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Spotify Car Thing: Company takes €31 million hit by ending in-car entertainment device

Spotify's venture into hardware is on pause for the foreseeable future. (Image source: Spotify)
Spotify's venture into hardware is on pause for the foreseeable future. (Image source: Spotify)
The Spotify Car Thing has been killed off, just five months into its public release. Still available at a steep discount, the remaining Car Thing units will sell for US$49.99 until Spotify exhausts its supplies.

Spotify has stopped manufacturing the Car Thing, five months after the company released the device in the US. Originally priced at US$89.99, Spotify marketed the Car Thing as an affordable way to update in-car entertainment (ICE) without modifying your vehicle. Performance was disappointing though, even if the Car Thing suppressed cabin, road and vent noise better fairly well.

Currently, Spotify is offering the Car Thing for US$49.99, billed as a 'Summer Sale Special'. However, Spotify's language in its latest earnings report makes it clear that it will not replenish existing stock levels. Apparently, Spotify has taken a €31 million charge in winding up Car Thing, quite the expenditure considering the device's short product life.

According to TechCrunch, a Spotify spokesperson explained:

The goal of Spotify's Car Thing exploration was to better understand in-car listening, and bring audio to a wider range of users and vehicles. Based on several factors, including product demand and supply chain issues, we have decided to stop further production of Car Thing units. Existing devices will perform as intended. This initiative has unlocked helpful learnings, and we remain focused on the car as an important place for audio.

Ultimately, it remains to be seen for how long 'existing devices will perform as intended'. While the Car Thing works with the current version of Spotify, there is no guarantee that the company will update the device indefinitely. As Liliputing notes, existing devices will perform as intended (for now).

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> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > News > News Archive > Newsarchive 2022 07 > Spotify Car Thing: Company takes €31 million hit by ending in-car entertainment device
Alex Alderson, 2022-07-28 (Update: 2022-07-28)