8 Best Apps to Learn French on your iPhone or iPad

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Do you know how to say 'How are you?' or 'I love you.' in French? Imagine if you could speak well enough to converse with locals in Paris or the South of France. Speaking fluently is within your reach with great apps for learning French on your iPhone or iPad. Whether it's to pass a test or to make friends on vacation, the best French learning apps can be game changers. Allons-y mon ami!

According to a recent study by the investment bank Natixis, French will become the most widely spoken language in the world by 2050. Currently, about 220 million people speak French worldwide, making it the sixth most widely spoken language.

About 45% of modern English words are of French origin. Many international institutions such as the United Nations, the European Union and the International Olympic Committee use French as one of their official languages. French has more than a million words and 20,000 new ones are created every year.

When it comes to the best apps for learning French, there are several considerations. Are you looking for apps that help you succeed in a college or high school French class? The best apps for students should provide verb conjugation, noun gender and grammar. Are you planning a vacation and you want to be able to converse with the locals? If so, you should make sure the app works offline in case you don't have access to Internet. This article will help you find the best apps for your needs.

Learn French +

Learn French + is one of the best ways to become conversation in French. Learn French + minimizes the boring stuff and immerses users in real-life conversations that you can use immediately in the classroom or on a trip. Learn French + includes 101 lessons, 1190 phrases and 3536 exercises to help you become fluent in French.

Understanding French is a good start but speaking is the best way to stay engaged. Learn French + provides advanced speech recognition to help you master pronunciation. You can practice speaking at your own pace until you build the confidence to talk to others. Learn French + is available on iPhone and iPad. It has an excellent review average in the App Store and offers free lessons to try before you buy. Learn French + is an excellent choice for students who want to learn conversational French as fast as possible. Download free in the App Store.


MosaLingua’s learning method is based on several cognitive science and psychology concepts such as the Spaced Repetition System, Active recall and Metacognition. It uses a system of flashcards that requires more effort but is more effective for some students. Before revealing the answer, the app asks you to evaluate your memorizations on a scale of 1 to 4.

MosaLingua introduces phrases gradually with simple structures that apply to most cases. You’ll never have to learn useless phrases such as "My tailor is rich." Instead, the app recommends words or phrases from most used words or phrases based on your specific needs. Download free in the App Store.


Mindsnacks is one of first apps to gain notoriety on iOS. It's not as popular as it once was but it's still a great way to learn French. Mindsnack's games use learning techniques to teach vocabulary, context and grammar. It customizes the curriculum based on your performance to insure the best pace. In addition, you can track your progress across apps using a single login.

Mindsnacks includes 1000 words and phrases, 50 real-world lessons, and a bunch of engaging games. They charge a modest one time fee, making it one of the best values on our list. Download free in the App Store.


Memrise is a good choice if you want to focus on building your French vocabulary. It doesn’t rely heavily on pictures like many other apps. It teaches you using engaging content and humor. The content is crowd sourced instead in addition to being supplemented by linguists. You'll learn useful words and phrases, but also slang words and dialects from actual people.

Memrise claims to be the opposite of textbook learning so that it's engaging and effective. The courses are packed with thousands of video clips of natives speaking in their hometowns. It's best for people who want to learn from natives instead of language professionals. Download free in the App Store.

Learn French by Brainscape

According to Brainscape, students waste a huge portion of their time learning French with outdated and inefficient methods. That is why their founder, Andrew Cohen, developed a technique called Intelligent Cumulative Exposure (ICE) so people can master conversational French in weeks instead of months.

Learn French includes a tailored curriculum that guides you from beginner to conversational at your own pace. The lessons provide the equivalent of 4 years of high school French class packed into one app. Over 10,000 audio flashcards allow you to learn the most common French words, phrases, and sentence constructions in an efficient and engaging manner. Statistics and visualization tools to help you track your progress. Brainscape is best for students who want to learn conversational French fast and appreciate flashcard based learning. Try if for free on your iPhone or Android. Download free in the App Store.


Duolingo draws inspiration from games to make learning fun. It takes the concept of gamification by starting you off on lessons to learn vocabulary such as man, woman, boy and girl. Other exercises help you learn fruits and animals. Duolingo typically displays pictures and words to make learning visual. After each lesson you gain points you can use in case you run out of health.

Students get lots of positive feedback and the app is amusing. However, several prominent language experts have questioned it's effectiveness. Duolingo claims that users can learn a language free forever, but charges a monthly fee to users who want premium content. Duolingo is best for young learners who like games. Download free in the App Store.

French Translator Dictionary +

This app is an excellent complement to other apps and learning materials. It includes an accurate translator and comprehensive offline dictionary. While phrases are essential to learning a language, students spend a lot of looking up words. Unlike other translators, French Translator Dictionary + gives many translations and usage examples. Another challenging area for students is mastering verb conjugations. This app shines in this area as well by offering over 400,000 verb forms accessible from the translator and the dictionary.

Students and teachers alike will appreciate the vocabulary quizzes and flashcards to help learners improve their vocabulary. French Translator + is the best app for students who require good reference tools to succeed in class. It offers a customizable phrasebook and dictionary that are useful for traveller. It's an excellent compliment to other apps in this article. Download free in the App Store.


Busuu is quite unique in that it has an active community of users to help you practice speaking French. Busuu app is also based on the the Common European Framework of Reference for languages, so it has a strong foundation. Lesson generally start with dialogue and exercise, then progress to speaking with native speakers.

Busuu is comprehensive in the number of topics it provides. It's best for students who want to interact with other students in addition to learning on their own. Download free in the App Store.

If we missed one of your favorite apps for learning French, even if it's your own, don't hesitate to email us at outreach@vidalingua.com.

Interested in language and travel? Check out these articles.
- French Verb Conjugation
- French Slang Words and Phrases
- Top Online French Tutors
- French Love Words and Sayings
- Best Language Schools in Paris

Have you written an article about travel or language that you think we should link to? Email outreach@vidalingua.com to let us know.

Happy learning!

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Harold Gretouce

Harold Gretouce
Teacher - Instituteur
Lycée Française de New York

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