super duolingo review

Super Duolingo Review (2022) – Is The New Premium Tier Worth It?

Super Duolingo is Duolingo’s (sort of) new subscription service for 2022.

I say “sort of” as it’s pretty much exactly the same as Duolingo’s original subscription service, Duolingo Plus. The only difference is its name and how it looks.

As such — this review is pretty much exactly the same as my Duolingo Plus review. If you’ve already read that and decided that you’re happy with the free version, then I highly doubt this will change your mind. (Unless you’re crazy about the new colour scheme!)

Still, if you’re interested to see how the owl has switched things up, or you were never that familiar with Plus in the first place, then stick around, as we’re about to answer the question that everyone’s asking:

Is Super Duolingo worth it?

Let’s dive in!

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What is Super Duolingo?

Super Duolingo is Duolingo’s new premium subscription. It replaces Duolingo Plus and gives the owl and the iOS app a futuristic makeover.

As you’d expect from a premium subscription, it opens the door to some fancy new features and gets rid of some annoying ones.

That’s pretty much all there is to it.

Is Super Duolingo the same as Duolingo Plus?

For the most part, Super Duolingo and Duolingo Plus are identical.

All the features are exactly the same. The only difference is the name and the theme — Super Duolingo swaps out the spacey, galactic vibe of Plus for a more colourful, futuristic appearance.

How to get Super Duolingo

As of May 2022, Super Duolingo isn’t available to all Duolingo users.

Everyone will have the option to upgrade to a premium membership. However, the flavour of this membership is determined by where you fall in the A/B testing, and your platform.

Some will get Super. Others will get Plus. It’s just luck of the draw.

Keep in mind that the two memberships are exactly the same. They cost the same and you get the same features. They just look different and have different names. That’s it.

How much does Super Duolingo cost?

The cost of Super Duolingo depends on a few things, such as where you are, how long you subscribe for, and whether you go for an individual or family plan.

In the USA, Super Duolingo starts from $6.99 a month.

In the UK, Super Duolingo starts from £6.49 a month.

In Australia, Super Duolingo starts from $10.83 a month.

And in Canada, Super Duolingo starts from $8.91 a month.

This is based on taking out a 12-month subscription. You can also get 1-month and 6-month subscriptions that will cost a bit more per month.

There is currently no lifetime plan for Super Duolingo.

Super Duolingo Family Plan

One way to slash the cost of Super Duolingo is to sign up for a Super Duolingo Family Plan.

The Family Plan lets you club together with up to 5 other people — friends or family — to save on the yearly cost of Super Duolingo.

The savings can be huuuuuuge.

For instance, in the UK, a Family Plan will set you back £105.99 for the year.

Spread across 6 people, that’s £17.67 a year — which works out at just £1.47 a month!

Wait, isn’t Duolingo supposed to be free?

Yes, Duolingo is 100% free. Super Duolingo is simply an optional bolt-on.

The free membership comes with all the essentials, such as complete courses, stories, audio lessons and leagues.

In theory, there’s nothing stopping you from getting to where you want to go with just the free membership. It’s a brilliant offering. And if you can stomach the ads and the heart system, you probably won’t be interested in Super.

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Why you might resist subscribing to Super Duolingo

In my case, I resisted subscribing to the premium membership for a long time. Several years to be exact.

As we’ve just covered, Duolingo is famed for being a free way to learn languages. It’s quite literally their mission to make language learning ‘free, fun, and accessible to all. ’

Even though it’s billed as supporting free education, I couldn’t see how a premium service was consistent with their mission.

And make no mistake: Super Duolingo is a very premium service. Unless you go for the Family Plan, it’s pretty expensive, especially when you consider how solid a free membership already is.

That, ultimately, is why I was on the fence for so long.

The free plan gives you access to complete courses across a range of devices. 38 languages in your pocket or at your desk, free to learn anywhere at any time. It’s easily one of the best deals in language learning.

But as we all know, the owl is persuasive, so eventually I gave in and subscribed.

And I have absolutely no regrets.

So should you join me in the land of Super?

To answer that, we’ll have to consider a couple of things: the features, and you.

What do you get with Super Duolingo?

As mentioned, Super Duolingo adds new features and removes others.

However, you’ll notice that Super Duolingo doesn’t offer as much as Duolingo Plus did when I published the original review back in March 2021.

