Location-based app enables users to effortlessly learn 360 words in each of Babbel’s 14 languages, from Spanish to Indonesian

Babbel, the app that makes language learning easy and affordable, today announces the launch of its app for Apple Watch. Wearables that control or monitor health or sports activity have already proven popular, but the field of education is still largely uncharted territory for such devices.

The Babbel app for Apple Watch is poised to set the pace here with a unique context-dependent approach: it integrates seamlessly with day-to-day life, empowering learners to collect vocabulary while they interact with their surroundings. Also central to the app are elements of game mechanics, designed to increase users’ motivation and maximise learning efficiency in a fun, interactive way.

“Apple Watch creates groundbreaking opportunities for language learning, connecting it to our everyday lives,” says Markus Witte, Babbel founder and CEO. “The tremendous role that space and specific places play in the function of our memory is proven, as are the benefits of bite-sized learning. Babbel for Apple Watch brings this to life in a new and fascinating way.”

Once the app is opened, it shows all surrounding locations based on the Foursquare API. Nearby locations are shown directly in the app or via Glance. A simple visit to a café or supermarket then becomes an opportunity to collect relevant vocabulary in any of the 14 languages Babbel offers, from Spanish to French to Indonesian. Each language includes 18 different location-specific categories – airport, restaurant, museum, etc. – that in turn contain 20 new words, amounting to a total of 360 words per language.

Babbel’s implementation of game mechanics sees users become ‘word hunter-gatherers’, collecting new vocabulary in an attempt to complete each of the app’s categories in their chosen languages.

The Babbel app for Apple Watch works via communication with the iPhone. It will be fully functional with or without a subscription to Babbel. The app will be available as soon as the Apple Watch hits stores.