Spoken by 4.6 million people worldwide, Finnish is a beautiful language that’s got a rich and vibrant history. It’s not exclusively spoken in Finland, with speakers across Russia, Estonia, and Sweden, as well as plenty of Finns living overseas.
So, with plenty of people speaking the language, what apps can you use to help you learn Finnish in a speedy and effective way? Let’s dive in and find out!
The Best Apps to Learn Finnish
So, one of the easiest ways to learn a new language nowadays is by using one of the many handy language-learning apps. There are a lot of options, so try and few and see which ones work for you.
Okay, so let’s start with a well-known classic. Duolingo is probably the most popular language-learning app on the planet – and with good reason! Featuring a ton of gamification, leaderboards, and native-recorded audio resources, it’s the perfect package to get to grips with Finnish.
The app features built-in nudges that keep reminding you to practice no matter where you are.
These reminders can be pretty intense, and they’ve actually become the source of many, many memes over the years, but it does make it hard to forget to do your Finnish language learning sessions.
If you’re looking for something similar to Duolingo but with more focus on conversational language, why not check out Ling?
There are a lot of quizzes, fill-the-gap exercises, and flashcards, but there are also conversational comprehensions at the end of each five-minute session. It’s the perfect way to round off the lesson and challenge yourself a little bit more.
There is a premium version of Ling that you can subscribe to, the same as most of the free language learning apps, that’ll enable you to access longer lessons, more resources, and more than just one five-minute lesson per day.
That being said, if you’re looking for something short and snappy that you can commit to doing every day, this is an easy option that takes up no time at all.
Want to improve all four of your core Finnish language learning skills at the same time? WordDive has been developed by psychologists and language learning experts to create an app that works with how your brain actually takes in and absorbs new knowledge.
Covering reading, writing, speaking, and listening skills, WordDive is one of the most comprehensive Finnish language learning apps out there at the moment.
One of the best parts about WordDive is the AI integration that picks up on your language learning habits, like speed, and tailors new lessons and content according to you.
It’s as close to a bespoke learning app as you’re going to get without going for a more expensive, one-on-one option like iTalki.
Having trouble getting to grips with the tricky Finnish grammar rules and verb conjugations? Check out Mondly, which uses gamification and authentic, native-speaking, audio clips to help you learn real-life, conversational Finnish.
This app helps you with all four language learning techniques, which gives you a super well-rounded education.
Whether you’re building up your vocabulary techniques, brushing up on your listening skills through your headphones, or figuring out the correct grammar usage for the situation, Mondly can help you become conversational in Finnish in a structured way.
Looking to improve your Finnish vocabulary? Drops is a beautifully-designed flashcard app that’s jam-packed with a ton of Finnish words and phrases.
Spend 5-15 minutes a day flipping through the various cards, learning new phrases that are going to help boost your overall Finnish skills.
Obviously, vocabulary alone isn’t going to help you learn Finnish, but Drops is a great supplementary resource to another language-learning app or method. It’s ideal for on-the-go learning, or just refreshing your mind on basic Finnish words and pronunciation.
A handy addition to any Finnish learning toolbox!
6. LinGo Play
If you’re looking for an app that’s similar to Duolingo but without the annoying amount of notifications and nudges, you might want to have a look at LinGo Play.
It uses all the same great gamification techniques to keep learning Finnish fun and engaging, and even has competitive multiplayer modes.
These multiplayer modes take leaderboard learning to a whole new level and really help you to motivate and push yourself with your Finnish language learning. Choose from over 5,000 flashcards that are filled with practical words and phrases.
No weird animals, no odd phrases about professions that you’re unlikely to use on your next holiday, just phrases that are actually relevant. Sound ideal, right?
In search of a Finnish language learning app that has decent-length sessions? I hear you.
More often than not, apps only provide lessons for up to 15 minutes. Pimsleur offers 30-minute lessons that focus on speaking and listening skills, recorded by Finnish native speakers.
Having been scientifically proven and developed with practiced language learning techniques in mind, Pimsleur gets you to speak Finnish from the first session. It also has a focus on practical situations and phrases that you’re actually likely to use in real life.
Things like ordering in a cafe, booking a reservation, and other everyday scenarios that you’re going to need to know and be able to understand.
If you’re looking for an app that actively improves your conversational skills from the word go, Pimsleur’s Finnish track is well worth the investment!
Want to brush up on your Finnish listening and speaking skills using authentic native language media? LingQ is an awesome app that use real Finnish language media clips, video, podcasts, and interviews to teach you Finnish.
You can listen and watch along while you read the accompanying subtitles, or you can check out the transcripts ahead of time and test yourself by how much you can remember and understand.
