Recently, Bytedance (字节跳动) has been testing a new English learning application called Tangyuan English, which features the “AI + real person” teaching mode. It is the third English learning product Bytedance has developed, apart from OpenLanguage (开言英语) and Dubaibeidanci (读白背单词).
Compared to OpenLanguage, which provides various English podcasts of specific scenarios, this new app offers interactive video courses. The AI assistant will give a note about the pronunciation of learners and teachers can thus help them to improve it.
Genes of Bytedance (or of Tiktok) are deep inside Tangyuan English. Different from other English learning applications, it possesses a short video sector which is based on rich video resources of TikTok. Also, just like TikTok, while having lessons in Tangyuan English, you can just hold your phone vertically instead of turning it around to a horizontal position.
All these characteristics of Tangyuan English will surely make English learning process more fragmented. It is hard to tell whether the existence of its short video part is helpful or a diversion. Anyhow, this TikTok-like English learning app will attract many users of short video platforms as well as those who don’t have time for systematic courses.
Actually, it is not the first time that Bytedance tries to add short videos into education apps. Its English word-learning app Dubaibeidanci also has a short video part, but the app remains ordinary and unknown. While Bytedance is testing its new education app, whether short videos will be a stimulus or not in education is still to be tested.
Founded in 2012, Bytedance is an internet technology company in China owning several content platforms, such as Toutiao, Tiktok and so on. With advanced AI analysis, it can make accurate recommendations based on users’ interests. So far, Bytedance has invested in news and short video platforms, camera apps and online education sector.