1. Hi Winter, your concept of sending on…

1. Hi Winter, your concept of sending one sentence a day to a language learner is indeed helpful in this day when we are overloaded with language sources ranging from TEDex to BBC Learn English to VOA. The app has a minimalist design that does not distract the learner. Being able to store the sentences will afford easy and frequent review. The freemium model is a good business model especially if the paid version is competitively priced. Hosting it on WeChat makes Orange English even more accessible since everyone is on it constantly and the potential for advertisement placement is huge. Your team is small and efficient with just one content creator and one learning designer, which will keep your costs down. Therefore, $100,000 is a reasonable amount to ask for, considering that the market in China is massive with a total revenue of $1.4 billion forecast for 2022. Earning a revenue of $1 million at the end of 12 months is therefore not inconceivable.

2. I am currently a language learner of Vietnamese and living in Vietnam where I have been teaching ESL/EFL for the last 6 years. It is the fifth language that I am learning, with English as my native language, Malay as my second (intermediate proficiency), Mandarin Chinese as my third (elementary proficiency) and French as my fourth (beginner proficiency). I am ethnically Southern Chinese and I grew up in Singapore, which is a former British colony with a multi-racial and multilingual cultural mix.

3. I have found it most effective when I learnt a language using the communicative approach, where I learnt vocabulary, whole phrases and sentences in thematic contexts. This approach helped me to have a feel for the rhythm of the language, to have better listening comprehension and to respond appropriately. Knowing the context was extremely important since the purpose of using a language is to communicate semantically with an audience. Therefore, I would like to suggest that when your app sends one sentence a day to a learner, it should be embedded in a context with a short two- or three-sentence dialogue to help them know when and how to use it. For example, the sample sentence you used was ‘I’ll keep you posted.’ This is an informal way of saying ‘I’ll keep you informed (of the progress of our project/decision/etc)’. However, it’s not clear from the Orange English app what this sentence really means or how to use it. Google Translation of the Chinese explanation in the app states ‘I’ll maintain/stay in contact with you.’ The word 联络 (lianluo) means ‘to be in contact’ but it does not connote the meaning of following up or updating the listener with a progress report or with the latest information. ‘To keep someone posted’ is actually an idiom so it cannot be translated literally. It therefore needs to be embedded in a context and a short dialogue so that the learner will use it only when replying that he will follow up on an earlier conversation with more information later. So, can I suggest that an explanation in Chinese could be this: 我会及时通知向你为发展情况。(Translation: ‘I will inform you of developments in the situation in a timely manner’.)

I hope your app succeeds as this minimalist approach can be very helpful as an add-on to a larger English learning platform for targeted speech practice.