The reason this is such an effective tool is the fact that you’re provided with context for your language learning. For example, if you’re in a coffee shop and the barista says something you don’t understand, you can use the context clues around you to narrow down the possibilities.
This only comes when you’re learning a language with its context, rather than odd words and phrases without any topics to group them.
Once you’ve gone through all the media in the app, you can even upload content of your own to LingQ which will pull the auto-subs and allow you to learn even more Finnish.
It’s pretty cool that you can upload some niche Finnish media that has specific topics, say if you need to learn Finnish for work and need to know a very specific piece of language.
9. Learn Finnish by FunEasyLearn
Looking to boost your vocabulary skills and increase your bank of Finnish words? Learn Finnish by FunEasyLearn includes 15,000 words and phrases to help you speak, write, and read in your new target language.
With over 30 different games and quizzes to use, this app keeps learning fun and engaging. It keeps you coming back time and time again!
If improving your speaking and listening skills is more of a pressing priority for you, Learn Finnish by FunEasyLearn features over 300,000 audio clips recorded by native Finnish speakers.
You can listen on the go, or practice repeating them while you’re at home. It helps you to immerse yourself in Finnish no matter where in the world you happen to be.
With regular statistics to track your progress and different levels to keep you learning all the way up to the advanced level, this app is a great addition and easy to learn. You can also learn from over 62 different languages, so it’s not just for English native speakers!
If you’re looking for a huge amount of study materials and resources all in one place, Memrise is going to be right up your alley. Although it’s not technically a language-learning app, you can find a whole host of Finnish language tools and games on the platform.
Essentially, Memrise is a user-generated revision app. So, once people have studied for a test or to learn a language, they’ll upload their study notes, games, or quizzes to the platform to help other people find their way.
You can also find a load of Finnish language media, including both video and audio clips, recorded by native speakers.
The main downside is that you do actively have to search for these resources, it’s not in one set course or pathway that you can follow along.
It’s also not guaranteed to tick all the Finnish language learning boxes of grammar, speaking, writing, reading, and listening, so Memrise is best used alongside a more structured, traditional language learning app or method.
It’s also a good place to go if you’re looking for some more creative resources to help reenergize your Finnish learning schedule.
There are so many different styles of language resources on there that you’re bound to find something you’ve never seen before.
With one-to-one tutoring being one of the best ways to learn a new language, it’s no wonder someone has created an app that makes it a possibility no matter where you are in the world.
iTalki connects language tutors and learners from all across the globe and allows them to conduct lessons over video chat. It’s a super simple premise and one that’s loved by tutors and learners all around the world.
Simply scroll through the database of native Finnish tutors, look through their lesson prices, student reviews, and available hours and choose the one that works best for you. Enjoy having personalized, bespoke lessons on a regular basis.
You benefit from immersing yourself with a native speaker, and receiving feedback on your Finnish skills in real time – it really is a win-win.
It’s perfect if you’re planning on visiting Finland and want to test out your conversational skills on a local before unleashing your new skills on the world.
12. Learn Finnish by 50Languages
If you’re looking for a beginner app that helps you build up your vocabulary skills and has a ton of downloadable audio clips that you can check out while you’re on the move?
Learn Finnish by 50Languages is the ideal app for those of you who are in the A1 or A2 level of learning Finnish.
Learn by playing games and taking quizzes, or check out their complete online resource guide that goes so much further than just the app. It has vocabulary cards, tests, more audio clips, and a plethora of different topics for you to learn.
By combining text and audio-based learning, you’re getting s well-rounded Finnish education right from the beginning.
Normally, it takes a while for you to get to the stage where you know enough vocabulary for audio-based lessons, but Learn Finnish by 50Languages throws you in at the deep end – it’s great!
13. Finnish by Nemo
Sometimes you don’t want all the bells and whistles of a fancy app. Finnish by Nemo is simple and to the point, but packs a ton of great features into its easy-to-use interface. From quizzes to flashcards to other vocabulary-building tools and games, the app helps you form a stable Finnish foundation.
If you’re struggling with a certain topic or section of language, you can even customize and create your own flashcards in the app to work on the parts of Finnish that you’re not so hot on.
A little bit of personalization goes a long way with language learning!
It also has a whole bank of audio clips that have been recorded by native speakers. The best thing about Finnish by Nemo’s audio feature is that you can record your own audio and compare it with the clips that are already in the app and tweak your pronunciation accordingly.
Finally, if you’re short on time, Finnish by Nemo has created specific lists and sub-topics like “If you only know these 10 things”, which are great for if you’re in a rush and want to fit in a bit of extra Finnish learning, or if you don’t want to learn the whole language, just enough to get by on your next trip.
