20+ Best Apps to Learn Russian

Hoping to learn one of the most popular Slavic languages? Check out this selection of the best apps to learn Russian.

Best Apps to Learn Russian for Beginners

1. Rocket Russian: 4/5

Cost: Each level costs $149.95 for lifetime access

Rocket Russian is a desktop and app-based learning platform that uses a traditional teaching approach to take you from beginner level to advanced in Russian (they also have a number of other courses like Rocket French, Rocket Italian and Rocket Spanish). Using a thorough curriculum and step-by-step lessons, Rocket Languages will help you to develop your reading, writing, listening and speaking skills. Its well-rounded course structure and simple interface make it one of our top picks for the best apps to learn Russian.

What we like:

  • Simple interface that’s easy to navigate.
  • Life-time trial allows you to try out all three lessons before paying.
  • Endless content for hours of learning.
  • There are lots of opportunities to practice speaking skills.

What we don't like:

  • An expensive initial payment.
  • Lots of English used, not enough Russian in places
  • Content and exercises can get repetitive. 
  • Marketing emails get very tiring after a while.

2. Busuu: 4/5

Cost: Free or $5.83 a month for premium

suBusuu is a language learning app that helps you to learn Russian through fun and immersive activities. The lessons feature dialogue practice, conversation practice, vocabulary and some grammar. One of the most useful features of the app is the social feature, where you can connect with native Russian speakers who can help you with your writing and conversation practice. The app also works offline, which gives you a bit of flexibility, whether you enjoy studying during your commute or on an aeroplane. 

What we like:

  • App can be used offline and online. 
  • Premium subscription offers a 7-day money-back guarantee.
  • Available in more languages, not just English.

What we don't like:

  • Limited features available on the free plan. 
  • You may want to use supplementary resources alongside.

3. Russian Cyrillic

Cost: Free

Russian Cyrillic is a very simple but extremely effective app. If you’ve ever tried learning Cyrillic with little to no success then this app is for you. With this free app you will learn to read, write and pronounce each individual letter in just three hours (according to the creators!)

What we like:

  • A quick and effective way to learn Cyrillic. 
  • You can download activities and exercises to play offline. 
  • The app is completely free.

What we don't like:

  • The app is quite low quality.  
  • The videos can take some time to download.

4. Learn Russian by Greg Vick

Cost: Free

Learn Russian by Greg Vick is an app for complete beginners. The idea is that you’ll start by learning the most common Russian words you need for every-day communication. The app includes flashcards, interactive exercises, games, audio recordings and images with each word. The vocabulary you study is broken down into useful categories so you can quickly access what you want to learn, like travel, shopping, going to the doctor and more.

What we like:

  • Great for beginners, with focus on most useful vocabulary. 
  • Includes helpful categories to break down what you’ve learnt.
  • Completely free! 

What we don't like:

  • Only available on IOS. 
  • The app is fairly basic and not very well developed.

5. Drops

Cost: Free/ $7.59/month

Drops is a fairly new language app that resembles Memrise. It’s fun gamification and five-minute lessons are just two reasons why we think it’s one of the best apps to learn Russian. The games keep you engaged, while the short bursts of studying means you can squeeze a lesson into your lunch break, daily commute or just before you go to bed! Drops already comes with over 1,700 Russian words uploaded, organised into 90 categories, but you can add your own flashcards too if you want.

What we like:

  • Quick bursts of learning. 
  • Screen taps and swipes for easy learning.  
  • Over 1,700 words already on the app!

What we don't like:

  • Doesn't teach you any grammar. 
  • The activities can get quite repetitive. 
  • You’ll need to use other tools to become fluent.

6. Babbel: 4/5

Cost: $12.95/month

Babbel has become very popular amongst all language learners, which is why it’s made it to our list of the best apps to learn Russian. The app offers users 10-15 minute lessons, which include a mixture of listening, reading, writing, grammar and pronunciation exercises. You can also track your learning on Babbel to see how your progress is coming along.

What we like:

  • The first lesson is free so you can see if you like the app. 
  • Babbel fits easily into your daily routine. 
  • You will learn the basics of Russian quite quickly.

What we don't like:

  • Exercises can get tedious.
  • Quite expensive compared to other apps on the market.

7.Learn Russian Alphabet Handwriting

Cost: Free

Like the Russian Cyrillic app that we mentioned earlier, Learn Russian Alphabet Handwriting’s sole aim is to teach you how to write in Cyrillic. It does this by providing quick, interactive lessons that take you through the strokes of upper and lowercase letters. Each letter comes with an audio recording of the phonetic pronunciation too, so you can associate each character with its specific sound.

