As of Q4 2021, Spotify had 180 million Premium subscribers across the globe. Its in-car entertainment system, Car Thing, has been in the works for a while, and now, it is made available to users in the US for just $89.99.
The initial tests on Car Thing started back in 2019. Later last year, it had a limited public release, and now, it is available across the US. There are some caveats, though. You need to have a Premium account to use Car Thing, and your phone must be nearby for it to work.
You may ask, why should you go for Spotify’s Car Thing when you have access to Apple’s CarPlay, Android Auto, or other methods to listen to music? The answer is simple – many drive older models of vehicles and lack access to in-built infotainment systems, and Spotify’s car feature is a boon for them. With Car Thing, you can easily access Spotify on your phone and listen to your favorite songs or podcasts. This can be done by quickly by saying “Hey Spotify” voice commands, or simply tapping the touchscreen, turning the dial, or clicking at the preset buttons at the bottom.
There are differences between its limited release in 2021 and the current launch. Future updates will include a new Night mode feature, dims the screen’s brightness in the evening, and an Add to Queue command, which lets users queue up their favorite music and podcasts by simply using their voice. While it was a pink box once, the current one is a shade of green.
“We developed Car Thing because we saw that our users desired a more seamless and personalized in-car listening experience, no matter the year or model of their vehicle. With Car Thing, even more audio fans can access Spotify’s entire catalog of music and podcasts across an even wider range of vehicles,” Spotify said in a statement.
For $89.99, you get a power cable, power adapter, the device itself, and a variety of mounts. You can install Car Thing by mounting it on the dash, onto the CD player, or on a vent (courtesy of its small magnetic puck). Install the mount where you want, and press the button on the puck to push it onto the mount.
Connect one end of the USB cable into the Car Thing and the other into the power adapter. Connect the adapter to the port, and start the car. Once that is done, connect your phones to the speakers of your car, since Car Thing cannot access the car stereo. If this cannot be done, then Car Thing will play songs through your phone’s speakers. Next, Connect Car Thing to your phone via a QR code or using the Spotify app, so that it can stream the music over the sound system of the car. Now, you are all set to utilize Car Thing to the fullest!