Amazon Music's new Car Mode wants you to use more Alexa, less touch

Amazon Music Car Mode
Amazon Music Car Mode (Image credit: Amazon)

What you need to know

  • Amazon today launched a new Car Mode for its Android app.
  • Once enabled, users gain easier access to Alexa and customizable preset playlists.
  • It's available on the latest version of the Amazon Music app for all price tiers.

Amazon is making it easier and safer to use the Amazon Music app when you're on the move. It's doing this via a feature called Car Mode that's debuting on Android with the latest version of Amazon Music (so that's version 17.7.4).

Once this update is rolled out, you can connect to your car's Bluetooth to enable this. Once enabled, users will have more Alexa hands-free functionality in the app. This is so you can speak more and keep your eyes and hands both focused on driving. As for the interface itself, it'll now feature that there's larger text, larger pictures, more swipe gestures, and less of a focus on searching and selecting new songs. Instead, you'll find customizable presets to give you easy access to the music you enjoy the most.

Writing via email, an Amazon spokesperson said:

When customers connect to their car using Bluetooth, Car Mode will enable larger text, customizable presets, and continued ease for voice assistance with Alexa through the Amazon Music app that customers already enjoy today. Car Mode also makes it easy for drivers to discover new music by leveraging default music options, including albums, stations and playlists, designed to limit extensive browsing while driving.

If there's no Bluetooth in your car, users can also enable car mode manually. Amazon (and common sense) would prefer that you use Alexa while driving while only using the graphical interface for occasions where it is safe to do so, think traffic stops. The company warns that using the app actively while driving could result in "serious injury, death, or property damage", so there's your 'duh' warning. You should use your phone more like an Amazon Echo or other Alexa Speaker rather than a smartphone, seems to be the thinking with this feature.

Car Mode is available today to all Amazon Music price tiers.

Michael Allison