What we like:

  • Completely free!
  • Very easy to use.
  • Combines writing and reading practice.

What we don't like:

  • Lots of ads on the app (that’s what keeps it free after all)
  • Not a full course, only beneficial as a supplement to your studies

8. Duolingo: 3.5/5

Cost: Free

Duolingo helps you to learn Russian using a fun game-like approach. It tries to cover everything from vocabulary and reading to writing and pronunciation skills. Since Russian doesn't use the Latin alphabet, you can also learn how to read and write Cyrillic through the app, and when you're ready you can dive into learning Russian grammar. If you’re a competitive person you can compete over high scores with your friends, win badges and join the leaderboard; a great motivational tool when it comes to learning Russian!

What we like:

  • The app is completely free; you don't even need an account to start learning. 
  • User forum where you can chat with other Duolingo learners.
  • Covers different aspects of Russian.

What we don't like:

  • The Duolingo Owl can be a little annoying.
  • The activities and the exercises can get repetitive. 
  • Not enough to get you fluent in Russian.

9. Mondly: 3/5

Cost: Starts from $9.99

Mondly relies on quick audio and text-based games to help you to memorise useful vocabulary and learn Russian quickly and effectively. Aside from reading and comprehension exercises, Mondly offers some great resources for getting your head around Russian grammar and even a state-of-the-art speech recognition tool. Simply speak into your phone, when prompted, and Mondly will let you know how good your pronunciation is and what you need to work on.

What we like:

  • Follow your progress with advanced statistics. 
  • Compete with your friends using the leaderboard! 
  • The recordings are made by native Russian speakers.

What we don't like:

  • Quite expensive compared to other apps.
  • Games can get repetitive after a while.
  • Not tonnes of grammar included. 

10. Memrise: 3/5

Cost: Free or $8.99/month for the premium

Memrise encourages you to learn Russian through fun flashcard-like activities that cover all the basics. Memrise was actually created by neuroscientists and memory experts that wanted to develop memory-based learning methods to help language students. You’ll learn through a series of flashcards that show you an image and its corresponding Russian word. If you struggle with motivation, you can set daily goals on Memrise, and score points for how often you study, and how well you remember the vocabulary.

What we like:

  • Plenty of content available for free.
  • Clips recorded by real native speakers.

What we don't like:

  • Activities can get repetitive after some time.
  • Sometimes the picture associations don't work as well as they should.

Best Apps to Learn Russian for Intermediates

11. Tandem: 5/5

Cost: Free

Tandem is a messaging platform that pairs global learners to help each other through texts, audio messages, and video calls. It essentially takes the language exchange model of learning and amps it up with a user-friendly interface and some great features. Simply fill in your profile, and start searching for a Russian native to practice your language skills with! You can search by interest, location or language. Just remember, that you’ll need to offer up some practice in your native tongue too, as this is a two-way language exchange.

What we like:

  • Great for socialites who love to meet new people.
  • Free version is good enough that you don’t need to purchase a membership.
  • Moderated profiles to keep users safe.

What we don't like:

  • You need a basic knowledge of Russian to be able to communicate. 
  • Not an actual course, only a supplementary tool. 
  • Can feel like a dating app at times.

12. Clozemaster: 4/5

Cost: Free

Clozemaster is at the top of the list when it comes to the best apps to learn Russian for intermediate students. Going beyond the abilities of Memrise, Clozemaster intends to help you build up your vocabulary by presenting new words and phrases in context. You’ll be shown a series of words, and then given games and tasks to practice your new vocab. Clozemaster also focuses a little bit on grammar, so you can get your head around why a word has changed its ending in certain phrases.

What we like:

  • Improve your reading, writing and listening skills.
  • Download activities and exercises to play offline. 
  • Track your progress through the app.

What we don't like:

  • Could focus more on grammar in places. 
  • Free version is very limited.
  • Language errors in some places.

13. 6,000 Words by Fun Easy Learn

Cost: Free

6,000 Words is a fun app designed to help you learn as much vocabulary as possible. As you might have guessed from the name, the app includes 6,000 words and 5,000 phrases, organised by how common they are and their levels of difficulty. This means you’ll only focus on the words that you’re likely to use when you’re speaking Russian! For each word, you’ll be given an image and a recording (by native speakers) to help with your pronunciation.

What we like:

  • Game oriented learning. 
  • Available on IOS and Android.  
  • Total focus on vocabulary. 

What we don't like:

  • Limited learning available. 
  • You will need other resources to become fluent.

