Spotify finally finds an automotive home

At Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain, Ford announced that Spotify will now be compatible with its Sync AppLink system, joining a host of other music apps.

Wayne Cunningham Managing Editor / Roadshow
Wayne Cunningham reviews cars and writes about automotive technology for CNET's Roadshow. Prior to the automotive beat, he covered spyware, Web building technologies, and computer hardware. He began covering technology and the Web in 1994 as an editor of The Net magazine.
Wayne Cunningham
Ford Sync AppLink with Spotify
Ford adds Spotify to its roster of music apps compatible with Sync AppLink. Ford

BARCELONA, Spain--Internet music service Spotify gained more than 10 million users in Europe before its U.S. launch in July of 2011. But despite all the fanfare, no automotive integration had been announced. That all changed today as Ford welcomed Spotify integration into its Sync AppLink stable.

Spotify joins automotive standard Pandora, along with music apps Slacker, Mog, Rhapsody, TuneIn, IHeartRadio, and the Amazon Cloud Player among music apps integrated with Ford's Sync AppLink feature. AppLink gives drivers control over app on their smartphones using the car's interface, including voice command.

For Sync AppLink integration, apps must be modified using Ford's open API, and approved by Ford.

Drivers will be able to use voice command to request music by artist or album, and ask for similar music, which will play more albums from the currently playing artist. They will be able to request playlists and add tracks to a special Road Trip playlist. The car will say the name of the currently playing track when asked.

Dashboard buttons will pause and skip tracks, and drivers can save an album or artist to the radio preset buttons.

The car will also notify the driver of playlists or artists sent from friends to the Spotify inbox, then begin playback on request.

Ford's press release only specifies integration with Spotify for iPhone, and only with a Spotify Premium account.

Spotify will be the first music app for Sync AppLink when Ford launches the feature in Europe.