Memrise vs Duolingo: Two Famous Language Apps Compared - Online Course How
Memrise vs Duolingo

Memrise vs Duolingo: Two Famous Language Apps Compared

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At the center of all communities worldwide, there is an essential aspect that brings peace, harmony, and understanding in that community; and that this is language.

Dialect is what binds people together, and the more languages you know, the more connected you are.

Here is a comparison of two businesspeople working at a shipping company. Shipping syndicates deal with nationalities worldwide, and as we all know, different locations speak different languages.

If one of the two business people knows English, French, Japanese, Spanish, and Swahili, the other only know their native language and English. Whom do you think will close more deals internationally? Of course, the one who knows multiple languages!

You see why knowing at least two dialects is useful!

By now, you should be compelled and try out learning an additional language, and what better way to do just that but by using apps and websites at our disposal.

This piece has two of the most used platforms to teach languages remotely, memrise vs duolingo.

Some Things You Need To Know About People Who Master More Than Two Languages

They are sharper

benefits of learning languages

A multilingual person is somewhat smarter and sharper than one who has only one language up their sleeve.

Learning and grasping all the rules that govern these languages is not a simple task, but it also exercises the brain to perceive and process things faster.

They find it easy to adapt to new conditions

Multilingual and polyglots had to adapt so much to learn these languages. And so this translates to so many other areas in life.

These two groups of people will find it a breeze learning new skills and partaking in new activities since the confidence of grasping the languages was achievable.

They can live anywhere

The two groups of people can quickly move locations and be comfortable doing it simply because they have the security of knowing the language or learning it just as fast. This then gives them so many options on places they can work and live.

They can become professional translators

A multilingual is a valued asset in almost every sector globally because it can deliver important messages across different dialects to the concerned parties. Knowing foreign languages can land you into a six-figure paying job where you act as the translator and facilitator to meetings and paperwork.

You perform similarly to a bridge to two parties that would have never come to terms if you were not in the picture.

These reasons are just some of the few that multilingual and polyglots have on their side. And so it works to anyone’s advantage to get to understand memrise vs duolingo so that they can get to use one that they will use to learn an additional language.

Memrise and Duolingo Compared

To compare memrise vs duolingo, we will start with the definitions of what each platform is and what it offers.

What is Memrise?

about memrise

Memrise is a language learning platform based in the UK. The forum uses flashcards in the learning process, where you get to grasp the language faster. The platform is sophisticated, offering its users a personalized experience while learning.

You will find tons and tons of languages to learn for Memrise, even the fictional languages formed in the film industry. Know of the Dothraki in the Game Of Thrones, well, you can learn the language here!

Besides that, it is accessible for people worldwide, and another essential part is that you can learn things beyond language. It is not only a language-teaching platform but other subjects like science and math. Currently, the number of Memrise users are closing in on 36 million users.

What is Duolingo?

duolingo bird logo

The second part of this comparison is an American dialect-teaching platform called Duolingo. They are available as both a website and a mobile application available all over the world. The app teaches the users multiple languages starting with the essential phrases and proceeds to sentences and paragraphs.

On Duolingo, you will learn so many languages, as many as there are on the planet. And at the end of it all, you get an assessment test to gauge your progress. It has over three hundred million users all over the globe using the platform. Duolingo has been operational since 2011.

What languages Do They Offer?


Memrise has quite an array of languages available on their site and app. They have basic English, French, Japanese, Spanish, Chinese, German, Russian, Korean, Dutch, Portuguese, and Italian.

Memrise then goes a bit deeper into more geographically specific dialects like Vietnamese, Polish, Indonesian, Arabic, Swedish, Turkish, Norwegian, and Danish.

The great thing is that you can learn more than one language at a time.


On the other hand, on the memrise vs duolingo comparison, the latter a vast reach of more than thirty countries offers more language courses. Currently, that number stands at ninety-eight different dialects.

They offer everything Memrise has on their platforms plus Indian, Valyrian, Ukrainian, Swahili, Czech, Esperanto, and Hebrew, among many more.