14. LingoDeer: 4/5

Cost: Free

LingoDeer’s grammar-based structure is designed to bridge any gaps in your technical Russian abilities, while its traditional lessons help to build your understanding of Russian vocabulary, grammar, pronunciation, and sentence structure. At the end of each lesson, you’ll find a series of exercises, including pronunciation practise, spelling tasks, finding the correct order of the sentence, matching words to their corresponding photos, and doing other vocab drills. With Linogdeer you will be able to take your learning to the next level through fun and interactive games.

What we like:

  • You can learn how to read Cyrillic. 
  • The grammar and vocab are aimed at intermediate students. 
  • There’s a travel phrasebook available.

What we don't like:

  • Hard to practice speaking. 
  • Includes in-app purchases.
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15. Anki

Cost: Free

Using the flashcard method, Anki is a great resource for polishing up your vocabulary. You’ll be shown a series of words repeatedly to help you store the words in your long-term memory. You can select from one of the thousands of courses available or even make your own. If you are cramming for an exam or you want to make quick progress then this is one of the best apps to learn Russian.

What we like:

  • You can use the flashcards available or create your own! 
  • Aside from language, you can also learn about Russian culture and society. 
  • Free to use and available on all devices.

What we don't like:

  • No opportunities to practice speaking. 
  • Limited learning.
  • Flashcard technique doesn’t suit everyone.

Best Apps to Learn Russian for Advanced Speakers 

16. HelloTalk: 3/5

Cost: Free

HelloTalk is an app for those who are confident enough to communicate with native Russian speakers. The platform works as a global language exchange where you can find people who match your interests and hobbies and speak to them via audio or video calls. This is a great opportunity for practising your speaking and comprehension skills. If you’re not ready to commit to that, you can use the chat function which will help you practice your Russian writing. There are a lot of built-in functions like a grammar correction function, text-to-voice functions, and even 1-1 language lessons with native tutors.. 

What we like:

  • The perfect way to meet new people that can help you with your language skills.  
  • The app is completely free.  
  • Tons of great functions are available as text to voice, grammar correction and more.

What we don't like:

  • Not an ideal app if you are introverted. 
  • Lacks actual lessons, it can only be used as a language exchange app.
italki

17. italki

Cost: Prices start from $5/hour

Italki is one of the best apps to learn Russian efficiently and effectively by connecting you with native tutors. As a student, you can choose a teacher based on their age, location, experience, goals and interests. You pay a set price per lesson which varies depending on the teacher. You have to be a fairly confident speaker to be able to benefit from these classes.

What we like:

  • Enables you to connect with teachers from all around the world. 
  • The platform is super easy to use: from finding a teacher to completing a payment. 
  • The teachers aren't always flexible.

What we don't like:

  • The best teachers can be expensive.
  • Quality of teaching varies.

18. Russian Slang and Swear Words

Cost: Free

Russian Slang and Swear Words is a simple and easy-to-use app with only one goal. And we think you know what it is! This app is like Urban Dictionary but only for Russian. It provides text and audio of each Russian swear or slang word, as well as examples of when and how to use them. If you want to start speaking like a native then this app is for you!

What we like:

  • The app is completely free! 
  • Recordings and helpful pronunciations of each word are available. 
  • Learn to speak like a true Russian.

What we don't like:

  • Only available on Android. 
  • Since it only has one aim, the app can seem pretty limited.

19. Russia Television and Radio

Cost: Free

The Russia Television and Radio app is one of the best apps to learn Russian for advanced students hoping to boost their comprehension and listening skills by keeping up to date with Russian news. It is the official app for the All-Russia State Television and Radio Broadcasting Company, which means you will have access to true and honest Russian news in real-time. This is the best way to work on your comprehension skills and new vocabulary. Lucky for you it is also 100% free.

What we like:

  • Completely free! 
  • Great app for students interested in politics and international affairs. 
  • Can download material and use it offline.

What we don't like:

  • Language is very advanced and they speak incredibly fast. Could be out of reach of some advanced speakers.

20. BBC Russian

Cost: Free

Similarly to the app we mentioned above, BBC Russian is designed to deliver Russian news straight to your phone. This is ideal for those advanced students who want to grow their vocabulary, advance their reading and comprehension skills and learn more about Russia. The articles are divided into sections like art, economics, science, sports and more. You can pick and choose which topics suit you best.

What we like:

  • Great for reading and comprehension practice. 
  • You can listen to unaltered speech and text. 
  • Ideal for students interested in politics and current affairs.

What we don't like:

  • Language can be difficult to follow.
  • Not a dedicated language app, just a good resource.