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on 3 September 2011
Well, it's an interesting program that is for sure. Initially a little frustrating as it doesn't tell you the English version of what you're learning, however, a little revisiting of lessons and slowly the ideas of how the language works seems to make sense. All this means you're massively exposed and re-exposed to the language, so even if you don't think you're learning, you are. I find Japanese sentences running through my brain when I'm going to sleep and by the next lesson I'm so familiar with these phrases that I can't help but remember parts of them. It is also addictive. I actually enjoy this software and I have never really enjoyed learning languages in the past. I don't think this is the be all and end all, but as an introduction to implant a lot of japanese into your head it is definitely working. In the future I will have to top up with more conventional methods, but I imagine that that process will be much more pleasant and fast than those dry lessons in school as I already have so many semi-understood phrases jumping around my head. In terms of listening I can recognize a hell of a lot of sentences after a fairly short time using this, this makes the future prospect of going to Japan much more exciting as I will be picking up on conversation fragments all over the place.
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Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
Clearly this product is very expensive, some may argue it's pointless spending such amounts of money on a piece of software when one could get a learning book/CD or other software for a fraction of the cost, but when you understand what Rosetta Stone offers, you'll realise it's actually worth the money.

How Rosetta Stone works is by teaching you as you would have when growing up, when your brought up in this world you know no language until of course you start linking words with items/objects etc.. and this is exactly how this works, it doesn't tell you anything in English which can seem daunting, however with the learning style it uses, makes it a more natural way of learning.

It's also done in cores so you can start back from where you left-off, or go back and redo a certain section (which is great if you want to refresh your memory).

I normally struggle very badly when it comes to learning new things, but with this software I'm able to do much better than any book other learning book I've tried to use in the past. That's not to say I haven't struggled at points, because I have, it's just I've had less issues with this software.

That said, you need to be motivated to learn a new language and set time aside and stick to a routine if you wish for this to work successfully as well as making this software worth the money, if not you wont pick it up as fast and it will be a big waste of money.

Personally I would recommend this software, however I would suggest having a good think about it and decide whether your willing to put the time & effort in before you purchase.
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VINE VOICEon 15 November 2012
Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
I don't really know how to tell how great I have found this to be. It's so thorough, easy to use and well presented. I'm hardly through any of the tasks, yet can see how I've got left to progress through. My enthusiasm remains high and unfaltered with the studying I've done to date. I've got tasks to do when they suit me, and at the moment I seem to be spending every spare moment trying something/repeating something just to let things sink in.
I'm hardly fluent, barely a beginner, but while I have the freedom to learn with this well put together package I'm confident that I'll improve and continue learning while I have this to hand.
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on 3 January 2013
Rosetta Stone offers the user the chance to learn languages intuitively and instinctively. It's an easy and fun program to use. I do feel like it helped me improve my Japanese, especially my listening ability. There are, however, some major issues.
Firstly, the program does not offer direct translations along the way. This might not be a problem when learning a European language, but in the case of learning Japanese, where the structure of a sentence is so radically different, it can be confusing as RS offers hardly any clue to some differences in language that would be tough to work out through intuition alone. For instance, in Japanese there are two different words, 'imasu' and 'arimasu', used in a sentence to refer to things that are living and non-living respectively. The only way I managed to work out how to do the exercise in question was by googling the answer. I probably could have worked out how to complete it, but not with total confidence as to what the words really meant.
Another issue is the writing section. I'm sure it'd be fine for languages based in the roman alphabet, but it's not at all effective for learning Japanese characters. The user is expected to enter their answer only phonetically, and while it's no doubt difficult to enter Japanese characters via a keyboard, I do think the developers were somewhat lazy in not devising a different/better system for learning other alphabets.
Finally, the price: way too expensive. I'll leave it at that.
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VINE VOICEon 14 August 2012
Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
Whilst this loses one star due to some initial problems installing (had to resort to Rosetta Stone website for help - and I'm tech minded!) the software and language learning system is fantastic. Total immersion is the key to Rosetta Stone and whilst a little strange to begin with, once used to it you will be learning the given language in no time. Japanese is like no other language I have ever tried to master, all others being European based. I approached this, therefore, with trepidation and fully expecting to find it too difficult as this is what I found with another Japanese language learning audio course. The difference with Rosetta Stone is that you are surrounded by the sights and sounds of the language and you are monitored in your performance when speaking it.
Brilliant ... just wish I could afford to expand my Rosetta Stone collection to include other languages.
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on 18 November 2012
The Rosetta Stone method is nothing to argue about, quite good if you are disciplined. The functionality and connectivity is also good.
The main selling point for me was the ipad companion, i travel a lot and to use travel time to practice was a appealing prospect. This is not possible, unfortunately, since the companion needs online access at all time, it has no offline use. It more or less kills the usability of the ipad app, a bad implementation of a good idea. It is also worth noting that the companion require a separate subscription apart from the Total-e box with disks, this is not clear when you buy the box

