Flowkey Review – The Best Piano Learning App in 2020

Learning how to play piano is an art in itself. It is something that requires time, patience, and effort. And if you plan on doing it, it is only right that you do it in a way that makes perfect sense.

Flowkey is a piano learning app that makes it easier for you to learn how to play the songs that you really like on your very own digital or acoustic piano. 

The app works on multiple devices and comes off as extremely beneficial for beginners to learn keyboard or even at the advanced stage of learning songs. It aims to assist the ones who are not comfortable with reading sheet music notes.

Furthermore, it is a cheat sheet to learn your favorite songs no matter what genre they associate with. It can be jazz, rock, pop, soul, classical whatever sails your boat. 

Hiring a personal piano tutor can be expensive but subscribing to Flowkey app and having your own personal learning journey best suited to your time.

Flowkey app is super smooth and easy to install. You can download it on your laptop or smartphone or iPad. The app offers a step by step instruction for playing the song that you choose to learn on a keyboard.

The tutorials are easy and fun to learn, since they combine learning with interest. It has increasingly become popular among piano enthusiasts. 

It also provides access to informational videos, blog posts and courses like Basic music theory course which is crucial for a beginner.

Without any further ado, let's get into the Flowkey review!

Flowkey Free vs Premium Version

Free Trial

Subscription Plan

Best thing you'll ever spend money on!

Access to only 8 song piano lessons like "Clair de lune", "Ed Sheeran - Perfect", "Hallelujah", etc.

Access to over 1000 song lessons including famous songs like "He's a pirate", "Can you feel the love tonight", "A thousand years", "Interstellar theme" ????.

Access to only limited piano courses:


  • Introduction to the piano
  • Playing with both hands 
  • Intermediate Piano Playing 

Access to all the premium basic music theory courses:


  • Introduction to the piano
  • Playing with both hands
  • Intermediate Piano Playing 
  • Mastering Chords 
  • Reading Sheet Music Notes
  • Playing scales 
  • Playing scales II 

Learning on Flowkey App

Flowkey, in my opinion, is extremely easy to navigate through and the process of setting up the app is easy.

Be it on a mobile/iPad or a laptop, the first thing you do install the app and answer a few questions that relate to your connection with piano and music in general. It would ask your preference in genres, your experience with piano, if any, and much more to get an idea about to take you further in this personalized piano learning journey.

Flowkey tracks your progress through the microphone or MIDI connection from your smartphone/laptop/iPad.

Flowkey app gives the user the option to follow through as a Beginner, Intermediate, or an Advanced or Pro player. 

The app covers finger placement and posture techniques all the while teaching the basics.  As you move to the intermediate level, the difficulty increases a little bit. Intermediate level involves the usage of both hands.

The song covered in the aforementioned level are a little more complex and take into play major chords. As the difficulty level increases, the range and variety of songs available increases. 

After signing up, you can choose the songs and pieces you want to learn as per your mood too. There are happy song, emotional song, melancholy song, energetic song, and so on.

Flowkey Song Categories

Classical Music

Game music

Happy music

Kids

Pop Hits

Jazz

Rock

Traditional

Film & TV

Melancholy

Partners

R&B

Romantic

Evergreens

Groovy

Energetic

Mellow

Christmas

Asian Pop

Smooth

Flowkey app has simplified the layout and made it appealing in a way that the songs categories list are laid out well, which makes it easier to choose what suits you the best at the moment.

There is a list of genre's to choose from. Select the song of your choice available in the novice’s range and move your way up to a buffet of songs from all kinds of difficulty levels by improving them.

The music theory tutorials are in-depth and comprehensive in nature. The steps that are involved in learning how to play are complex, yet crucial. It takes into consideration all of them. From learning to play with two hands and improvising with them to reading sheet music notes, Flowkey piano courses covers all of it.

The unique blend of piano courses and the facility to learn your favorite songs makes flowkey app stand out among the many music apps.

Different Modes & Features 

Slow Mode - This feature lets you play along the song at a slow speed to make things clearer to you on the virtual sheet music  notes and the video slows down without disturbing the audio. 

Fast Mode -This mode lets you to play along the song in just the orginal tempo.

Loop Mode - You can select a portion of the tutorial and keep it on loop. This helps you practice the songs till you get it perfectly.

Hand Selection - This is mode is a excellent to learn difficult songs. If you get confused by multiple keys being played at a time and wish to focus on one side, it lets you pick the hand that you wish to learn first and then the other. 

