Get To Know Blue Canoe

Learn how we partner with English-language training companies and multinational corporations to empower learners to speak English more clearly and confidently.

Clear Speech in Just Ten Minutes a Day

Our mobile games and activities are built on the proven 20-year-old Color Vowel® System, which has been used by over 1,000,000 people around the world to help with their English pronunciation. Then, we layered on leading-edge speech recognition and machine-learning technology to create a virtual ESL teacher.

Listen to the Blue Canoe difference for yourself.

Benefits for Business

Work with us to help your employees speak more effectively with customers and colleagues, focusing on the vocabulary they use most often.

  • Increase customer satisfaction
  • Improve response times
  • Encourage team sharing of ideas
  • Increase employee loyalty

Benefits for Learners

Play Blue Canoe to learn the secrets to pronouncing English clearly, and stop having to repeat yourself.

  • Build confidence
  • Play engaging games
  • Get feedback anytime, anywhere
  • Track your progress
  • Move ahead in your career


Blue Canoe is the English pronunciation expert. It works by overcoming the brain’s resistance to perceiving new language sounds by using other “muscles” in the brain to help. We make it fun to practice, detect the errors that matter, and provide personalized brain-friendly tips for quick progress.

icon Using a color and a symbol - such as BLUE MOON or GREEN TEA - for each of the 14 English vowel sounds helps your brain to remember them.
icon Using your hand to highlight stress - the key syllable in a word - is like turning on a switch in your brain, and helps to pronounce the words correctly.
icon The repeating rhythm of the key English vowel sounds will help your brain learn the sounds and discover how to pronounce new words.

Why is speaking English so hard?

Two billion people are learning English worldwide. There are thousands of schools and programs to help, and many students become relatively fluent in reading and writing. However, few succeed in the “last mile” to speak and be easily understood. Why?

  • Spoken English is very different from written English
  • Our adult brains stop us from hearing new language sounds. Literally.
  • As a result, the standard English teaching method of “listen and repeat” usually fails

Latest News

Read about Blue Canoe in the news

Blue Canoe raises $2.5M to help people speak English with the assistance of artificial intelligence

Blue Canoe, a Bellevue, Wash. startup that makes an app for learning English, just raised $2.5 million in seed funding. Lots of tools help people learn English, but Blue Canoe says it is a little different. The B2B startup sells to English training institutes and companies with global workforces that need their employees to be […]

Read more
“I tried online English training – Core NEI + Blue Canoe” [a Journalist’s report]

In recent years, many online English conversation services and speech recognition apps have appeared, making it easier to practice speaking. However, there may be many people who started somehow because of its simplicity and quit without feeling the effect. EdTechZine‘s editorial staff tried a couple of online English training services for companies to explore such […]

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Bellevue startup uses artificial intelligence to help English learners’ pronunciation

While the familiar idiom “you say tomayto, I say tomahto” is meant to showcase the triviality of differences, the irony lies in its illustration of the wide variation in English pronunciation. Such vagaries in pronunciation can make English difficult for many nonnative speakers unused to pronouncing certain sounds. English is a stress-based language, meaning that […]

Read more



We are experienced entrepreneurs and leaders who have a vision of how we can use technology to help non-native English speakers change their lives and careers by improving their pronunciation and English communication skills.

Tony Andrews
Tony Andrews

CTO and Co-founder

Tony is a visionary and expert architect and technology leader. Microsoft, Performance Phones, Netwise, Array Technology

    Josh Baxley
    Josh Baxley

    Software Engineer

    Josh is a wizard at mobile development. Moment, Contour, Inrix                                                                                                                        .

      Sarah Daniels
      Sarah Daniels

      CEO and Co-founder

      Sarah is an experienced leader and serial entrepreneur. Trulia, Market Leader, Dreambox Learning, Aventail

        Matthew Elsea
        Matthew Elsea

        Director of Product Design

        Matthew is a product and design leader driven by user research and data. Geocaching HQ, Murray Franklyn.

          Laura McIndoo
          Laura McIndoo

          ESL Educator and Game Designer

          Laura is the brains behind Color it Out! and a veteran ESL teacher. English Language Training Solutions, Central New Mexico Community College

            Amit Mital
            Amit Mital

            Co-founder and board member

            Amit is CEO and Founder of Kernel Labs, and an experienced high tech exec and innovator. Symantec, Microsoft

              Michael Rawding
              Michael Rawding

              VP of Global Business Development

              Michael is a dynamic global business executive with extensive strategic sales and operational expertise in Asia. Microsoft Greater China, Microsoft Japan, Microsoft Asia, Washington State China Relations Council

                Karen Taylor
                Karen Taylor

                Board Member, Head of Education Team

                Karen is the creator of the Color Vowel System and a world-class ESL educator. English Language Training Solutions, American University

                  Andrei Villasana
                  Andrei Villasana

                  Software Engineer

                  Andrei is an experienced full-stack developer with expertise in mobile development. Smashing Ideas/ReachNow, Best Buy

                    Dr. Xiaoyun Wang
                    Dr. Xiaoyun Wang

                    Speech and ML Scientist

                    Xiaoyun is an expert in speech and machine learning, with leading innovations in 2nd language learning. Doshisha, UCLA, Nanyang Tech.

                      Penny Williams
                      Penny Williams

                      VP of Marketing

                      Penny drives awareness, sales and customer success at high-tech companies. Outreach, Trulia, Market Leader, DDB, Rapp

                        Get In Touch

                        ENGLISH-LANGUAGE TRAINING COMPANIES: Want to offer Blue Canoe to your learners?

                        BUSINESSES: Want to provide Blue Canoe to your employees?

                        CAREERS: We are always looking for outstanding and trustworthy people.
                        Click here to view current openings >

                        Find us at: 500 108th Ave NE Suite 1100, Bellevue, WA 98004