How do graduating high school students listen to online music?

niche high school students 600w

Niche, a research firm founded by Carnegie Mellon University in 2002 with a focus on early-life decision-making, has released an interesting study of media choices among graduating high school students. The research covers many categories of the online experience, including social networks and video platforms.

When surveyed about listening to music, graduating high-schoolers divulged their music-service habits. Pandora was the top choice among respondents, unsurprisingly.

The results bear some similarity to the brand-awareness research in Edison’s The Infinite Dial 2014, in which Pandora was recognized by U.S. adults more than any other online listening platform. the Niche study put Pandora use at 77%; The Infinite Dial showed 70% recognition of Pandora.

iHeartRadio and iTunes Radio came in second and third in the Edison study of awareness. The Niche study of usage put iTunes second and iHeart sixth. Rhapsody (ninth) scored lower among high school graduates than among Edison’s general population (fourth).

Nearly 50% of high-schoolers who listen to Pandora, do so at least once a day.

Brad Hill


  1. I’m surprised that a study of this nature wouldn’t include traditional radio as an option for how anyone listens to music. This is very misleading as presented.

    • Thanks for your comment. I believe the Niche organization did not intend this to be a comprehensive “share-of-ear” type of study. The listening component was part of a larger work that examined social media and online video also. The whole things was about online media choices. So, I don’t think this interesting chart is misleading within its context.

  2. I agree with Abby. The headline is misleading, and should have the word “online” added; then it would be accurate.

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