The Spotify Car Thing is open-source… but useless

Spotify Car Thing 1080p

Remember back when Spotify ventured into the hardware market? Sorry to make you relive that trauma, but the Spotify Car Thing was an interesting device. Well, as you may know, Spotify is discontinuing it. According to a new report, the Car Thing is actually open-source, but it’s ultimately a pretty useless device.

Spotify discontinued this device a while back after very few people bought it. Those who used it thought that they would be able to keep using it for a while. However, they got the news that the company is actually deactivating these devices, making them Spotify-branded paperweights. That’s a bummer, as it’s only a few years old at this point.

The Spotify Car Thing is open-source

Devices are like eggs, you GOTTA crack into them! There are tinkerers that unlock all of the secrets hidden within the devices we use. How else did we find out that the Rabbit R1 is basically an Android app? In this case, the tinkerer is Josh Henderickson.

He was able to look under the Car Thing’s hood and discover some interesting information about it. For starters, the device’s software is actually running on an open-source Linux kernel. The source code for its U-boot is freely available on GitHub. The device isn’t running on the most complicated software, but that should have been expected. The Car Thing didn’t need to be more than a bloated web browser that navigates to

Along with that information, Henderickson was able to see the chip powering the whole show. It’s an Amlogic chip. Amlogic is a fabless chipmaker based in Santa Clara, California. He found out that the chip can run custom code.

With that information, you should expect to see Twitter posts of someone running Windows 11 on it, right? Wrong. It turns out that, while this device’s software points to it being able to run different systems, the Amlogic chip is extremely underpowered. Spotify didn’t exactly shell out for a high-powered Qualcomm chip for this device because of the Car Thing’s limited purpose.

So, it looks like there’s no afterlife for this device. It’s unfortunate because it was a promising gadget. It was a nice way to stream audio while driving safely.

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