Editor’s Note: This product has been removed from our side-by-side comparison because it has been discontinued. You can still read our original review below, but Top Ten Reviews is no longer updating this product’s information.
When you begin the Learn to Speak Spanish Essentials program you can enter an unlimited number of users. This convenient feature allows each person using the program a separate login so they can keep track of their individual progress. In our opinion, however, this program covers the basics but doesn't do all that it promises.
Each segment offers a pretest to determine the level at which you should begin the program, and at the end of each lesson you are given the opportunity to practice conversation with a computer-simulated voice. The computer conversations were helpful, allowing me to steer the direction of the conversation. This added an element of fun to the program while building conversation skills.
The feature set was well organized and offered a variety of applications, including a convenient feature which allows you to select the area of language acquisition you would like to study. The game section, however, could use improvement; the only games offered were Go Fish and a crossword puzzle. With the addition of a few more games this program would be far more fun to use.
Also, Learn to Speak Spanish did not come with a headset. This is a standard feature included in most language software packages and should be included with the program.
The software navigation is well designed-intuitive and straightforward. You begin with basics for beginners then move on to the language essentials segment, including pronunciation and basic vocabulary. The flow of the program is natural, not choppy.
The installation was simple except when we attempted to set up the speech recognition portion of the program. The program crashed with each attempt to apply this feature and often crashed the entire computer.
This program is a fair choice for the beginning to intermediate level Spanish speaker. Learn to Speak Essentials teaches the fundamentals of language acquisition well. With some improvements, this program would rank higher in our book.