Verdict on Memrise Vs. Duolingo

Both platforms offer an impressive array of dialects one can learn. And the matter of choosing which to go with will depend on the vernacular you want to know. Despite that, Duolingo seems to have more on their plate when compared to Memrise.



Memrise free version

free online learning on memrise

Signing up and starting up on Memrise will not cost you a dime. And so you will open an account, pick a language, and even start learning the basics of the chosen dialect.

The free version of the platform is equipped and will offer you a tremendous ushering process into your dialect learning process.

But to get more, you will have to go for Memrise Pro that you are taking a look at next.

Memrise Pro

With the Pro, you will get additional like offline access and chatbox that make the studying even more engaging. There are three paying models on Memrise Pro, and they are as follows:

The first is that you can choose to pay per month a sum of nine dollars, the second is a yearly paying option that totals fifty-nine dollars, and the last option is a one-time payment arrangement of one hundred and thirty dollars.

Once you pay for the Pro, you also get to view native language speakers’ videos to fasten the tuition period. Your lessons get tailored according to your progress, and the word exercises proceed to more challenging versions that push you to become more aggressive learning a language.


Duolingo free version

Duolingo started as a free application, and it has remained so by adding adverts alongside their content. With a free version, you can open an account and access all Duolingo’s tools like languages and tuition devices.

It functions pretty well unless you are looking for a more advanced learning experience, which is when you can upgrade to Duolingo Plus.

Duolingo plus

duolingo plus courses

Duolingo plus has a monthly fee of thirteen dollars, or if you wish, you could pay a yearly fee of eighty dollars or six months for forty-eight dollars. This version of Duolingo has no annoying ad pop-ups, and you have the liberty to download the lessons to practice them offline even when you lack an internet connection.

The main difference between using the paid version to the free sort is that with the Plus, you get an unlimited number of hearts, which are essentially your lifeline as you use the platform.

With the free version, you get five hearts and lose one whenever you make a mistake in your learning. And once they run out, you have to wait it out to get replenished. One heart equals five hours of waiting time. However, to get the five lives, you have to wait for 25 hours, a day plus one hour.

Verdict on Memrise Vs. Duolingo pricing

Although Duolingo seems more reasonable for someone who wants to learn on a budget, both apps are quite affordable. The free and paid version’s differing factor is very slim, and one could manage without unlimited hearts.


duolingo app on phone

The features of the two sites give one a better perspective. The following are memrise vs duolingo features laid out one after the other, comparing the website and the downloadable application. The comparison should be more apparent after this section.

Memrise Website vs. App

The website version of Memrise offers one session with six words or phrases, while the mobile app only features three in every session. The app divides the website’s format into two. If you miss finishing two sessions, you miss out on the crediting reward.

But there is a reminder on the app, which prompts you to complete your training if you do not. The app also lacks an intro description to the courses— there are no multimedia levels, no timer, and no forum button.

Both platforms show the exact number of hard words to learn, which helps the learner get committed to grasping all the twenty per session. They also have levels, pictures, audios, memes, and an exact format and selection learning style.

Duolingo Website vs. App

The website version offers users the benefit of viewing the grammar notes as they learn. With the app, it will force you to look it up on your own. They both have different difficulty levels, where the app seems to be more straightforward.

The website has labs, timed practice, and you type on a keyboard. On the app, you lack lab; your approach is untimed, get pep talks as you train, and type using your devices touch screen.

Teaching Methods of Memrise

Spaced repetition

memrise bots

This methodology involves the use of flashcards that appear on the screen periodically. When you get a particular card correct, you see it less and less. The cards you get wrong will appear more so that you get to practice longer until you grasp it.


Also known as mems, they are pictorial or word illustrations that appear on screen to help you understand the lessons better. Mnemonics are a great way to make a lasting impression in the memory of the user. You can use what is already in the database or upload one of your own.


The chatbot is an automatic feature that allows the users to have a conversational forum. You can ask questions about your experience and get answers through the system. This is useful, especially for newbies.


This feature propounds the users a streamlined check on their grammatical and spelling mistakes as they use the platform. It’s an excellent accent since it trains you to write the learned language for training and practical pieces.

Teaching Methods of Duolingo

Gamified Language Learning

duolingo methods of learning

The learning process on Duolingo is highly on the pictorial front. They like using pictures, videos, and images to the words in question so that you retain the information faster and longer.

