The recent push toward social media platforms that embrace authenticity over curation is a good thing. Instagram might be the home of perfectly edited photos with expertly-crafted captions, but BeReal frees you up to show yourself as you really are. Kiwi wants to do the same, but for exposing your true musical taste to all your friends, and vice versa.
Kiwi turns finding and sharing music into something akin to a dating app, allowing you to swipe right on the songs you like and left on the ones you don’t. When you first join, it’ll offer a few songs for you to rate to gauge your tastes, but the real action comes once your friends start posting. BeReal lets you react to your friend’s photos, but Kiwi insists you tell them whether or not you respect their taste in music.
Similar to BeReal, when Kiwi’s notification goes off, everyone is supposed to share their last played song. Hopefully you were playing something cool, and not something embarrassing (no shame, since more often than not, Kiwi would probably catch me streaming Weezer yet again). But unlike BeReal’s “one photo a day” mentality, Kiwi encourages you to share other tunes with your friends throughout the day too.
Kiwi currently works with Spotify, Apple Music, and Deezer. That covers a lot of bases to be sure, but leaves out those of us who use platforms like YouTube Music and Amazon Music. Assuming you have one of the aforementioned platforms, though, set up is easy: Connect your streaming service to the app; choose your name, username, and a profile picture; and add your friends. (Since the app is still pretty underground, chances are you’ll have to send them an invite.) Enable notifications to ensure you receive your daily alert, and you’re good to go.
Some long-term users in the reviews, however, aren’t particularly pleased with the current state of the app. I thought the “dating app” system was neat, but they preferred the old ways of doing things, which allow you to see a history of tracks your friends shared with you. I have to agree — even if Kiwi is trying to replicate BeReal’s ephemeral nature, and only keeping the focus on the songs listened to that day, it’d be nice to have an easy way to keep track of song recommendations over time.
Still, it’s potentially a fun way to check in with your friends’ current musical obsessions once a day, whether they’re into cutting edge tracks, or jamming to the classics. (And with Apple Music Classical now out, you might just find some true oldies in the mix.)