Babbel vs Pimsleur

Updated: 02. Nov, 2022

There are so many apps to learn new languages that selecting the right one can be challenging. Before choosing a language app, there are factors to put into consideration. These factors include cost, timetable, study style, languages, etc.

It’s interesting how many tech companies develop new technologies to teach new languages. Unfortunately, most of these companies claim their method as the best, which has caused many people trouble knowing which app to pick. However, all these language apps work. What changes is how users like to study or their preferences.

Babble and Pimsleur are examples of language learning apps that teach in different manners. While Pimsleur is audio-based and focuses on listening and speaking skills, Babbel tackles various exercises. Therefore, knowing which app answers all your language learning needs is essential before subscribing to any. After reading this article, you should clearly understand both apps and what makes them special. So, let’s quickly get started with Babbel and Pimsleur’s comparison.

What is Pimsleur?

Pimsleur language app is an online platform that offers different language courses. The language app is an efficient and convenient way to become conversational in any language of your choice. The app teaches languages based on the popular Pimsleur method. The Pimsleur process teaches all language courses in audio lessons, which is basically listening and repeating what you hear.

Pimsleur offers about 50 different language courses and follows the Pimsleur method. The language courses on the app are popular as they are easy to follow and comprehend. In addition, you can study these languages anytime and anywhere, irrespective of what you are doing.

The audio lessons improve your listening and speaking skills and help you learn to memorize different and random vocabulary. Pimsleur language app is the best option for both beginner and intermediate learners. Though it might not be the best option for advanced speakers, learning a language on the app is like a cheery on a pie.

What is Babbel?

Babbel is a language learning app with a wide range of different language courses for beginners and intermediate learners. It is a paid language app that includes grammar lessons, conversation starters, and vocabulary lessons. Babbel is less expensive when compared to other language apps.

The app focuses on quality and value, with each language course containing between 30 to 80 free lessons. Babbel subscribers gain access to hundreds of language classes, courses, and levels. It also relies on native speakers for pronunciation lessons and an effective learning method. The Babbel learning method is the quickest way to handle real-life conversations.

In addition, Babbel also uses a sophisticated voice recognition system to improve the learning experience. The app’s content and price make it one of the most popular apps for learning a new language. Although the content and activities are much similar to other apps, Babbel offers a more intensive and quality range. It provides exciting features such as practice games, podcasts, and tutoring lessons. However, Babbel’s lessons can seem slow-paced and repetitive sometimes but will help you achieve a higher level of language fluency.

Similarities between Babbel and Pimsleur

Babbel and Pimsleur are language apps that allow you to study anytime and anywhere regardless of what you are doing. These language apps let you study and learn at your pace. You don’t have to enroll in regular classes or have to deal with a strict schedule.

Both language apps are easy to set up and navigate. All you need is a computer or a smartphone, access to the internet, and an account with either language app. The courses on both language apps take about 20 minutes to complete. These language courses are designed to be engaging and consistent with your schedule. You will begin with language fundamentals such as the alphabet. Then, you proceed to learn vocabulary and grammar.

Both Babbel and Pimsleur are designed with good audio functions and spaced repetition to help you retain what you are learning. Babbel and Pimsleur also have a great section to review your work. This review system help test your knowledge easily and quickly. Both language platforms have a crisp, clean interface with incredible usability and user-friendliness. In addition, both platforms will not make you become fluent but will help you get past the basic level. At the end of your classes, you should be able to read, speak and write short phrases.

Differences Between Babbel and Pimsleur

Let’s review some significant differences between Babbel and Pimsleur language apps.


Pimsleur language lessons are audio-based and focus on conversational practice. To begin each lesson, you have to complete a 30-minute exercise that your language instructor speaking in English walks you through. First, you will listen to sentences in any language you choose; the instructor will explain the situation to you. Next, you will be asked questions and have to engage in the conversation.

Basically, you listen to the words and phrases and repeat them. The listen and repeat exercises are more of a guided conversation. As you move to new levels on Pimsleur, the language instructor starts to phase out more and more. This is because you are becoming more familiar with the target language. After every audio lesson, you can review what you have learned through different drills and exercises. These exercises include digital flashcards, matching exercises, reading drills, and speed games.

You can learn a language without having to look at the screen. More important is how attentive you listen and how quickly you can pick up the language. Many people have learned different languages with this method, which is quite effective.

Babbel, on the other hand, uses a different lesson structure. The lessons on Babbel are shorter, with each lesson about 15 minutes long. These lessons can go really fast. Each lesson on Babbel has interactive exercises and drills. As you begin learning, you will have to listen to new words and repeat them before switching to digital flashcards for a few minutes.

Moving on, you might read a short grammatical lesson and spell out the words by typing them on your keyboard. The language lessons on Babbel are shorter, with various exercises and drills. These lessons include grammar explanations and short stories to show how your newly learned vocabulary works in real-life situations.  

Babbel has a fast-moving and blended learning approach with an incredible pronunciation feature. This is how Babbel and Pimsleur’s lessons compare. While Pimsleur lessons take about 30 to 45 minutes to complete, Babbel lessons are much shorter. This is because Pimsleur focuses more on listening and speaking skills, while Babbel focuses more on writing, reading, and visuals.  


Babbel has a free version. However, the features and courses of the free version are pretty limited. If you want full access to Babbel, you have to choose one of its subscription plans. The subscription plans include $10.50 for one month, $31 for three months, $63 for six months, and $126 for twelve months.

In addition, Babbel offers several special deals and discounts often, so you should keep an eye out for them. You can also subscribe for a Babbel lifetime subscription and gain full access to all its language courses and features. However, if you do not want to commit to a long-term study deal, you can always go for any of the monthly subscriptions. Babbel also offers a 20-day money-back guarantee if you are unhappy with the results.