This learning format includes levels, progress indicators, point systems, rewards, tips and tricks, and social media rankings.


Stories are a very engaging way to learn on Duolingo, which involves reading through stories and earning points. Along with the habit of reading these stories, you get examined and challenged to heighten your process.


The forum on Duolingo is a place that allows a user to air out their grievances in questions and comments. If someone does not know what to do, they use it to get all the info they need.

Memrise Pros and Cons


  • It is beginner-friendly with a very straightforward user interface.
  • You gain more than language learning.
  • The customization capability makes it very useful.
  • The info received is top-notch.
  • It is an affordable pick.


  • The website and the app differ in several ways changing the experience a bit.
  • The user-generated content is not guaranteed.
  • It is not the best if you want to become fluent in sentence construction and grammatical structures.
  • You may need extra resources to fully grasp what the app has to offer, i.e., a dictionary.

Duolingo Pros and Cons


  • Duolingo is free software, and even the paid version is affordable.
  • Individual languages have extra features like podcasts, and that’s advantageous to you when learning those vernaculars.
  • The structure of the platform is very straight to the point and easy to use.
  • It has a large pool of languages to learn from.
  • It is easy to get started.


  • Specific features being only available in a limited number of languages is disadvantageous to all other languages.
  • The differences between the website and the mobile app are many.

Who has the better app Memrise or Duolingo?

memrise aplication

While we are looking into memrise vs duolingo, each has a great mobile application to offer its users on the go.

Although Duolingo seems to be more beneficial on the website version, they provide a commendable learning experience. Regardless it does the work of getting the user to learn the dialect they want to know.

Therefore, the question of which is better relies on what you are looking for since Duolingo is perfect for learning the language and constructing sentences in that dialect.

Memrise, on the flip side, is ideal if you want to get to understand the individual words and phrases of the language.  Having the two working side by side could therefore be instrumental as you gain what each proffers.

Is One Better For a Specific Language?

We cannot look at how all the languages are learned on memrise vs duolingo, but we will narrow it down to three dialects, Japanese, Korean, and Russian.


Learning Japanese on Memrise is favorable on the grasping of the phrases and learning new vocabulary. The issue comes in as some words may be wrong translated, resulting in using the wrong name for the improper purpose.

You will learn fundamental vernacular words, kanji, and kana, but fluent in speaking will require extra resources and practice using a Japanese speaker.

When it comes to Korean, Memrise has several sections that could be useful for a beginner. But you will still need some form of introductory info on the language so that you can head to Memrise. There are both audio and written texts to teach a Korean student.

Lastly, when it comes to learning Russian, Memrise helps you get acquainted with the language by offering you a list of most of the language’s vocabulary. You will have to go through all seven courses to finish the language package. When it comes to conversational Russian, you might have to employ other resources like a Russian teacher.


learning japanese on duolingo

When it comes to learning Japanese on Duolingo, you will grasp the essential Japanese words, phrases, and vocabulary. This information is, however, pretty sketchy for someone who wants to master the dialect.

Studying Korean on Duolingo will educate you with terminology and phrases in the Korean vernacular to understand communication in the language. You will also learn about tenses. You might need to practice more using other amenities if you would like to put all you have learned on the app practical.

Last but not least, studying Russian will arm you with a good number of Russian lexicon, enough to get you to complete a sentence on your own. You get a platform to practice reading, writing, and speaking. And in just two to three months, you will have finished the course.

The Final Verdict on Memrise Vs. Duolingo

Admittedly, each platform has its perks and downsides, which you will expect in any scenario.

It’s through these comparisons that one gets to understand and judge which is best for their usage. But despite the difference in memrise vs duolingo, they both have an indistinguishable end game to teach its users an auxiliary language.

 And remember what we said earlier about multilingual people? They are smarter, so become that person and get either of the two. Or even better, get both and reap the collective benefits of becoming a polyglot.

About the Author Jacob M.

Jacob has a background in finance and engineering. Outside of his day job, he is a lifelong learner, who enjoys reading, taking online courses, and writing about what he's learned.

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