This week, the music streaming giant took the wraps off its own media player called “Car Thing,” a small, touchable, rectangle that can be mounted on your car’s dashboard and is devoted entirely to playing music and podcasts through Spotify.
Car Thing, which is available on an invite-only basis for now, has a touchscreen and several physical controls, including a dial for scrolling and selecting music, a back-and-settings button, and four top-mounted preset buttons that bring you directly to your favorite playlists or podcasts.
To sweeten the deal, Spotify is making Car Thing free to start (aside from shipping). Users can sign up here if they’re interested, though, keep in mind Car Thing is only available to U.S. customers for now and as we mentioned previously, available on a limited, invite-only basis for Spotify Premium users.
Though Spotify says Car Thing isn’t meant to compete with in-car infotainment systems, the release of dedicated Spotify-playing hardware is a fairly pointed step in that direction. According to the company, Car Thing is one part of its “ubiquity strategy” to help build a seamless experience for users across the board.