For a learner belonging to any level, it is extremely important to master the art of playing perfectly with both hands. This flowkey feature is a boon in that case because it goes deep in teaching and makes the whole process fun and effective. 

Wait Mode - The virtual sheet music notes and the video waits for the player to play the notes after learning from them. Through the in-built microphone in the app, the wait mode detects your movement without making you connect the keyboard with the mobile or the computer. Henceforth, the flowkey app gives your feedback on each notes you play.

Learning on Flowkey vs Youtube

I wouldn’t lie that YouTube videos makes the world your oyster. There’s nothing that you will not find on YouTube. From songs to music production tutorials, there is everything.

However, I do not really like piano tutorials on YouTube for someone who is a beginner player. Sure, there are tutorials for all kinds of songs. What YouTube video tutorials lack is the right technique skills. You will usually find people playing piano step by step and the sheet will be displayed.

For a novice player, it is imperative to learn it right from the very start. These tutorials go with the flow. On the other side, Flowkey is a comprehensive guide that not only teaches you how to play your favorite songs on a piano, but also teaches you how to play it the right perfect technique.

From finger techniques to chord management, Flowkey app goes in deep.

Flowkey Courses

The learner can mark the section that they are working on and the app will play that section on loop until they do it correctly on the keyboard and are satisfied with it. Isn’t that great?

The hands and the sheet music are visible on the keyboard in the app for better and intricate understanding.

Unlike YouTube videos, Flowkey has Wait mode that lets the learner learn more efficiently. The microphone of the computer tracks the progress and puts the tutorial on hold until the chosen piece is played perfectly.

Without a doubt, Learning with Flowkey is better than Youtube.

How much does Flowkey cost? 

Instead of hiring a personal tutor, it is better to buy a subscription of Flowkey premium in my opinion. Well, the very fact that it combines piano learning with the learner’s favorite songs is what makes it totally appealing.

Well, coming to the price of the premium subscription, it is not very expensive than hiring a tutor.

  • $19.99 per month
  • $12.99 per month (3 months plan)
  • $9.99 per month (12 months plan)
  • $299.99 for life time access


Is it worth the premium subscription?

Flowkey Free version only lets you learn 8 songs in total per genre, which can be quite cumbersome for someone who wishes to learn more in-depth.

Premium account is worth spending money on. It gives access to 1000+ songs and lots of basic music theory courses.

That’s not the end of it all. It even has Video games’ music for learners to learn. Using the Slow mode lets you take chunks of the music and learn them more effectively.

Also, if you’re someone who usually buys sheet music, the best way is to get the subscription of Flowkey which will cost cheaper than that. 

If you pay on monthly basis, you're spending $239.88 while if you pay for the 12 month plan it's $119.88. You're saving $120! 

However, I'd recommend you to get the monthly plan at first, so that you can make sure that it suits you!

A personal tutor in a US city will charge you atleast $100 per month, So when you compare it with Flowkey premium, It's a steal deal!

Pros

  • A unique experience to practice piano which is fun and effective
  • Affordable when compared with piano teacher
  • The basic music theory courses is perfect for a beginner to get started
  • Access to huge variety of song
  • Super easy to setup and the user interface is smooth
  • Slow Mode and Fast Mode helps you to play along the song in different speeds
  • Wait mode uses in-built mic to track the progress and puts the song on hold 
  • Loop feature helps to learn difficult parts of the song
  • Supports single hand playing
  • Slow motion feature is helpful to learn fast paced songs

Cons

  • There's a learning curve which will take some time for you to get you used to the app
  • No metronome feature in the app
  • Piano tutor might be better for learning certain piano techniques and basics
  • Lack in teaching composition 

Conclusion

I've tried plenty of piano learning apps before and most of them wasn't upto par. Most apps were created just for fun-experience. While the app was focusing on providing a different level of learning experience. 

For beginners, Flowkey is a great choice to learn piano especially the paid variant as it offers lot of basic music theory courses. The wait mode  and slow mode is our favorite feature.

The user interface is easy to use. The only caveat is that unlike Piano teacher, this app can't help you with posture and technique. 

I'd recommend you to use app once you've learnt the absolute basics of piano like posture, techniques. 

Happy learning!

About the Author Wendell A Wiese

I'm the lead researcher and content manager at PianoNadu. I test various different digital pianos and share our unbiased reviews here. We test them on various different aspects and make sure it passes our quality criteria. During my college years, I was a part of my college band known as DMT. I was the Pianist in our band. My love for playing the piano grew during middle school. Read more about me here

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