First published on EDUKWEST
In Asia mobile phones are more intensively used than in North America or Europe. Often they are the main computing device, replacing laptops or desktop computers entirely. This also means that mobile phones are more and more used to perform different tasks in the field of learning, from sharing questions related to homework to learning a new language.
HelloTalk offers a social app that connects language learners from across the globe. The app features a set of different tools to facilitate exchange within the community, and to help community members to learn a new language.
Introduce your startup and give a short description of what you are doing.
HelloTalk is a language & culture exchange social app. Users learn and exchange 100+ languages with language partners from 150+ countries worldwide.
Who are the founders.
Zackery is founder of HelloTalk. Born in China, raised in HK, and educated in the US, Zackery can speak English, Mandarin, Cantonese, Korean, and Japanese (intermediate). Currently, Zackery is learning Spanish (beginner).
Zackery created HelloTalk so language learners worldwide can find like-minded language exchange partners easily.
What is the main problem in education that you aim to solve.
The difficulty for language learners is to find language exchange partners through websites. Also it’s difficult to maintain contact through the web. HelloTalk aims to solve this problem.
In which markets / regions are you active. What markets / regions are next.
We are currently active in Korea, Japan, China, the U.S., Brazil, Mexico, Russia, France, Turkey.
We plan to expand to India, Germany, UK, Italy, Spain, Argentina next.
Who is your target audience.
Language learners who want to practice with native speakers in the languages they are learning.
Who are your competitors? What sets you apart from them?
While Duolingo and Busuu provide language learners with quizzes, exercises, and course content, HelloTalk emphasizes on practice with real humans. The app also features Text to Speech, Voice Recognition, Translation, Transliteration, Sentence Favorites, and Grammar Correction.
What is your business model. How much does your product / service cost.
Value added pro membership features for US$0.99 per month. The first language pair is free, learning extra languages costs US$1.99 each.
If you raised funding, how much did you raise. Who are your investors. If not, are you planning to raise funding.
We plan to raise funding in the next six months.
Are there milestones you are especially proud of and would like to share.
HelloTalk should cross the 1 million user registration mark by end of March, 2015.
What are the next steps in growing your startup.
Allow users to join language groups based on interest and topics they want to discuss.