Tag Archives: busuu

Babbel declares Premium Model a Success – Busuu launches new Group Feature

We got  interesting news from the two European competitors of Livemocha. Markus Witte, Co-Founder of Babbel wrote a blog post about the success of Babbel 2.0. If you can remember, Babbel changed from their freemium model to a premium only model in November 2009 which of course has caused some discussions if this was such a clever move.

The Co-Founder of the language learning community Busuu, Bernhard Niesner, wrote on their company blog about the launch of a new group feature on the site.

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Livemocha and Collins announce Partnership for Premium Courses

Language learning community Livemocha, now over 5 million members strong, announced a new partnership with a publisher. This time it is Collins and together they will work on premium Spanish, French, German and Italian courses.

Now this means basically that the giant from the other side of the Atlantic throws an eye on the market of its smaller competitors Babbel and Busuu, namely Europe.

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busuu receives six-figure funding from Austrian Business Angel

Exciting day for the guys at busuu. They just announced that busuu received a six-figure funding from an Austrian business angel who will also join the company as advisor.

But that’s not all. busuu also announced to finally launch Brazilian Portugese as sixth language to learn.

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busuu and PONS announce partnership

Today the language learning community busuu.com and the renown German publisher PONS announced a partnership forming the third collaboration between an online community and a classic publisher after Livemocha / Pearson and Babbel / Hueber / Collins.

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Livemocha secures another $8 Million in Series B Funding

Just when you think you can start with the recap post of the year TechCrunch reports that the online language learning community Livemocha has secured another $8 Million USD in series B funding.

This sums up to a total of $14 Million USD in funding and should help Livemocha in its fight for the crown against Rosetta Stone TOTALe.

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busuu.com now connects to facebook

Astonishingly there are not so many educational companies which have yet implemented facebook  in their overall strategy. According to Mashable the social network is adding 500.000 new users each day and has today about 325 million members. So it seems like a good plan to get yourself represented on facebook, right?

Of course, most of the companies already have fanpages, Myngle even has its own application. But none of them really implemented their product in the facebook community.

busuu.com now seems to make a first step.

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Partnerships, Partnerships, Partnerships


For a long time I did not cover all the new partnerships that were made in the education 2.0 sector. One reason for this is the huge amount of new companies which enter the game.

Really exciting times but nevertheless lets have a look at the “grown up” rebels. You will see that there is lots going on, too. Especially building alliances with the established top dogs in education.

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busuu launches new Italian Course on Friday, Portugese soon

In yesterday’s Edukwest interview with Bernhard Niesner of busuu.com he announced for the first time that they’re going to launch the new busuu Italian language course on the website in addition to their existing English, Spanish, French and German courses this Friday.

Moreover, they’re experimenting with crowdsourcing  to launch a Portuguese course soon. So far, more than 50 Brazilian Portuguese signed up to function as crowdsourcing translators.

I’m happy to see busuu extending their offer and I look forward to these new courses that’ll keep my language garden green and will hopefully make me earn some busuu berries.

Following this link you’ll be directed to the full interview with Bernhard on EDUKWEST.

Personal Review of the second E-Teachers Conference

Before starting to give you my personal review I have to thank a couple of people. Let me start with Vikrama Dhiman of WiZiQ who supported me all the way from the planning to the ETCon today. I think he did an amazing job, so Kudos to you! You made the second ETCon a really smooth event for everyone involved.

Secondly I want to thank the members of the panel. Jason West of Languages Out There who did a great presentation about communities and shared emotion, Bernhard Niesner of busuu who gave us an inside view of his company and his thoughts on self regulating communities and the difference between in house developed content compared to crowdsourced content, Kevin Chen of italki who talked about problems of international / global platforms and the right member mix and last but not least again Vikrama Dhiman who explained how non educational companies use crowdsourcing and that crowdsourcing not always needs a community.

And of course I have to thank the great audience. You asked awesome questions that led to a resourceful discussion of the panel at the end. Thank you for attending the ETCon and spreading the word. I really appreciate your interest!

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E-Teachers Conference 02 – Communities and the Power of Crowdsourcing


The second ETCon will be on August 27 at 3PM CEST. We scheduled it this time towards our attendees and panel members in India and Asia.

