FluentU first asks you to select your level in the language so that it can filter the content you receive in your feed. As I already speak Spanish and German so I selected the “advanced” and “native” levels so the video clips I watched were about the same difficulty as what I normally watch on TV. You can easily skip between the sections of the video clip which is like having an ‘instant reply’ button in case you missed something the first time around.
- Real content for native speakers by native speakers at your level – the videos are not scripted for learners so are more realistic and natural. The fact that the videos are tailored to your level solves the major real world problem of finding the right content for you in terms of difficulty.
- Double subtitling – superb feature! You can listen, watch and read the video all at the same time so failure to understand is no longer a risk.
- Time utilization – as FluentU has a smartphone app and the videos are generally one to two minutes long, it’s perfect to stream a couple of videos when you have 5 or 10 minutes to kill. You can also download the videos to your phone beforehand in case you are going to be somewhere with no connectivity (e.g. an airplane).
- Limited content – the video library while big is not enormous at the moment and as you can’t filter by interest then interesting new content is not always so obvious.
- Limited functionality – while the app has features for teaching vocabulary directly before the videos and via flashcards after the watching the videos, FluentU is narrow in its scope – it’s provides you with video content and doesn’t approach directly other features of language learning like pronunciation and grammar.