Many parents have a hard time allowing their children access to Spotify. There are a TON of inappropriate songs and podcasts that kids can stumble across or search out within an app like Spotify.
Recently Spotify released a new app called Spotify Kids. The app has a curated selection of content that are age appropriate and you can feel good about having your kids use the application without worrying about what they might come across.
There is one catch though. In order to create a Spotify Kids account, you need to have a Premium Family plan on the regular Spotify service. We already pay for a Family plan, so it wasn’t a big deal for us. The family plan is absolutely worth it though if you have multiple family members that want to access Spotify. You can have 6 accounts on the Family Plan and it only costs $ 15 a month.
Additionally, with the family plan you can actually block explicit content for any member of the family plan, even those that aren’t specifically Spotify Kids accounts.
If you already have your Premium Family Plan, to create a Spotify Kids account for your child, download the Spotify Kids app on their device. Open the app, and sign in with the Family Plan Manager account. My one complaint about the Family Plan is that there is only one manager account. I wish you could designate another account (like the other parent) as a manager account.
After you sign in, the app will ask if the account is for a young child or an older child so it can customize the offering to the age. The two age ranges are 0-6 and 5-12. If you accidentally pick the wrong age, or you need to age them up in the future you can always change this later. It will also ask you to set up a PIN so you can get into the settings of the account.
The final step in getting Spotify Kids set up is to pick a little cartoon character to represent your child. There are several to choose from, we went with a little robot looking guy.
Now that the app is all set up, your child can start browsing through the different sections. They even have several audio books to choose from. A Harry Potter reading and Where the Sidewalk Ends by Shel Silverstein are both available through the app.
When you want to access the settings again for your child, click on their avatar at the top left corner and then click the “Grown-Ups” icon on the top right. The app will ask for the PIN you created earlier. In here you can view what your child has been listening to, change their age group and block content from their listening history.
Kids can search the app for their favorite artists, just like on Spotify, browse through soundtracks, learning songs, or stories (as previously mentioned). Really the selection is pretty vast and very well curated. This is a perfect option for younger kids who still love to listen to music.
The only thing Spotify Kids seems to be missing is the ability to create playlists. You can tap your favorite songs and access a list of your favorites that are available offline, but you can’t create a customized playlist for different things like “playing” or “going to sleep”. Overall though, it’s a really great version of the app, and I hope they continue to release features for it.