Babbel has just closed a series B funding round of $10 million, with the money coming from a syndicate led by Reed Elsevier Ventures and including Nokia investment vehicle Nokia Growth Partners.
In a statement on the matter Babbel said the cash will be used to drive international expansion, and to get its product working well on “all relevant mobile and online platforms.” It will also try to boost user engagement.
Babbel’s apps and site are currently used in over 190 countries, and follow a much more 21st Century multimedia mode of learning–enabled by developments like touchscreen interactivity on smartphones and tablets as well as intelligent audio recognition (which Babbel uses to work out how well you’re pronouncing new words). The company operates in a crowded and fast-paced market, alongside innovative firms like Voxy, which tailors language lessons to include location-based examples. Duolingo, another online app-based language learning tool backed by big names like Ashton Kutcher, has innovated a way to combine social media-based language learning with crowd-sourced efforts to translate the Web.
Have you tried using an app to learn a language? If so, how’d it go?