Spotify announced today that its very own Car Thing, a device that brings the music streaming app behind the wheel because how else you could listen to your favorite music, is now available for more users in the United States who are willing to spend $79.99 on it.
Don’t be fooled by this announcement. Car Thing is still in limited availability, but Spotify says it’s slowly releasing it for more users out there.
Some of those living in the United States and who previously joined the waitlist to try out Car Thing will now be allowed to purchase the device, Spotify says. Furthermore, anyone can join the waiting list, no matter if they have a free account or a premium plan, though the latter would be required to use Car Thing in the first place.
Why is Car Thing so important for Spotify, and how could it eventually replace Android Auto and CarPlay?
Car Thing is a simple device that connects to your mobile device to stream music from Spotify and then to your car’s speakers to play the tunes. In theory, you could achieve pretty much the same thing without a second device, as the phone could just pair with your Bluetooth speakers in the car and play the songs, but Spotify says this is the faster way to listen to your favorite songs and interact with the app.
In theory, Android Auto and CarPlay users who don’t care about the other extras, such as navigation and phone calls, could just stick with Car Thing for listening to their music, though it remains to be seen how many people are actually willing to make such an unexpected change.