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Spotify's Car Thing is a smart music streaming system that covers your air vents.

This is a one-time experiment to improve your morning commute.

Image credit: (Spotify)

Spotify has revealed that its Car Thing experiment will be turned into a full-fledged product that will be available to a limited number of Spotify Premium subscribers.

Car Thing, an unfortunate name for a streaming media player, connects to your car's stereo system through Bluetooth or a 3.5mm aux cable included in the box. Car Thing is designed to work with all older vehicles that don't have CarPlay or Android Auto and rely on older head units for audio.

Car Thing syncs with Spotify and shows your favourite songs, podcasts, playlists, and trending content, which can then be selected using touch controls, the dial, four fast pick buttons, or the built-in voice assistant by saying "Hey Spotify."

When it becomes available to the general public, the player is expected to cost $79.99 (around £60, AU$100), but Spotify Premium users who sign up on Spotify's website during the limited window will be able to get one for just $6.99 (the cost of shipping in the US). Unfortunately, it's only available for a limited time in the United States, and Spotify has yet to announce global availability.

Spotify's first piece of hardware is... impressive.

Spotify announced Car Thing on its blog, stressing that the system was created in response to a problem that many of its regular users face: having Spotify play in older cars for their morning commute. As a result, don't expect Spotify to become a hardware company overnight, according to the company:

“We created Car Thing because we saw a need from our users, many of whom were missing out on a smooth and personalised in-car listening experience. Our emphasis remains on being the world's number one audio network – not on developing hardware – but we developed it because we saw a need from our users, many of whom were missing out on a seamless and personalised in-car listening experience.

“We believe that everybody should have a superior listening experience, regardless of the year or model of their vehicle,” Spotify wrote in the blog post.

Granted, smartphones can do a lot of the same things as the Car Thing, such as play Spotify music using a voice assistant over Bluetooth or a 3.5mm cable, but Spotify's player is definitely a one-of-a-kind solution that earns a lot of style points.


To help their work, Newsmusk allows writers to use primary sources. White papers, government data, initial reporting, and interviews with industry experts are only a few examples. Where relevant, we also cite original research from others respected publishers.


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