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Spotify’s voice-controlled ‘Car Thing’ device reappears



Illustration for the article titled Spotify's Voice 'Car Thing' Device Surfaces Again Again

Photo: Martin Bureau / AFP (Getty Images)

Spotify’s long reputation Car Thing device has reappeared – this time in some iOS code.

Spotify first announced that it tested a “voice-controlled music and podcast device” called Car Thing back in 2019. Spotify was quite specific at the time that “the focus is still on becoming the world’s leading audio platform – not on making hardware,” though FCC filing from earlier this year, it certainly seemed to indicate that Spotify has at least messed with the device’s design, as in its mockup in 2019 it looked different from the one depicted in FCC archive images.

In addition, the language stated in a confidentiality statement that the company had “made great efforts to develop this product, and it is one of the first of its kind in the industry. Having the professional information readily available for “competition” will reject the advantage they have gained by developing this product. Failure to protect the details of the design will lead to financial difficulties. “Even if it’s just a formality, the request certainly sounds as if the company had actually invested a lot in Car Things’ development.

Illustration for the article titled Spotify's Voice 'Car Thing' Device Surfaces Again Again

Picture: FCC

Pictures that seem to depict Car Thing shared by Steve Moser it Twitter and reported by MacRumors has reportedly appeared in the Spotify app’s iOS code. These images show a horizontally oriented smartphone screen with a knob and buttons. It looks very much like an image in FCC filing. It is expected to connect via Bluetooth.

Initially, Car Thing was available as a limited test with a “small group” of premium Spotify users invited to participate. The company said in 2019 that it was developed “to help us learn more about how people listen to music and podcasts,” but also noted that other products such as “Voice Thing” or “Home Thing” could be similarly developed to understand how subscribers use the platform.

Spotify did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the recent photos and plans for Car Thing, but we will update if we hear back.




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