Are Spotify Serious With New “Car Thing’ Hardware Device?
It was tipped shortly after Spotify floated last year, now the music streaming Company is testing a new automotive voice controlled smart hardware device.
Dubbed ‘Car Thing,’ it plugs into a vehicle’s cigarette lighter and allows users to turn on their favorite playlist hands-free while they’re driving, what has not been explained is the difference between using a UEBOOM or JBL speaker or even a smartphone with voice capability to do the same thing.
The battery powered speakers or the use of a smartphone to do the same as what Spotify are trying to achieve eliminates the need to plug a device into a cigarette lighter.
The new Spotify device is currently being rolled out among a small group of test users so there no certanity that it will be commercially released.
They then can use the wake word, ‘Hey Spotify’ to turn on music.
It’s linked to their Spotify account so that it can play your personalized playlists.
A screen on the device shows what’s playing, while users can select playlists to sync up with each button.
It appears that there is no different than what I can do with my smartphone linked with my radio or an additional speaker.
Once plugged in, the device connects to a user’s phone and car using a Bluetooth connection.
The Spotify Car Thing features a small screen on the left side of the device, which shows what song is currently playing.
A set of buttons are also included next to that, where users can access preset playlists, akin to preset buttons for radio station in your car.
Spotify maintains that the tests of ‘Car Thing’ don’t mean it’s making a major move into hardware, however.
Earlier this year, reports speculated that the company could be working on some kind of in-car, voice-activated device.
‘While we know there has been some speculation about our future plans, Car Thing was developed to help us learn more about how people listen to music and podcasts,’ Spotify said.
‘Our focus remains on becoming the world’s number one audio platform—not on creating hardware.’
The tests are only taking place in the US for now, but Spotify said it could expand to additional users or into new spaces, such as the home.
The test is also limited to Spotify premium users.