A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this app.
What parents need to know
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's it about?
Like the online version, PANDORA - FREE MUSIC & RADIO lets users create customized stations by entering the name of an artist, band, or song; it'll will then play that musician’s songs and ones from similar artists. As kids listen, they can indicate whether they like a song, and it will program the station accordingly. There are some limits: You can’t play specific songs, and you can only skip a few each hour. However, kids can easily discover new music they like through the app’s music-matching capabilities.
Is it any good?
This music streaming service offers a similar experience to its website counterpart and does what it does well All you need to do is enter an artist's name to create a station that'll play songs from that musician and similar artists and bands. (Station content is based on info from the Music Genome Project, which tracks and compares harmony, rhythm, and other song details.) You won't have the same level of control your iPod provides: Pandora - Free Music & Radio doesn't let you play specific songs, and you can only skip a few tunes an hour. But that's part of its charm. The app can help introduce you to new music in genres that you like and will fine-tune your stations if you click on the thumbs up or down icons that appear with each song to indicate your preferences.
However, users need to be aware that when you register for the app, your profile will be public, unless you uncheck a box to make it private. Altering other parts of your profile requires you to log on to the website. (If you want to hide your listening activity or block other users from commenting on your profile, you'll need to manually change those settings online.) If you don't, strangers can easily access your profile -- and, even if your profile is private, users can still find the stations you've made if they search for you using your email address.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the notes Pandora - Free Music & Radio provides about song characteristics. As they begin to recognize more characteristics, challenge kids to identify them in songs on their own.
Create playlists of music your kids may not know based on artists you like -- and have them do the same for you!
- Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, Android, Kindle Fire
- Subjects: Language & Reading: reading, storytelling
Arts: music, rhythm
- Skills: Communication: listening, multiple forms of expression
Tech Skills: evaluating media messages, social media
- Price: Free
- Pricing structure: Free (with optional, ad-free subscription $4.99/mo. or more features for $12.99/mo.)
- Release date: November 16, 2011
- Category: Music
- Size: 5.60 MB
- Publisher: Pandora Media, Inc.
- Version: 3.1.16
- Minimum software requirements: iOS 3.0 or later
- Last updated: November 11, 2020
Our editors recommend
For kids who love music
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.