Back in 2019, Spotify showed a test device that supposedly will study the way people use the music streaming app inside a car. It was called Car Thing and had a small display, controls, and even had support for voice commands. But what they kept saying was that this is not an actual product that will be sold on the market. But earlier this January, an FCC listing was spotted. And now, a leak on the Spotify iOS app suggests that they may have changed their mind.
9 to 5 Mac discovered this in the Spotify app’s code and is an actual updated design from the ones that we previously saw. The renders show a large rectangular display, a big control knob, and a smaller button below it. It matches some of the details indicated in the FCC filings that were spotted back in January, which also mentioned buttons and voice controls. The description of the device says it’s an accessory for Spotify users that want to connect to their car’s bluetooth sound system.
This may indicate that this is not just a test device anymore but may possibly be an actual car accessory for consumers. For two years, we have not heard from Spotify if they were planning to launch this hardware after they initially said it was just a tool that they were using to understand how people access their music and podcasts when in a vehicle. But there’s a possibility that what they learned is that people need a device like it to make it easier to stream the service.
Based on the information we’ve learned so far, the Car Thing device will plug in to the 12-volt outlet and connect to the car similar to the phone mount. Other than that and the renders spotted, there doesn’t seem to be much details leaked, like if the only purpose of the device is to stream Spotify or if there will be other functions. It doesn’t seem to need connection with other devices like a smartphone but if it will actually be released, we’ll find out more later on.
The question of course is if this is something that people actually need. If you have Spotify on your smartphone, then it’s already pretty easy to connect to your car’s infotainment system or you can even just stream it directly. The price point will also be a consideration of course. Well, we still don’t know if it will happen at all so we’ll just have to wait a few more months.