Spotify’s Car Thing arrives: an alternative to CarPlay?
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Spotify’s Car Thing arrives: an alternative to CarPlay?

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With limited functionality, this device brings the streaming service into your car.

Spotify is currently the world’s number one streaming company, just ahead of Apple Music . Last year, the platform had unveiled in beta test a connected object to be installed on the dashboard of a vehicle and giving access to its entire catalog. Depending on the user’s smartphone, it connects via Bluetooth or via a USB cable. The iPhone is compatible, as are Android mobiles.

The manufacturer now sells the Car Thing (that’s its nickname) in the final version and as running alongside Apple CarPlay, which seems to mean that it won’t really replace this OS. Moreover, there are only playback controls for listening to music but no controls for calls or other applications. The only integrated software is Spotify, which is not so bad since it is advisable to limit the use of screens while driving for the sake of road safety.

Design and features

Spotify’s Car Thing allows you to navigate through your favorite albums, tracks, playlists and artists thanks to a large touchscreen display with a diagonal of four inches . To scroll through its tracks, it is also possible to use an imposing wheel located to the right of the slab. Otherwise, a voice assistant is also integrated to stay focused on traffic.

© Spotify

In terms of ergonomics, the developer has thought of an operating system with icons and texts large enough to be seen from afar: here too, an asset to avoid accidents. It is of course possible to choose the song of your choice, to play it or to pause it or to go to the next one with a single click. Ditto for your podcast library.

Almost a hundred euros!

With an official price set at 89.99 dollars (about 80 euros) , Spotify’s Car Thing is currently only available in the United States. On the other hand, it is not specified whether the European market will soon be entitled to it. To offer you the gadget, you will therefore have to go through customs and pay import taxes which can quickly increase the bill.

It should be noted, however, that this choice will always be more judicious than the much more expensive CarPlay screen from Alpine unveiled at CES if you want to bring connectivity to your vehicle without investing in a new model. What’s more, if you’re just looking to enjoy the sound of your favorite producer but GPS and SMS are not essential in your cabin, then the Car Thing is the best for you.

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