Yet another broken customer experience is the purchase process via amazon. I bought from Amazon UK since the rosetta stone website always rerouted me to a french language site- since i do not speak French it was a hassle. Unfortunately a product bought in UK from BE is not upgradable,the RS website will kick you out every time. RS just dont have their right management up to speed for all of Europe even if they are selling to the whole area This is yet another example where RS is making a poor customer experience
I love the language product, i really dislike RS webservices and its broken salesprocess
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VINE VOICEon 25 April 2013
Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
Learning Japanese was never going to be easy and it's a mistake to try and sell it as anything else. Divided into flash cards that repeat and try to capture your intonation, Rosetta Stone is certainly fun and quite fast paced. You build vocabulary at speed although I do question what it actually picks for you to learn and after a terribly long winded install process (discs, codes, updates, patches, online registrations, mic tests and so on) the user interface starts to improve.

There is however two key flaws to the product which are really hindering me. There is SO much that is left unexplained. You're left to wonder about sentence structures, masculine/feminine or live/inanimate. There's words that constantly pop up that I'm saying but I've no idea what they actually mean. What's missing is the grammar aspect. I know its boring and heady but just a simple explanation would accelerate my learning ten fold. I would also argue it throws a few new words at you at once and leaves you guessing what's what at times too.

However the format is fun and interactive and I am slowly but surely getting there. It's so valuable to hear the words but there's no highlighting of the Japanese symbols to what sound matches each symbol so that's a shame.

Still yet to find a kit that hits the nail.
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 19 April 2013
Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
I've had several attempts at learning and refreshing my knowledge of Japanese. I've still not managed to actually go to Japan despite my fascination with the place, but I am determined that when I do so I should have at least elementary skills with the language to be able to let go of the English-speaking tourist trail.

Rosetta Stone has it all. Other reviewers have done a good job of detailing the features and the method, as well as the deficiencies (learning to read and write in Japan's three alphabets is fiercely difficult in my experience and I agree that the developers could have gone further to create a more usable interface for the student as this would really set it apart from the competition).

The price that Rosetta Stone costs is on the high side but compared to a few weeks with a tutor it all starts to make some sense. Still, the only language asides from English that I have truly mastered to fluency is French and I did this by spending time in France. I can't imagine that I will ever get to grips with Japanese purely from software and that is the key limitation of this kind of product.
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VINE VOICEon 24 April 2013
Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
This is the most comprehensive package for a self-teaching language kit I've ever owned. You're paying for what you get. Imagine you went to take a private language lesson you'd pay about 35 to 40 pounds per lesson for an hour and a half. With this one you've got your own material and you can start it or pause it when you want/can. I've owned many different kinds of language kits, like a book with CDs, CDRoms, DVDs etc., this is definitely the best learning kit I've seen, not to mention being the most expensive also. It's fun too with many different situations and levels, the vocabulary, the writing etc, are very clear and thorough. Installing and updating it at first will take hours, so make sure you have a plenty of time when you first attempt to put it in your PC/Mac. Not sure what happens when I buy a new PC, and if I want to put it onto it too, will it work with the same registration code? I'll find it out and let you guys know!
Hope this helps.
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on 21 August 2012
Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
I've actually tried learning a bit of Japanese before (without much success) using another brand of software but figured I'd give Rosetta Stone a go as it seemed to be a much more comprehensive learning program; and having tried it out, it certainly is. Unfortunately what it still doesn't do, is make it easy, at least not for me, although I'll happily put that down to me simply not being adept at other languages.

But still, this software does immerse you into the language, it doesn't feel like a chore while you're trying to learn which is a plus and I reckon that if you do have some ability at learning languages then this would be good software once you get into it. As for me, I'll keep soldiering on and see if anything substantial does eventually stick; at least it's fun!
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