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Duolingo, the language-learning app and website, just launched it first course in the Hindi language for English language speakers.

The lessons, currently available through Duolingo's web app but coming to the company's app for iOS and Android devices in the future, is designed for English language speakers who want to learn Hindi for the first time or want to brush up on the language. If you have some proficiency with Hindi, you can test out some of the basics and skip ahead.

Based on native speaker population, Hindi is the No. 4 language in the world, following Mandarin, Spanish, and English, and Duolingo said it began work on the lessons a year ago to meet what it anticipates will be a popular course. According to Duolingo CEO and Cofounder Luis von Ahn, "Hindi is spoken by over 500 million people worldwide and is one of the most requested courses on Duolingo, so we're very excited to launch this course!"

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The new Duolingo Hindi language course starts with the basics before moving on to learning plurals, family, animals, activities, numbers, health, weather, and conversation.

You can set the length of each lesson -- from Casual to Insane -- and work through learning the language by listening, speaking, translating, and identifying items to build your vocabulary. As you successfully complete lessons, you earn experience, and Duolingo rewards you with with additional credit for how many days in a row you complete lessons. Duolingo is free to use, and courses are supported by ads and short videos. If you want to go ad-free, you can pay $9.99 a month or $84 for an entire year.

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Duolingo already offers Mandarin, Spanish, and English language courses and will launch a course in Arabic later this year. The company said it is also working on English language learning courses for Bengali, Punjabi, Telugu, and Tamil users. For English speakers, Duolingo offers nearly 3 dozen language courses, ranging from French and Esperanto to Irish and Klingon (from Star Trek) and even High Valyrian (from Game of Thrones). Beyond English, Duolingo offers nearly two-dozen courses in other native languages, including German and Russian.

Takeaways

  1. Duolingo just rolled out new Hindi language lessons for English speakers that moves from the basics and phrases to conversational Hindi.
  2. The language course is available just through Duolingo's website but is coming to the Duolingo app for iPhone and Android in the future.

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Clifford Colby follows the Mac and Android markets for Download.com. He's been an editor at Peachpit Press and a handful of now-dead computer magazines, including MacWeek, MacUser, and Corporate Computing.