Tesla CEO Elon Musk recently revealed that streaming music service Rdio will be used as the default dashboard audio service for the company’s fleet of electric vehicles in Europe. It is big news for Rdio as the deal is their first in the integrated automotive market but some are questioning why Tesla didn’t go with a larger service instead.
The news came during a town hall meeting in Amsterdam where those on hand were told the service would function via voice commands.
Buyers in the US market have had similar functionality for quite some time through music streaming service Slacker. As Musk outlined during the meeting, however, Slacker didn’t have the licensing rights for music in Europe so they weren’t able to bring the integration abroad.
Musk then fielded a question about Spotify. He noted it was a good option and that it can be played through Bluetooth but initially, it simply wouldn’t work with them to integrate into the car. In the long term, that might change, he said.
If successful, the integration could spur similar deals from other auto makers – that is, assuming Tesla doesn’t have exclusive rights to the service for vehicles. An exclusive deal wouldn’t be the best approach for Rdio as most other vehicle manufacturers have a much larger share of the market and could generate much more exposure than Tesla can right now.
Musk said the Rdio integration will be available very soon.