Streaming juggernaut Spotify has officially revealed its first official product release called Car Thing, a voice-controlled, in-car audio device available to the service’s premium users. According to Music Business Worldwide, the anticipated retail price for the device is $79.99, but the hardware will be available to select users for a limited time for $6.99 postage. Spotify users can sign up for this opportunity here.
The voice controlled features on this device will allow users to say “Hey Spotify” before requesting a song, album, artist, playlist, station or podcast. There will also be a dial to browse, select, play and pause content and four preset buttons that serves as shortcuts for favorited artists, playlists, stations and podcasts. Car Thing will also host a 4″ touchscreen and connectivity with smartphones through the Spotify mobile app and a connection to car stereos via Bluetooth, AUX or USB cable. Spotify also says that the device holds a noise suppressive mic, that works to identify a user’s voice only.
“Car Thing is built with a sturdy unibody design for durability, and its matte-textured rubber details make it easy to navigate,” the company said in a statement to Music Business Worldwide. “Car Thing’s tactile navigational controls include buttons, a dial, and a back button, all durably constructed for repeated use.”
It’s been a turbulent year for Spotify, as the Union of Musicians and Allied Workers launched protests against the company’s royalty payment practices earlier this spring. Apple Music recently commented on their own royalty concerns, claiming that they pay their artists twice the streaming rates of Spotify.