Spotify’s Car Thing is a pretty handy device for Premium subscribers who don’t have a vehicle with CarPlay or Android Auto on board.
Considering how expensive the aftermarket solutions are, the $90 touchscreen accessory, which clips to the air vents, was already feeling like an essential add-on.
Now, for iPhone users initially, the Car Thing gadget is getting the ability to accept and reject phone calls and control media from other apps.
So, if you like to listen to podcasts on Overcast while driving, you’ll be able to play and control that content from the touchscreen. You can also tap the screen to return to Spotify at any time.
Meanwhile, the update also includes the ability to add additional songs and podcasts to the queue. There’s a touch command and the option to add to queue using the dial. “When you have a track highlighted, press and keep holding the dial—one press will play, while pressing and holding will add to the queue,” Spotify says.
Voice commands are also possible now, enabling users to queue songs to listen to next, or view your queue with “Hey Spotify”
It’s also possible to “Use voice to get a personalised playlist for any mood,” Spotify says. “Simply ask for any genre, mood, or activity that describes the kind of music you want to hear. For example, say “Hey Spotify, play cozy Sunday RnB,” and we’ll do our best to instantly create a personalised playlist from your request. This feature is available wherever “Hey Spotify” is available.”
There’s still no word on when Spotify will launch the handy CarThing outside the United States, but now it has rolled out to all users across the pond, we’d hope that a UK launch isn’t too far behind that.
“Bringing these highly anticipated new features to Car Thing is part of Spotify’s ongoing commitment to building a truly frictionless experience for users across devices—whether in the car, at home, or on the go,” the company says in a blog post.