App review by
Kim Alessi, Common Sense Media
aXylophone App Poster Image
Sparse xylophone app sounds good but is limiting.

Parents say

No reviews yetAdd your rating

Kids say

No reviews yetAdd your rating

Did this review miss something on diversity?

Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive, diverse representations in books, TV shows, and movies. Want to help us help them? Suggest a diversity update

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this app.

Educational Value

Kids can learn basic xylophone performance and, to a limited extent, elementary musical concepts such as pitch, intervals, and aural skills. aXylophone can stimulate creativity, increases coordination, and encourage concentration and experimentation. There's a brief text description of the xylophone's origins, construction, etc., located in the info button (bottom right corner of the screen) so kids can learn more about the instrument's history and design. While aXylophone's seven-bar construction is limiting, its simple design gives players of all ages and abilities an easy, uncluttered, basic musical experience. 

Ease of Play

The app's xylophone bar interface and is very easy to use, especially for little hands or those with fine motor skills issues. Just note that the xylophone won't play if you keep your fingers on the bars. Instead, be sure to tap a key and move your finger off the screen.

Violence & Scariness
Sexy Stuff
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that aXylophone is a barebones xylophone music app that kids play freestyle. The interface has seven easy-to-play bars that are polyphonic (two or more bars can be played at the same time) and chromatic (tuned to the white keys on a piano). The app's tonal quality is authentic and sounds good. But oddly, aXylophone doesn't span a complete octave -- it runs from Middle C to the B below the octave above Middle C, which limits the overall playing range and learning potential. You'll be satisfied with this app if you want a very simple xylophone experience or for playing songs like "Mary Had a Little Lamb," "Hot Cross Buns," "Twinkle Twinkle," and "Lightly Row." But that's about it. If you want greater functionality or more keys, you'll be happier with a different xylophone or piano app. 

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say

There aren't any reviews yet. Be the first to review this title.

There aren't any reviews yet. Be the first to review this title.

What's it about?

AXYLOPHONE is a straightforward, simple xylophone music app. The app sounds authentic and has good tone whether it's played through a device's speakers or headphones. Kids open the app, press the play arrow, and are presented with a seven-bar xylophone interface. The bars are vertical, like a piano keyboard, and wide so they're easy to play. Kids tap the bars to play the xylophone, which sounds a pitch. The app is fine for a simple musical experience, but it's limiting because the tones don't span a complete octave.

Is it any good?

With aXylophone, what you see is what you get. It's uncomplicated, virtually effortless to maneuver through and play, with one screen, and that's all. The app's sound quality is good and the interface plays like a real xylophone, minus the mallets (kids must tap and release the bars, otherwise it won't make a sound). The app's ideal for little hands, or for those with varying learning and motor skill abilities.

But aXylophone is very limited. The main shortcoming is that it only has seven bars and doesn't even span an octave (which is eight bars). Kids are shortchanged one essential bar (or pitch) and can't experience the tonal pattern of a complete scale. There's no in-app recording or playback, but it's hard to hold that against this app because it's free and it is what it is -- a simple, simulated xylophone experience that sounds good and is easy to use. If you want something with more functionality, you'll pay a bit for it. But you'll likely get that eighth and very essential tone (if not more), which improves the musical experience immensely.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Point out neighbor notes and skipping notes. These are the musical intervals known as 2nds and 3rds and are essential parts of every song.

  • Try to figure out simple songs like "Mary Had a Little Lamb" and "Hot Cross Buns."

App details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love music and creativity

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

See how we rate

About these links

Common Sense Media, a nonprofit organization, earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes when you use our links to make a purchase. Thank you for your support.

Read more

Our ratings are based on child development best practices. We display the minimum age for which content is developmentally appropriate. The star rating reflects overall quality and learning potential.

Learn how we rate