you aren’t quite ready to dive in with a language exchange, Speechling can fill the gap.
In the next section, I'll focus on those apps that are designed to improve your Spanish vocabulary. If you're a word nerd, then this next set of apps is for you.
Apps For Practicing Spanish Vocabulary
SpanishDict is one of the most frequently visited Spanish-English dictionaries online.
Their app includes all of the same examples and definitions as well as vocabulary games and audio recordings of common phrases.
Parts of the dictionary are even available offline, which is an added bonus if you will be travelling or are short on data.
#9 Brainscape Flashcards
This flashcards app allows you to make your own flashcards or use premade flashcard decks.
Brainscape is so confident in their spaced-repetition system that they claim you can learn four years’ worth of Spanish classes in just months using their app.
Ongoing feedback and statistics help keep you moving forward with your language goals.
Memrise is a hugely popular vocabulary app for good reason—it combines spaced repetition with vocabulary games.
This is another app that allows community members to submit lessons.
While the quality of lesson will vary, the large number of Memrise users worldwide has led to a large library of lessons, many of which are quite good.
#11 Flashcards Deluxe
Flashcards Deluxe is one of the best flashcard apps available for practicing vocabulary, including learning Spanish with a language other than English (Spanish to German flashcards, for example).
You can read a full review of Flashcards Deluxe here, including a rundown of my favorite features.
One of these features is the ability to indicate how well you know specific words as you practice. The SRS/Leitner system helps move your words to long-term memory and is completely customizable.
Drops is not overly complicated or customizable, making it less effective than the other vocabulary apps on this list.
That said, it is one of the most visually appealing, which adds significantly to its appeal. It doesn’t matter how great an app is if you don’t use it.
And the clean interface has helped keep Drops competitive for what it is as a supplemental vocabulary app.
So that's it for the vocab apps. Now the moment you've been waiting for – I'll reveal three apps that will help your improve your speaking skills in Spanish by connecting with native Spanish speakers from home.
Apps for Connecting With Native Spanish Speakers
This app pairs language learners together for “in person” practice anywhere around the world.
Tandem lets you scroll through user profiles and choose the way you want to converse—via text, audio/video call, or with an audio message.
These options are great if you're a little shy or nervous about interacting with native speakers. You can start off with text or voices messages and then move onto audio or video calls when you're feeling more at ease in Spanish.
HelloTalk is another app that lets you chat with native speakers in over 100 languages (including Spanish).
All conversations happen in the app, so there is no need to share Google or Skype info.
HelloTalk also includes translation and voice recognition features to help you communicate even more effectively. There is even a local search option so you can find people to practice with in person if you prefer.
iTalki is a website I’ve used many times to connect with language tutors when I’m learning a new language in a place where I can’t find people to practice with in person.
Whether you’re living somewhere without a large population of native Spanish speakers or your schedule doesn’t allow you to connect with a tutor in person, iTalki’s app lets you access the same great benefits directly from your smartphone.
They even have options for writing corrections so you can get feedback on your writing from native Spanish speakers.
What Makes A Great Spanish Language Learning App?
Spanish is one of the most common languages around the world, so there are plenty of apps to choose from. There is no perfect Spanish learning app, but some are certainly better than others. Learning a language is more about habit than the actual curriculum.
In order to figure out which apps are best for learning Spanish, consider the following:
The ability to set a reminder or have another form of accountability—reminders, notifications, etc.—can help keep you on track with your language goals. Looks for apps that were designed with an understanding of psychology and aim to keep you accountable.
Some Spanish apps focus on vocabulary, others target speaking practice, while others still use games to keep users entertained. Before you download an app and commit to using it for Spanish training, ask yourself what you’re looking for in an app.
- Will it be a primary Spanish resource for you? Or simply a backup activity when you have downtime during the day?
- What goals are you hoping to meet with the app?
Finding an app with a focus that matches your own will make you more successful.
The best apps will give you feedback, so you know how to improve based on your specific strengths and weak spots. Look for an app with dynamic adjustments (the difficulty changes based on how well you perform). Or feedback from actual native speakers.
This kind of personalization really helps. It helps you use your time effectively and keeps you from forming bad habits in pronunciation or usage.
Final Thoughts On The Best Apps For Learning Spanish
There’s never been a better time to be learning Spanish thanks to the wealth of resources available right from your phone.
It’s important to remember that no matter what app(s) you choose, language learning does not require a particular skill. Instead, it’s all about setting up the best conditions for learning.
Building a language learning routine that keeps you practicing your language is going to matter more than whether you learn the vosotros or save that for a trip to Spain.
With that in mind, give a few of the apps on this list a try. Most offer a free version or trial, giving you the chance to figure out which approach works best for you. Before long, you’ll be making the most of what’s available without the time commitment or cost of a school.
That said, an app won't do the hard work for you of speaking the language.
You can't get fluent in Spanish just by using an app.
For that, you'll need something more comprehensive. That's why I created…
Spanish Uncovered is my comprehensive beginner programme teaches you to speak Spanish using my unique StoryLearning® method.
It's not an app, but you can still use it on ANY device – computer, laptop, smartphone or tablet.
Thanks to StoryLearning, you learn Spanish through a fun and natural method that makes learning a pleasure, and grammar a breeze!
It goes far deeper than the Spanish smartphone apps listed above and will give you a very thorough grounding in Spanish.
You see, language apps might appear flashy and modern…
But they lack the depth you need to truly master Spanish.
The only way to achieve a high level of Spanish is to immerse yourself in the language! And that's what you do in Uncovered by learning through story from Day 1.
With stories, you can:
- Learn Spanish faster through immersion, instead of rote learning
- Memorise vocabulary more easily, by seeing it in context
- Learn grammar naturally, not through rules!
- Understand Spanish more easily, thanks to lots of reading and listening practice
To find out more about Spanish Uncovered or to enrol in the programme, click here.