Mondly Review (2021) // Learn Chinese with a Chatbot

Should You Download Mondly (in 2021)

Mondly Review
Mondly Review

Welcome to another app review by LTL!

Learning Chinese with apps is a great way to improve and learn new vocabulary in a fun and easy way.

At LTL we always try to find new Chinese learning resources to make our students’ studies more diverse and even more enjoyable.

That can include songs, movies, TV shows or smartphone applications.

Today we take a look at Mondly, a popular award winning language learning app.

#1 Mondly Review – What is Mondly?

#2 Mondly Review – The Interface

#3 Mondly Review – How does it work?

#4 Mondly Review – The Exercises

#5 Mondly Review – The Chatbot

#6 Mondly Review – Conclusion

DISCOUNT KLAXON – Big Mondly Discount

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#1 Mondly Review – What is Mondly?

mondly review
Mondly – Choose your languages

As mentioned before, Mondly is a very popular language learning app, which was launched in 2014 that now offers courses for 33 languages, including Mandarin Chinese.

Mondly have received a lot of recognition since launching, and was chosen as the “Editor’s Choice” by Google App Store and named “Best New App” by Apple.

Not only does Mondly help you learn new vocabulary, it also teaches phrase structures you how to create full sentences.

Their Chatbot with speech recognition features will also help you improve your speaking skills.

Mondly Languages is their main app, however the developers also created a version for children aged 5 to 12 called Mondly for Kids.

They also created MondlyVR, a language learning app based on virtual reality which is compatible with VR devices. It features an avatar teacher giving feedback and correcting pronunciation thanks to the chatbot and speech recognition technology.

How to start learning on Mondly?

Mondly is available on both mobile and desktop, so choose your preferred platform and download the app/open their website.

You will be asked what language you speak, and what language you wish to learn as well as your actual level in that language.

Start the tutorial to have a look at how the app works and what kind of exercises they offer, you will then be able to start the actual lessons.

GOOD TO KNOW – You don’t have to sign up if you don’t want to, however doing so enables the app to save your progress, streaks and achievements.

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#2 – Mondly Review – The Interface

Mondly Review (2020)
Mondly Review – The Interface

The interface on mobile and desktop are the same, aside from the screen layout.

We will focus here on the mobile version of the app.

Whilst other apps such as Lingodeer or Duolingo mainly use illustrations and cute icons in their app, Mondly actually uses real images of people, landscapes and objects, giving a different feel to the app.

When finishing the tutorial we are faced with five options in the bottom bar of the screen, as follow:

  • Categories – what we can call the main page
  • Lessons – the list of lessons learned or to learn
  • Statistics – check your progress
  • Leaderboard – compare your progress with other users
  • Shop – sign up to a premium plan

Whatever section you are in, you will find two icons on the top of your screen:

On the top left corner, is the icon to access your settings and profile. Change your preferences, set study reminders and modify your account here.

On the top right corner, is a crown icon to access the different subscriptions plans and become a premium member.

What are the benefits of being a Premium member?

Mondly is a free app but you’ll need a premium membership to have unlimited access to all the lessons and exercises.

With a Premium membership you will have access to all 33 languages, when only 1 is available to learn with the free version. It also includes premium access to Mondly for Kids and MondlyVR as well.

Click the crown icon on the top right corner of the screen or the ‘SHOP’ section in the bottom bar to have a look at the premium plans available.

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#3 Mondly Review – How does it work?

Mondly Review - Categories
Each category has around 8 lessons

The app is pretty straight forward and it is easy to follow one’s progress.

CATEGORIES – In the ‘categories’ section click on a category and select a lesson to study. A number of stars will appear once the lesson completed to show how you did, you can redo any lesson as many times as you want.

Each category will have around 8 lessons, including a conversation and vocabulary section.

It will also show how long the lesson is estimated to take, as well as how many words and phrases to learn are included.

Mondly creates a daily lesson, especially for you, depending on what you previously learned. You will find it in the categories section.

In addition to this, in the categories you will also have access to the Chatbot, a very nice feature I will talk about in more detail later.

LESSONS – You will find in this section the list of all the lessons you have studied and have to learn. By clicking on one category in particular, you will see the lessons you’ve completed and how much time you spent on them.

You can also access your daily lesson here, and see when you’ll be able to do the next one, as a 10 hour wait is needed between two of them.

However, you can redo them as well, which is nice since the exercises change a bit each time even though the content stay the same.

STATISTICS – This is where you can check your progress.

Check your level and how many days and minutes you studied, see how many words and phrases you learned so far.

Each day you log in, you will get a new bonus. The more days in a row you log in, the bigger the reward.

The interesting part of this section is the animated illustration of a mapped brain, with coloured dots. When clicking on one dot, we are zoomed in the brain and can look all the words we studied, with characters, pinyin and translation.

LEADERBOARD – In this section you will be able to see where you rank compared to other users all over the world.

Choose between the three tabs: friends, actual localisation and global to compare your points and logged in days.

You can invite friends to join you on the Mondly, but if you logged in through Facebook you will see who uses the app as well.

#4 Mondly Review – The Exercises

The most important thing to know is that depending on your level (beginner, intermediate, advanced) the lessons will be different.

Intermediate and advanced levels will make you skip the actual lessons and you will directly start with the exercises.

Choosing the intermediate level myself while creating my account, I was surprised to not have actual lessons but only exercises.

You should definitely choose the beginner level if you feel you really need to go through a lesson first.

The types of exercises are pretty diverse, for example:

  • Select the corresponding image according to the given word
  • Translate the sentence
  • Select the correct translation in the list
  • Tap the microphone and say the following sentence

TOP TIP – During an exercise, on the top right corner of your screen, tap the icon to change between Pinyin and Chinese characters.

