The beauty of open source software strikes again. Fleex is a platform to learn English by watching movies, TV shows, TED talks and more. The French startup just forked Popcorn Time, the so-called Netflix for streaming content, to get “interesting” content.
As a non-native English speaker, this issue is dear to me. When I first learned English, an important part of my process was watching movies and TV shows, first with French subtitles, then with English subtitles, and finally without any subtitles. It wasn’t really customizable, and going from English subtitles to no subtitles was a pretty big step.
That’s why Fleex makes it much more progressive and seamless. You start at level 1. If you’re German for example, you’ll get both German and English subtitles. After a while, you will see more and more English subtitles. You will still get subtitles in your native language for the hardest parts of the video.
When you get better, you won’t get subtitles all the time. At any moment, you can pause the video, see the translation, click on a word to read the definition of the word. Fleex highlights idioms and expressions. Finally, you can save words for later.
Fleex isn’t free. You need to pay €4.90 a month to get an account and the service is available in 29 languages.
Before today, you could either watch YouTube videos (such as TED talks) with the Fleex player or download the desktop app. On the desktop app, you would drop a movie file and it would automatically find the right subtitle tracks and sync them.
Now, with the Popcorn Time fork, you can just search for a movie or TV show and instantly stream it like you would in the basic Popcorn Time app. Fleex will then find the subtitle tracks and adapt them for your current level. Of course Popcorn Time isn’t perfectly legal, but Netflix isn’t even available in most of the countries where Fleex is useful.