As last time the E-Teachers Conference will have a first class line up of panel members. This time our panelists are:

Shirley Yiong, Marketing Manager of Livemocha
Jason West, Founder of Languages Out There
Bernhard Niesner, Co-Founder of busuu
Kevin Chen, Co-Founder of italki
Harman Singh, Founder of WiZiQ

The panel will present their own point of view about the topic Communities and the Power of Crowdsourcing. The presentations will then be followed by a moderated discussion and a Q&A session with the audience.

You can ask your questions on the ETCon directly to the panel by using the classroom chat or using Twitter and the #ETCon hashtag. If you cannot attend on the thursday but want to ask a question you can also post them in the ETCon blog at http://etcon.eteachersacademy.com

The ETCon is a free event and everybody interested in elearning is welcome to join. Just subscribe for a free ticket.

The second ETCon is hosted by WiZiQ.

Follow the ETCon on Twitter @ETConference or join out twub at http://twubs.com/etcon

Royal Rumble – The Champion enters the Ring

As a kid back in the nineties I loved to watch Wrestling on TV. Hulk Hogan, The Undertaker, Bret Michaels, The Heartbreak Kid, you name them. One of the events I loved the most was the Royal Rumble where every two minutes another Wrestler entered the ring. The rule was simple: the last one in the ring won the match and you had to get all the others out of the ring above the top row. But their two feet had to touch the ground to be out of the match.

At some moments of the fight there were up to 20 Top Wrestlers in the match, building alliances that broke the next minute and so on. You see, the WWF taught me a lot about business ;).

Now what has this to do with online education? Well, you can say that in the Royal Rumble of language learning communities we are now at the point where the World Champion entered the Ring. In this case Rosetta Stone with their new product TOTALe.

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The Proof that Language Learning Communities are the most efficient way of learning right now

Evaluation of Evidence-Based Practices in Online Learning.

This is the title of a report published by the U.S. Department of Education. I think it is a must read for online education companies although it was made for K-12 education in the U.S. because it clearly shows why language learning communities like Livemocha, Busuu or Babbel are so popular and seem to satisfy the needs of their members.

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Busuu and Babbel are nominated for the European TechCrunch Awards

The two european based language learning communities Busuu.com (Spain) and Babbel.com (Germany) are nominated in different categories at the Europas, the european TechCrunch Awards in London.

I will be there, too and hope to get some “insider info” out of those guys. And some free cocktails, of course.

If you want to vote for your favourite platform, here are the links.

Busuu.com is nominated as

The Europas: Best Web Application Or Service (EMEA)
The Europas: Best Bootstrapped Startup (less than 3 years old)

Babbel.com is nominated as

The Europas: Best Web Application Or Service (EMEA)
The Europas: Best Design

Votes are open until wednesday (July 2nd). So, go vote :).

busuu.com won a Silver Lion in Cannes!

When I opened my feed reader today I was astonished to read the following news: busuu.com won a Silver Lion in Cannes.

What? Are they doing independent movies these days, did I miss something? But then I realized they won it for their famous marketing campaign for the Silbo Gomero.

I did not even knew what an impact it made in the news not only in Spain but also in other european countries like Germany and France. A very good example for a clever start up marketing strategy. Looking forward to meet Bernhard in London for the TechCrunch Awards and to have a cocktail on his Silver Lion!

New Busuu Flashcard Widget

Ok, today I will try something new. During the development of the workshops and courses for the E-Teachers Academy I got into screen casts as a very nice method to show people directly on their screen what I want to teach them.

So this is the first screencast for my blog. It’s about the new widget from busuu.com that will deliver a set of flashcards every day to your blog.

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New features on busuu.com

busuu.com offers two brand new features to their students. One is the busuu-energy that you can send to your friends, the other one is a personalized learning progess report.

Both features are made to support the students in their language learning. Everyone who learns a language comes sooner or later at a point were the enthusiam of the first steps is gone away. busuu.com wants to help you to get over that gap.

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Babbel.com launched its first Premium Course

The Berlin based Babbel.com just launched its first Premium Course about a week ago. It is called “Spanisch – der leichte Einstieg (Spanish – the easy Start)” and based on the course “Spanisch ganz einfach in 20 Tagen” from Christof Kehr published by Hueber.

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In the Spotlight: busuu.com The Language Learning Community


Website: www.busuu.com
Online since: May 2008
Offer: Language Learning Platform with Community. Free and Paid Premium Services.

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