Iphone app?

June 8, 2012


i heard it's on the roadmap...

As I mentioned in a previous thread, seeing DuoLingo (And the adorable owl of course :] ) would boost DuoLingo's popularity by maybe hundreds of times what it is now. Which means better crowdsourcing for translating the web.

@Beardy Don't even mention the idea of DuoLingo becoming a paid service.

@Beardy I hope they choose advertising... It would suck to have free and premium here.

@Beardy but the site itself boasts that it gives everybody an equal opporitunity regardless of socio-economic status

@Beardy: Let me start another thread for this...

Just to be clear, the funding plan (as described in the TED talk) for this is for the translations. That's where the created value comes. Have a corpus of text you want translated from XXXXX to YYYYY, use duolingo and pay less than for "professional" translators.

At such an early stage as duolingo is in, it would be a lot cheaper and less time consuming for them to focus on making their website more mobile-friendly, instead of creating an app for each of the different mobile and tablet platforms (especially Apple products, since Apple charge you $99 a year just to hold a developers license).

While an app environment would feel more fluid and dynamic, the costs of maintaining licenses and the time spent learning the different programming languages used for app development (objective-C, Java, ...,) seems unlikely to happen any time soon, considering duolingo is currently free-to-use*.

* Obviously this is subject to change once the beta is over and the application is public. If duolingo introduce a premium paid scheme, there will be a higher chance for an app. Time will tell; beta is beta.

If Duolingo presents a premium, I will stop using it immediately (even if I am using the free version)

@mikeydee: I'm not saying strictly paid, just a premium scheme along side the free-scheme. I'm not sure what they have in mind in terms of funding, but even if they have investors, eventually they'll have to start self-funding. That funding will either come from premium accounts or through advertising. While this service is awesome that it is currently free, servers aren't; hosting the free service costs them money and eventually they will run out.

@mikeydee: With the huge popularity in ad-blockers, I doubt advertisements would bring in enough money to keep the servers up. Also, premium accounts would be fine. So long as they don't hinder the learning process. There's a huge range of features they could provide to premium accounts while not excluding free users from any lessons. A special 'VIP' badge, enhanced statistics (pie-charts of your data, most active day of the week), beta access to new features before they're released site-wide... I could go on. Either they get funded, or there will be no site for you to use.

@mikeydee: I wasn't really aware of the sort of backing the site had at the time I wrote that and I assumed it was simply just another startup. But still, like I said, the features wouldn't necessarily have to give premium users access to more lessons, just simple aesthetic changes such as a VIP badge. I can appreciate the site's stance on keeping everything 100% free, but unless they can rely strictly on donations I'll be interested to see how they're going to keep the project alive.

Is there news on this application? My friend says she found an app on the iphone but it was a paid app not free. I do not use an iphone, so cannot verfiy, and am not having much look in finding a how-to guide for her

Thank you. It looks like it is free there, so I'm not sure why my friend thinks she would be charged. Are you aware of any instructions about how to install it, so I can print them for her?

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