The speech recognition feature

In the exercise called “translate the sentence” it is possible to translate the sentence by selecting the right characters in the given options OR writing it yourself if you have a Chinese keyboard already set up on your smartphone.

If not, you can also hold on the microphone icon on the right down corner of your screen, to actually SAY the sentence.

There are also exercises solely dedicated to your speaking abilities, where you have to tap on the microphone and repeat a sentence.

That’s an amazing feature lacking in most language learning apps, setting Mondly above the others.

And that directly leads me to my next chapter.

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#5 Mondly Review – The Chatbot

Mondly Review - Chatbot
Mondly Review – Chatbot

As mentioned just above, Mondly boasts a great speech recognition feature that definitely puts it in a great position as one of the better Chinese learning apps to improve one’s speaking skills.

Mondly dedicates a whole category only for the speaking aspect of the language, the CHATBOT that you can find in the ‘categories’ section of the app.

TOP TIP – Switch between pinyin and characters by clicking the icon in the top right corner

The Chatbot category offers 8 topics ranging from ‘hello‘ to taxi’, including others such as ‘appointment’ and ‘hotel’.

The Chatbot takes the aspect of an instant messaging feature such as WeChat or Whatsapp, allowing you to speak to a virtual person.

The bot talks, and you are presented with several answer options. You can listen to them, check their pinyin and translation and hold the microphone button to speak and send them.

Choosing between the 3 or 4 answers is pretty easy, and so far the speech recognition feature worked well while I was sticking to the options.

But then I thought, what if I use another sentence to convey the same message?

Here is an example. To the sentence 我很高兴见到您 (wǒ hěn gāoxìng jiàn dào nín, I am happy to meet you) from the bot, I was offered three options I could say:

  • 很高兴认识你。你好吗?Hěn gāoxìng rènshì nǐ. Nǐ hǎo ma?
  • 我很高兴见到你。Wǒ hěn gāoxìng jiàn dào nǐ.
  • 你好,很高兴见到你。 Nǐ hǎo, hěn gāoxìng jiàn dào nǐ.

I chose to answer with a slightly adjusted reply to test the bot and said: 我也很高兴认识你,你怎么样?(wǒ yě hěn gāoxìng rènshì nǐ, nǐ zěnme yàng?)

It worked and the conversation went on. But I needed to try more.

To the bot’s question: 您最喜欢的运动是什么?(nín zuì xǐhuān de yùndòng shì shénme, What is your favourite sport) I was offered three sports I could answer:

  • 跳水 tiàoshuǐ – Diving
  • 保龄球 bǎolíngqiú – Bowling
  • 棒球 bàngqiú – Baseball

But instead I said I didn’t like sports, 我不喜欢做运动 (wǒ bù xǐhuān zuò yùndòng). The bot replied he didn’t understand 我不明白 (wǒ bù míngbái) and repeated the question once again.

It is possible to offer slight variations of answers and a sport not in the list would have worked fine, but other sentences don’t work.

I tried a few times and it always answered with “please repeat”, “please talk slowly” always repeating the question, so it shows the chatbot still has a set course and it is not possible to improvise and have a spontaneous conversation with the user.

#6 Mondly Review – Conclusion

mondly review
Mondly Review – Conclusion

The biggest strength of the Mondly is its Chatbot and speech recognition feature.

Even if the conversations with the Chatbot are a bit limited, being able to speak Chinese and have the bot recognise what you say is a great feature that helps improve one’s speaking ability, which is not easy to do and not offered in many apps.

So, Mondly… bravo!

The downside of the app would be that intermediate and advanced learners still have to take the beginners’ lessons, even though they only have to do the exercises.

The best option would have been to make them skip a few lessons and start learning more advanced vocabulary instead of having to review everything from the start.

Also, there isn’t enough free content to keep using the app for long, so users will need to subscribe to progress further.

However, being a premium member gives access to a large number of categories as well as other companion apps so it might be worth it.

Mondly Score: 8.5/10

Where to download the app?

Mondly is available on both the Apple Store and Google Play Store, as well as on desktop.

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Have you ever used Mondly? Do you like it? You are more than welcome to share your review with us in the comments below.

See our FULL list of websites to learn Chinese.

WANT A BIG MONDLY DISCOUNT?

Oh yes, only the best for our followers!

We’ve teamed up with Mondly themselves and got you an absolute gem of an offer.

How about this – 90% OFF Mondly!

Instead of spending 480EUR for the year with Mondly, with us you spend just 48EUR a year!


Learn Chinese with a Chatbot – FAQ’s

What is Mondly?

Mondly is a language learning app available in 33 languages, including Mandarin Chinese.

The app focuses on vocabulary and phrases that are useful in a day to day settings, and allows three different levels: beginner, intermediate and advanced.

There is a free version as well as a premium one, allowing unlimited access to all the lessons and other companion apps, Mondly for Kids and MondlyVR.

How to use Mondly?

Mondly is available on both mobile and desktop, so choose your preferred platform and download the app/open their website.

Choose what language you speak, what language you wish to learn and that’s it! Start the tutorial to see how everything works.

You don’t even have to sign up if you don’t want to, but we recommend you do it to save your progress.

How can Mondly help me learn Chinese?

Mondly helps you to learn and review Chinese vocabulary and sentences, however the most useful feature of the app is definitely the Chatbot.

The Chatbot uses a speech recognition technology that allows you to speak Chinese, answer questions in a real conversation type setting and complete oral exercises to improve your Mandarin speaking skills.

Where can I download Mondly?

Mondly is available on both the Apple Store and Google Play Store, as well as on desktop.

Mondly on the Apple Store

Mondly on the Google Play Store

Mondly’s website

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  • LTL Avatar Irene Magnosi
    Irene Magnosi , Student Advisor

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