Spotify has officially announced the weather on its Car Thing dashboard accessory.
The portable media player, which only went on sale in February this year, was intended to help older car owners – that is, those without access to CarPlay or Android Auto – enjoy Spotify in their vehicles via Bluetooth or Car. Thing’s 3.5mm aux cable included.
When synced, the device displays Spotify songs, podcasts, playlists and other content for selection using Car Thing’s touch controls, dial, four physical buttons or built-in voice assistant. Spotify announced the decision to end its production in a new earnings report (opens in new tab).
The audio giant said “various factors” – including customer demand and supply chain issues (for Engadget (opens in new tab)) – were to blame for the Car Thing demise, and it’s not hard to see why more customers didn’t rush to buy the $89.99 (about £75/AU$130) device.
Most modern cars come equipped with CarPlay and/or Android Auto functionality as standard, and even those that don’t typically include the Spotify app in their proprietary infotainment systems.
In addition, owners of so-called older vehicles that Does want to listen to Spotify on the go are, in all likelihood, just as happy to set up their phones and use Bluetooth or an aux cable as they are buying a cheaper third-party media player that works in exactly the same way as the Car Thing.
Essentially, then, Car Thing is dead because Spotify never found out who the product was for — but those who still enjoy buying one need fear. Spotify is still selling remaining shares of Car Thing through its official website (opens in new tab) (for nearly half the price as well), and the company said that “existing devices will work as expected” (for TechCrunch (opens in new tab)).
Support for the Car Thing is unlikely to persist much longer, so we’d only suggest picking one if you’re an avid collector of weird Spotify stuff.
In its aforementioned investor report, Spotify said the decision to call Car Thing cost the company €31 million (about $32 million). However, the music streaming giant’s more general shift to audiobook and podcast content continues to grow its free and paid listener bases – and eliminating the Car Thing deadweight will likely allow Spotify to broaden its focus on products in that really specializes (read: audio software, not audio hardware).
For more Spotify-related news, check out our Spotify reports. company expansion of a popular social resourceit is new Supergrouper playlist tool, and yours under the radar karaoke mode.