Sometimes different accents are so difficult to understand, they sometimes sound like a different language all together. Originally in Beijing, many American friends couldn’t understand my Australian English accent. But after hanging out with so many for so long, my accent has become a blend where sometimes even Americans think I am American.

Since communication is such an important part of life, a new app called ‘ICANSIA American Accent for Chinese Speakers’, available on the Apple App Store, has been released to help people understand each other better. The app teaches you how to speak with a more natural American accent using speech training techniques and exercises. The accent coaching market is not very widely known, but apparently it is in demand from business people, people that want to adapt to a new country and of course actors. Perhaps it would suit Chinese students who are preparing to study in America and want to assimilate faster.

The surprising thing is that this app wasn’t even developed by a native American. It was developed by Claudette Roche, an English born accent coach who now lives in Los Angeles. Roche says her unique talent for accents was amplified by her constant surrounding of different accents including  English (Cockney, London, Manchester etc), Irish, Jamaican, Indian, Scottish, Italian, French (France, Morocco, Québec), Greek, Russian, Chinese, Polish, Canadian, New Yorkese, Lebanese. Roche is also an award winning actress and a veteran of stage and screen. She has appeared in TV shows such as The Game, Cold Case and Without a Trace.

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Jason Lim

Jason is an Australian born Chinese living in Beijing, specializing in entrepreneurship, start-ups and the investment eco-system in China, especially in the tech and social area.