The additions include:

  • Offline lessons [update: now included with free memberships]
  • Progress Tracker
  • Streak Repair
  • Unlimited Skips (so you can test out of any level if it’s too easy)
  • Free XP Ramp Up entries (IOS)
  • Pronunciation Review [update: disappeared a few months ago]
  • Practice Hub [update: previously Mistakes Inbox]
  • Legendary Levels (unlimited attempts)

The things that Super Duolingo removes include:

  • Hearts (in the form of ‘unlimited hearts’)
  • Ads

It’s important to note that Duolingo have a habit of rolling out new features on IOS before Android, so some of the above might not be available on all devices.

This also applies to their A/B testing, which selects users at random to receive certain updates.

The core Super benefits, however — specifically the unlimited hearts and getting rid of the ads — are available to all Super subscribers, which is ideal because these are the features that make all the difference!

Why you should consider subscribing

Even so, the question remains — do these additions and omissions justify the price?

To answer this, I’ve broken it down into three areas that will affect your experience. This should help you get a better understanding of how these features stack up in context.

Less punishing

Let’s start with what I consider to be the biggest perk of Super Duolingo.

As great as the free membership is, something that really grinds my gears is the heart system. Duolingo claim that it’s designed to discourage binging. But what it really discourages is making mistakes. Get too many questions wrong, and you temporarily lose your licence to learn your language.

This is problematic because making mistakes is an essential part of learning a language. Exposure, repetition, immersion — these are non-negotiable pre-requisites on the road to fluency. The heart system erects roadblocks that can eventually make you consider turning back.

Super Duolingo clears the way with unlimited hearts.

No more worrying about making mistakes. No more avoiding the hard lessons because you’re worried about losing your licence to learn. With Super, you are free to fully commit to learning your language.

For me, this was the big game-changer. Sure, I could always watch an ad, complete a practice, or splurge gems to refill my hearts. But these are distractions. I just want to learn a language, not mess around watching ads about energy providers I have no interest in switching to.

RELATED: It’s Time For Duolingo To DITCH The Heart System

More convenient

Let’s be honest: Duolingo’s free membership is already convenient. But Super takes it to a new level.

It gets rid of ads, paving the way for a smoother and quicker journey between lessons.

Getting rid of the hearts is also super convenient. No more 5-hour waits for a heart refill. With Super you’re free to dive in to your language wherever and whenever you want.

Individually these perks might not seem like much — certainly not enough to justify the sizeable subscription fee. But together they combine to make a significant difference to the flow and feel of your lessons.

More supportive

The free membership is already plenty supportive (where would we be without Duo’s daily encouragement?) but with Super, the owl is extra determined to carry you to language learning success.

Granted, some of the premium features are a bit pointless.

If you’re on the fence, I doubt a new app icon is the thing that will convince you to hit ‘SUBSCRIBE’!

But most of the features are genuinely useful.

The Mastery Quiz, for instance, gives you a good sense of where you’re at in your target language. It measures how much of the course you’ve completed and how much of it Duolingo thinks you’ve mastered.

The Practice Hub is another feature I use a lot. It lets you revisit questions you got wrong in previous lessons and challenges you with some toughies you might not have come across yet.

It even breaks it down into listening and speaking exercises so you can get super specific with your practice sessions.

Super Duolingo also puts you at the front of the queue for new features going forward.

Things like Pronunciation Review (which they’ve removed for some reason…) and Practice Hub are fairly experimental features that Duolingo like to roll out to their Super members first.

This isn’t always the case — they have been known to trial new features with free users as well — but generally, the juicier features get rolled out to Super members first.

This is why I describe Super Duolingo as being more supportive. It gets rid of the punishing nature of the heart system and creates an environment in which making mistakes—and being able to practice them—is actively encouraged.

How to cancel Super Duolingo

If you decide to give Super Duolingo a go, but then decide it’s not for you, rest assured you can cancel it at any time!

If you signed up through the Apple App Store, then you’ll need to do it through your Settings app. Tap your account at the top of the page, then hit Subscriptions, Duolingo, then hit Cancel.

If you signed up through the Google Play Store, you can cancel through the Duolingo app. Just tap the Super Duolingo icon, hit Settings, then Manage Subscription, then follow the instructions to cancel your subscription.

