Spotify's New Kids App Is Here With a Library of 8,000 Songs
Spotify Kids, a new ad-free music streaming app curated just for children, launched this week. Here's everything you need to know.
You’re home with the kids, and they want to listen to Moana on repeat for what feels like eternity. You would prefer using your Spotify Premium account to listen to the grownup songs that chill you out, and start wondering how far you’ll go just to get the kids in another room, acting out their Disney fantasies out of earshot.
That’s just one reason parents will be grateful for Spotify Kids, a new standalone music streaming app for kids ages 3 and older. The main impetus behind it is ensuring parents can trust that nothing but kid songs (or tunes that, at any rate, are totally kid-appropriate) will play on this app, and that your child won’t be singing “you're takin' shots at me like it's Patrón” the way my niece does. (But I love Taylor Swift and praise my niece for knowing that song…that’s what aunties do.)
Another great feature: The app has more than 60 hours of audiobooks and stories, including Disney tales and classic fairytales. While we encourage families to take this time to Read Together, Be Together, we also recognize that if you can buy yourself time to, perhaps, make a little dinner while your child listens to a great story via app, everybody wins.
How to Get Spotify Kids
Spotify Kids is a separate ad-free app currently available to download for customers who already pay for Spotify Premium for Family. You'll make an account with your child’s name (or nickname, if you don’t want Spotify to know their real name) and it’s optional to enter your child’s birthday, and mandatory to affirm that you are the legal guardian. Spotify reps say they will share none of that information, but they will track what your child listens to and keep offering up more of what they like.
The kid app will be free for your first month and after that is $15 a month.
Songs Offered on Spotify Kids
Spotify for Kids launches with a library of some 8,000 songs and 125 playlists but will grow from here. Everything is handpicked and curated by actual human editors, so songs are not just screened by bots for curse words but are checked by people to be sure they’re not celebrating, you know, bad behavior.
There’s a channel for young kids and one for older kids and parents can feel out which one is best for each child, up to four kids per family. In general, the young-kid section includes nursery rhymes, bedtime tunes, and silly songs, with a growing focus on bedtime content, while the older-kid section introduces more safe-for-kids pop tunes (Bruno Mars, Ariana Grande, my beloved Taylor Swift) and longer stories, like Anne of the Green Gables.
Side note: Spotify Kids changes by country and finetunes for each culture. So playlists unique to the United States include Motown, Christian, Country, Spanish-language, and Soul Dance Party. Sweet! One playlist rolling out across the globe, however, is Wash Your Hands, a list of songs all about our new and necessary health obsession.
- RELATED: 14 Best Bedtime Songs for Kids
There are no age restrictions in Spotify's new kid-friendly app; you could make an account for your 6-month-old and use it to play lullabies and nursery rhymes, keeping those off your own account so they don’t end up on your Wrapped list. But Spotify designed the app to also be used by kids starting as young as 3 who might have control of a tablet, and has made it super easy for pudgy fingers to navigate.
The only downside I see is that if your family loves to play, for instance, obscure Stevie Wonder songs like ours does, and you totally want your child to hear those, you’ll still need to do that as a family, through your adult Spotify account. You can not add songs to your child’s Spotify for Kids account; the company itself maintains total control of the music on there. But that may change as the app evolves. Spotify promises new customization features coming in the future. For now, be happy your child can have a Frozen dance party without you needing to get involved.