On the other hand, Pimsleur also offers different monthly subscription plans. You can choose the Pimsleur Premium plan, which goes for $19.95 per month. You can also opt for the Pimsleur All Access plan that goes for $20.95 monthly. However, if you choose the Pimsleur All Access plan, you will gain full access to all the languages available.

With the Pimsleur All Access Plan, you can switch between languages of your choice and get all the features on the Premium plan. In addition, there is a 7-day free trial option on Pimsleur. However, in terms of prices and plans, Babbel seems to have more affordable options.

Learning Method

Babbel’s learning method focuses on native pronunciation, natural conversations, cultural insights, and cognitive techniques. The app will help you develop conversational skills in any language of your choice. Babble focuses on grammar, cultural facts, and vocabulary but won’t overwhelm you with lengthy explanations of grammatical concepts.

In addition, Babbel also combines grammar in a very understandable and elegant manner. However, you can also have live virtual lessons if you wish to go beyond vocabulary and grammar. Babbel Live is another opportunity to learn a new language in a more friendly and productive environment. On Babbel Live, there are hundreds of classes every week. All you need to do is find a perfect slot and choose what works best for you based on your interest and level.

The Babbel video section and podcasts also allow you to immerse yourself in your target language even more. Babbel app is a comprehensive and well-rounded language app that can be repetitive. However, it is a great language learning resource for learning vocabulary and grammar quickly.

On the other hand, Pimsleur language courses are audio lessons and exercises. The platform includes speed games, flashcards, quizzes, reading drills, and other exciting features. However, Pimsleur’s lessons are longer than Babbel’s and will take about 30 minutes to complete. The lessons on Pimsleur usually begin with audio exercises.

The language instructor will walk you through a native conversation, and as you progress, the instructor begins to phase out. Pimsleur lessons use the Pimsleur method designed to take a learner to the heat of the target language. The Pimsleur Method’s main part is the effective memory technique called the graduated interval recall. The method is based on learners recalling new words at precise time intervals.

Pimsleur focuses on organic learning and core vocabulary. Every word or phrase is given within the context of an actual conversation, and too much information is not given out. It may sound difficult, but it’s not. Pimsleur is a simple language learning and user-friendly platform. It will help you learn your target language engagingly and quickly. In addition, the platform is easy to navigate and full of graphics and visual aids.

Language Topics and Levels

Babel language app won’t make you fluent in your target language, but it will put you on the right track to learning. The language learning app uses speech recognition technology to improve learners’ pronunciation. With this app, you will also be able to expand your language vocabulary and learn how to use it to handle real-life situations.Also, mastering grammar with Babbel is relatively easy and efficient.

In addition, the app teaches you how to communicate on different topics and helps you understand how your target language works. The app’s language courses are divided into sections. These sections are different for every language available on the platform. However, the most popular languages include words and sentences, special courses, grammar, countries, and traditions.

Regarding levels, Babbel’s platform is divided into six stages. While stage one provides you with new pieces of vocabulary, you will have the new word in your long-term memory at stage six. On Babbel, you can always take a placement test to determine your learning level.

On the other hand, Pimsleur has five learning levels. In stage one, you begin by learning new words, and in stage six, you will learn to structure complex sentences and speak more. Every course on Pimsleur teaches you greetings, practical vocabulary, cultural differences of your target language, and pronunciations. In addition, Pimsleur’s lessons are focused on speaking and listening skills. This means that your communication skills will significantly improve.

On Pimsleur, you will learn to communicate clearly and handle real-life situations of any kind. These situations include personal life, politics, food, and travel situations.

Both language learning platforms are practical, versatile, and well-structured. However, Babbel focuses on grammar, writing, and reading skills, making it more complete regarding language topics. However, Pimsleur is more focused on speaking skills.


Language apps are designed to help learners gain and improve their language skills quickly and conveniently. There are several languages available to learn on both Babbel and Pimsleur apps. Babbel offers about 14 language courses such as French, German, Russian, Spanish, Italian, and other popular languages.

The languages on Babbel are divided into different subjects and specific courses. You can choose any learning method that suits your learning goals and change it if you want. When you subscribe to Babbel, you gain access to all the courses in your target language.

On the other hand, Pimsleur offers about 50 popular and unpopular languages ranging from Spanish to Mandarin. Pimsleur also provides English courses for Haitian, Italian, and Vietnamese speakers.


Ultimately, it comes to what you look out for in language apps. Babbel and Pimsleur are popular and reliable language learning apps. These apps will take your language skills to another level, irrespective of the learning stage you are.

With all these, there are some crucial differences that help you determine which language app is a better option. For example, while Babbel is a more affordable option with shorter lessons, Pimsleur has more language options for you. Furthermore, Babbel focuses on language skills and repetition, while Pimsleur is fast-paced.

However, users who are looking for a more immersive approach with more exercises should go for Babbel. Depending on your learning goals and style, only one of these apps will work for you. So, take advantage of the apps’ free trial period and confirm they are right for you. 

Babbel Vs. Pimsleur – FAQ

Will Pimsleur make you fluent?

No, you cannot get fluent after completing language lessons on Pimsleur. However, Pimsleur will improve your vocabulary and grammar.

Which language learning app is better, Babbel or Pimsleur?

Both Babel and Pimsleur have unique and different strengths and weaknesses. Both apps are both effective and exciting. However, choosing the best app for you depends on your learning goal and style.

What is the primary difference between Babbel and Pimsleur?

While Babbel focuses on images, exercises, and engaging content, Pimsleur focuses on audio lessons and speaking drills.


    Table of contents