Spotify‘s in-car hardware device, the ‘Car Thing’ is officially available to buy in the US.
The gadget, priced at $89.99, is Spotify’s first-ever music-listening hardware.
Car Thing is an in-car listening device and player that features a dial to browse, select, play and pause content, a 4″ touchscreen and four preset buttons for shortcuts.
Car Thing enables listeners to play music and podcasts using ‘Hey Spotify’ voice commands, taps, turns, and swipes of the touchscreen, and scrolling using the built-in dial.
Spotify says the Car Thing provides a “more seamless” and “personalized” in-car listening experience, allowing users to access Spotify’s entire catalog of music and podcasts across a range of vehicles.
For the time being, Car Thing is only available for Spotify Premium users.
In the near future, however, its software is due to be upgraded, which will allow for third party services such as Audible to also be accessible on the device, says CNET.
The Car Thing was launched in Beta last year, and upon its release, more than 2 million people signed up for its waiting list.
At the time of the beta launch, the device was anticipated to cost $79.99.
The beta launch came two years after initial reports said that the streaming company was building an in-car music player, in tandem with tech company Flex.
Spotify first confirmed that it was testing a voice-controlled, in-car audio device in May 2019 with a small group of Spotify Premium users.
“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.”
Said Spotify in a blog post announcing the news: “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. “Music Business Worldwide