Tech and Music for Tweens/Teens

Streaming music has become increasingly popular throughout the years with more teens streaming music over listening to FM radio. Many people have started using streaming services for the sole reason of free music. Did you know, it’s teenagers that predominantly back the streaming industry? The average teenager listens to audio music for up to 4 hours a day. Streaming services have captured nearly 31 percent of teens, quickly approaching the 42 percent who still insist on paying for and downloading music.


Pandora is the leading streaming service with more than 51 percent of internet users choosing it over anything else. Pandora offers 40 hours per month for free. Once the 40 hours are up, it’s only $.99 per month. It even offers Pandora One at only $3.99 per month for unlimited, ad-free. Teens are taking music with them wherever they go, and Pandora’s app makes it easy to take their favorite music along for the ride.

Google Play Music

Google Play Music allows users to stream music for free from any smart device. It offers an All Access account for $9.99 per month, which includes unlimited streaming through the Google Play app. If there isn’t wifi, Google Play offers the option to download music while offline. Kids music preferences are constantly changing, so this is a better alternative to buying each new Cd that hits the shelves.


Spotify is the second leading music streaming service. Spotify has a free option as well, or a premium subscription for $9.99 per month. Premium allows ad-free unlimited streaming, unlimited skips, and the ability to listen offline. Teens love this option because they have the freedom to choose any song they want to hear and create their own playlists (or listen to thousands of others). Spotify even offers the option to buy songs through iTunes.

Streaming Artists

Some artists don’t allow access to their music through streaming services. Taylor Swift and Garth Brooks are among those artists. Due to legalities, Swift doesn’t like the no payment option. Garth Brooks has a different story. He chose not to allow any streaming simply because he doesn’t need more money. (That must be nice.)

But, there are artists who allow listening and watching through YouTube. The most recent addition to the streaming world is the Beatles. Some artists like the option of streaming their music for the sole purpose of gaining new fans that will eventually pay for their concerts, apparel, and music. YouTube is only a satisfactory platform for live shows on occasion, but it can’t replace the real thing for long.

Tech has a slightly different role for parents than children. It’s how parents use tech and social media that has a significant effect on the dynamics of the family and influences the relationships between parents and children.

Many parents are guilty of using technology as a babysitter. When out to a restaurant, shopping at the mall, or attempting household chores, parents engage their children in games on a tablet or stream a movie to hold their attention. Although this may seem negative, it, in fact, can add to the chance for more communication. Follow-up questions make people use their brain to recollect prior knowledge. The same lesson can be applied when kids are involved in games or movies on their device. When the shopping trip is finished, ask children questions about what they played or what they watched. Similar to flashcards, children will have to connect and remember certain events.

Married Versus Single

The single parent community trails behind married couples in the use of technology. According to the Pew Research Center, 69 percent of single parents use technology as compared to 80 percent of married parents. This gap is credited to the simple fact of yearly income. A single parent income is typically lower than that of a married couple, forcing single parents to opt out of a costly internet bill or even the cost of owning a computer or tablet.


When they are online, single parents spend their time on games, instant messaging, or just for fun. Married couples spend most of their tech time on gathering health information, buying products for the home, and financial information. They are more likely to use technology to spend and manage their money online.

Kimberly Lewis is a graduate of Northern Kentucky University with a Bachelor’s Degree in education. She taught science at the Warren County Alternative School before choosing to continue her love of writing as a freelancer while at home raising her two children.



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