It’s an awesome little app that covers everything you need as a beginner Finnish learner.
Much like Memrise, Quizlet isn’t exactly a language-learning app, it’s more of a revision tool that helps you share your resources with others.
Quizlet specifically focuses on quizzes and flashcards that can help boost your basic knowledge of Finnish vocabulary and grammar rules in an easy, engaging, and time-efficient kind of way.
Working through the existing Finnish flashcards on the app, you go through the stages of Learn, Write, and Match. It’s similar to the way we learn to spell as children, so it’s a familiar technique that should help you learn plenty of words and phrases quickly.
Once you’ve done with the existing flashcards, you can make your own.
You can even share flashcards with your friends and challenge each other. This is ideal if you’re traveling with a friend or family member who’s also learning Finnish, or if you belong to a Finnish study group and you’re trying to revise outside of class.
Why Learn Finnish?
I mean, why learn any language? Finnish is an intricate and interesting language that has a huge reach across Scandinavia and northeastern Europe. Many tourists visit Finland each year, whether that’s for its historic cities, its wide-reaching forests, or journeying up north to the winter wonderland of Lapland.
It’s a varied country with something for everyone and is frequently on the happiest country list.
Is Finnish a Difficult Language to Learn?
Unfortunately, Finnish is considered one of the hardest languages to learn. This is due to the verb conjugation, clitics, and tricky case system.
There are a lot of different or new things to get a handle on, but the language does have similarities to Hungarian and Estonian, so if you’re familiar with those languages, you may find learning Finnish a bit easier than most.
What’s the Best Way to Learn Finnish?
Like with any language, there are some pretty tried and tested ways to learn Finnish. First of all, immersion is a great way to learn Finnish quickly and efficiently.
Whether that’s surrounding yourself with Finnish language media, spending some time in Finland amongst the locals, or finding a local conversational group that speaks exclusively in Finnish, it’s all immersion!
Secondly, the best way to learn Finnish is by having one-to-one tutoring with a native Finnish teacher. This way, you can have your lessons tailored to your specific level, needs, and goals, while receiving feedback in real time.
However, if you’re out in the middle of rural USA, Finnish tutors might not be lurking around the corner.
4 Tips to Learn Finnish
Finnish isn’t exactly a straightforward language to learn, so you might need a helping hand keeping motivation high and sticking with your language-learning journey.
Here are some helpful tips that you can use to improve your Finnish, and help you learn other languages in the future.
1. Create a Realistic Schedule
First things first, you’re going to want to create a realistic learning schedule for yourself. Saying that you’re going to practice for an hour a day probably isn’t sustainable on a long-term basis – life is going to get in the way.
Set aside a set of 15 or 30 minutes twice a week or so to practice. If you’re using shorter 10-minute language learning apps like Duolingo or Ling, they’ll have their own daily reminders, but make sure you pick a specific time each day to do the work, so it becomes a habit.
2. Immerse Yourself
I’ve spoken a little bit about immersion already, but it’s a really important thing to do when you’re trying to get into the flow and pronunciation feel of a language.
Play some Finnish music around the house, watch some Finnish YouTube videos with subtitles, or have a language podcast that you listen to. All of this is going to help you connect and get used to Finnish in between learning sessions.
3. Set Goals
To keep yourself on track, it’s a good idea to set realistic goals. Maybe you have a trip booked that you need to learn Finnish for, maybe you have a new year’s resolution to learn a new language, or maybe you’re meeting a friend who speaks Finnish and wants to impress them.
Making a concrete goal, keeps you focused and reminds you of why you’re putting the effort in.
4. Be Creative
If you’re doing the same repetitive language exercises, again and again, it can get boring and your motivation can drop, so mix it up every once in a while. Be creative with your Finnish learning strategies.
Find an activity book. Listen to some Finnish music. Bake something Finnish and engage with the culture. Keep it interesting and you’re more likely to stick with your studies.
It’s a Perfect Time to Start Learning Finnish!
Even though Finnish is a tricky language to learn, thanks to its complex grammar, it is definitely possible to learn the language using apps and games.
Whether you’re using these apps as the base for your Finnish language learning, or are using them alongside other language learning resources like classes, books, podcasts, and more, there’s a whole range of varied apps for you to choose from.
We all learn in different ways and learning a language is no different.
The language learning app that works for your friend might not work for you, and with the majority of these apps either having free versions or a free trial, why not try a selection and see which ones work best for you before committing to paid subscriptions?
Whatever your Finnish language goals might be, these apps can definitely help you get there and even have fun while you’re doing it. So, what are you waiting for? Head to the app store and start learning Finnish today!