If you signed up through the Duolingo website, then you’ll need to do is head over to the website, login to your account, hit Super Duolingo, and then select ‘Cancel Subscription’.

For more details click here to read Duolingo’s step-by-step instructions.

How to get Super Duolingo for free

Did you know it’s actually possible to get Super Duolingo for free?!

Well, for a limited time, anyway.

As far as I’m aware there are currently three ways you can do this:

1. Take Duolingo’s 14-day free trial

Everyone should have access to a 14-day free trial of Super Duolingo.

The easiest way to do this is to tap on one of the Super features (e.g. unlimited hearts, Practice Hub). You’ll then get the Super Duolingo upgrade screen, where it should say TRY FOR $0.00.

Tap this, sign up, and your 14-day free trial will start immediately.

2. Look out for promo codes

Another great way to get Super Duolingo for free is to keep an eye out for Super promo codes.

Every now and then, Duolingo will release fresh codes that will let you snag a Super Duolingo subscription for nothing.

For September 2022, Duolingo is offering a mega 30-day free trial of Super Duolingo using the promo code DRACARYS.

To get your free month, simply click here. Keep in mind though that for this one you’ll need to enter payment details. However, so long as you cancel before the 30 days end, you won’t get charged.

3. Extend your streak

Extending your streak doesn’t just get you some cool goodies from the streak society. It also gets you some free trials of Super Duolingo!

These trials are usually a lot shorter than the ones above, usually lasting no more than 3 days at a time.

They’re also a bit more random and sporadic. I’ve seen users get these free trials at 7 days, 50 days, 100 days and 150 days.

Over to you

Now for the big one. The thing that matters most. We’ve considered the features. Now we need to consider you.

Why is this the big one? Because deciding if Super Duolingo justifies the price is a very personal decision. It all boils down to your priorities, goals and circumstances. From this side of the screen, I can never know what those are. All I can do is present the facts and share my experiences.

It’s also important to be clear about what Super Duolingo can do for you. Even though it’s a premium service, Super won’t make you fluent in your target language. Not by itself, anyway.

That’s because learning a language requires a balanced diet of study and application. You can’t limit yourself to just one thing.

In my case, Duolingo features heavily.

But I also use NordVPN to access thousands of TV shows and movies in my target languages (see how here);

LingQ to work on my reading and listening;

Benny Lewis’s Language Hacking books — available in French, Spanish, German and Italian — to work on my speaking;

And HelloTalk to practice my messaging.

Super Duolingo simply enhances that one part of my diet. It isn’t an all-in-one superfood that meets all of my language needs.

So, with this in mind, is Super Duolingo worth it?

As unhelpful as this may sound, only you can decide.

In my case, I think Super Duolingo is totally worth it. Because I use it so often (every day for roughly 10-30 minutes) it works out at roughly $0.22 a day over the course of the year. As far as I’m concerned this represents excellent value, as it means I can get rid of the heart system and the ads, and take advantage of the Super-only features.

But, again, everyone’s different. So here are my recommendations:

Stick with the free membership if…

  • You’re just starting out on your language learning journey
  • You’re not ready to commit to Duolingo or your target language long-term
  • You’d prefer to spend your money on other resources
  • You’re looking to cut back on expenses
  • You’re happy with the free membership (e.g. you don’t mind the heart system, ads etc)

Consider subscribing to Super Duolingo if…

  • You’ve been using Duolingo for a while
  • You use Duolingo every day (and have done for at least 30 days)
  • You’re frustrated with the heart system, ads etc
  • You want the extra features
  • You’re in a position where you can justify it financially

If you’re still on the fence about Super Duolingo…

If you’re still undecided then I’d highly recommend taking advantage of a Super Duolingo free trial. Duolingo usually offer them on a 14-day basis, which I think is plenty of time to get a feel for the service and make an informed decision as to whether it’s worth subscribing.

If the 14 days isn’t enough or they aren’t offering free trials, then it might be worth subscribing for a month to give yourself a bit more time to figure out if it’s the right membership for you.

Have your say!

So, after all that, what do you think of Super Duolingo?

Is it something you can see yourself subscribing to or are you happy with the free membership?

Do you prefer it to Plus?

Be sure to let me know in the comments!