FluentU, 2012—Present

Bringing language learning to life with real world videos


Project summary

FluentU is an application that helps teach foreign language skills using real-world videos. Originally an educational resource for Chinese language learners, FluentU soon expanded to other languages. The program helps users learn vocabulary by watching video content — commercials, music videos, news, etc. — in the target language.

All videos have subtitles in both English and the target language, and there is detailed vocabulary information available for each word. After watching the video, the user completes a short quiz. The system tracks learned words and supplies content that includes newly learned vocabulary.

When we started working with FluentU, there was a working prototype of the basic version. UX design is mostly handled by the original creators, while we work primarily on UI. We implemented several iterations of the visual design for internal interfaces and promotional pages, and helped FluentU design native apps for iOS and Android according to systems’ guidelines.


The catalogue. Videos can be filtered by difficulty, topics and content type.


Video page features student’s progress, vocab, transcript and similar content


The iOS mobile app has a user rating of 4.5 stars in the US App Store (as of November 2018).


Android app is currently in development (as of November 2018).

The FluentU user is dealing with an immense number of videos, word definitions and dialogues that require close attention. We generally believe that “the less design, the better” and we adhere to this idea with FluentU. We continually try to reduce the number of distracting visual elements and put the focus on the content.

We are pleased to be a part of the FluentU team and appreciate their thoughtful, iterative approach to usability design.

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