Keeping a child safe online is one of the hardest jobs a 21st-century parent has to face. Across millions of websites and apps, there’s something out there that your child shouldn’t be reading, seeing, or listening to. Just look at music—it’s easier than ever for kids to listen to songs that mention things that they’re just not ready for.
If you’re worried about your child’s music tastes, then give Spotify for Kids a try. This brand new alternative to the fully-fledged music streaming service locks down its music library, offering only safe and child-friendly alternatives, but just how different is it to the main Spotify experience?
What Is Spotify For Kids?
The Spotify Kids service isn’t a standalone service but is available as part of a wider Spotify Premium Family subscription (costing $14.99 a month). This puts parents in control—you can limit your children’s listening habits and restrict them to safer, family-friendly songs and music.
The service boasts thousands of songs that have been specially picked by Spotify’s own “experts” for children to listen to. Different categories are available, with music aimed for younger kids under the age of 6, as well as a category for children up to the age of 12.
It also includes controls that allow you to lock which category the account can listen to, whether it’s for older kids (under 6) or older kids (up to 12). Unlike the standard Spotify, Spotify Kids accounts are locked down—there’s no exposure to anything other than the age-appropriate, ad-free music content that Spotify selects for the Kids app.
The Spotify Kids app is only available on mobile devices—you’ll need an iOS or Android device to be able to listen to it. You’ll also need to create a Spotify Kids account, linked to your Premium Family subscription.
Is Spotify for Kids Actually Safe for Kids?
Well, as safe as it possibly can be! Spotify is following other big services like Netflix and YouTube in launching a child-friendly alternative to the main service it offers. That doesn’t always mean that the service is safe though —YouTube has faced problems, for instance, with unsafe content popping up in the YouTube Kids app.
Unlike YouTube, however, Spotify Kids content isn’t being picked by an algorithm. According to Spotify, its own team has handpicked all of the music available to children in the Spotify Kids app. There are no adstoo, so your child won’t be exposed to any outside content, either.
With parental controls that you can lock behind a PIN code, you can even set limitations on music within the app—younger kids can be kept away from music for teens, for instance.
That should mean that you can rest easy, although it’s still worth checking through the app yourself before you hand it over. If you have any concerns, check out the Spotify Premium Family terms and conditions before you subscribe to the service, too.
How To Create a Spotify For Kids Account
To create a Spotify for Kids account, you’ll need to use up one of the available slots on your Spotify Premium Family subscription. As a Premium Family subscriber, you can have up to six family members linked to your subscription.
- To start, download and install the Spotify Kids app on your Android or iOS device. When you first launch the app, you’ll need to register an account—tap Log In and sign in with your own Spotify Premium Family account first.
Only account managers can sign in, so make sure your account has the access privileges to do this. If you don’t have a Premium Family membership, you’ll be prompted to upgrade at this point.
- You’ll be asked if you’re the appropriate legal guardian for your child. Tap the checkbox, then press Continue to proceed.
- Spotify Kids requires a four-digit PIN to restrict access to the parental controls section within the app. Type this in, press OK to continue, then repeat the steps to confirm the PIN is correct.
- You’ll be able to create the Spotify Kids account at the next stage. Type in your child’s name in the box provided. You can also provide your child’s date of birth, but this remains optional—type it in if you choose to do so. Once you’re ready, tap Continue to proceed.
- As we’ve mentioned, Spotify provides two music categories for kids. Tap Audio for older kids if your child is aged between 5-12 years old (or older), or Audio for younger kids if they’re aged up to the age of 6. Tap Continue to move to the next stage once you’re ready.
- You can set an animated avatar for your child at the final setup stage. Select a character you (or your child) likes, then tap the tick button to finish the setup process.
Once you’ve selected a character avatar for your child, the account will be set up. Your child can begin using the app to play music, either by selecting a category or by using the search tool.
How To Access Spotify For Kids Parental Controls
From time to time, you may need to modify the parental control settings in the Spotify Kids app. You can do this if you want to create another Spotify Kids account, change the PIN number, change the category of music your child can listen to, or delete the Spotify Kids account entirely.
- To do this, open the Spotify Kids app and tap the character avatar icon in the top-left. From here, press the Parental Settings button. You’ll need to type the access PIN number to gain access.
- If your PIN is accepted, you’ll be able to view the various details for your Spotify Kids account. Tap Change PIN if you want to change the PIN number or tap on an account listed under Kids Accounts to make specific account changes.
- In the account settings for a Spotify Kids account, you can edit the name or date of birth set on the account using the text boxes provided. To change the music category, tap Change under the Content Settings section or tap Delete to delete the account entirely. Tap the tick button in the top-right to save any changes.
Safe Listening with Spotify for Kids
With Spotify for Kids, you can be sure that your child doesn’t suddenly end up listening to adult-only content. If you’re worried about the TV, you can lock down Netflix to stop adult shows filtering through, too.
For parents, peace of mind is everything, but don’t forget to take full advantage of your Spotify Premium Family account yourself by using these little known Spotify tricks to make the most out of your favorite music streaming service.