Sonos will release a brand-new operating system in June

    Sonos transitioning to a brand new working system ought to come as no shock. The first Sonos merchandise got here to market greater than 15 years in the past, and till now, virtually each element has remained interoperable. That couldn’t final endlessly. What is stunning for an organization that has operated with precision and self-discipline its whole existence is how poorly it has communicated to its buyer base when, why, and the way this transition will happen. Today, we lastly get no less than some clarification on that entrance.

    A brand new Sonos working system—Sonos S2—will roll out a while in June, and a brand new controller app will include it. The firm is providing solely hints as to the enhancements the brand new OS will allow, however in a briefing final week, Sonos spokesperson Jenisse Curry mentioned it would “support higher-resolution audio and higher bandwidth connectivity.” Presumably, this implies new {hardware} will transfer past the 16-bit/48kHz audio that Sonos has for years insisted is “good enough.” It may additionally imply that the corporate is trying to help object-based codecs corresponding to Dolby Atmos and/or DTS:X.

    Michael Brown / IDG

    All newer Sonos {hardware}, such because the Move—the corporate’s first battery-powered moveable speaker—might be upgradeable to the brand new working system.

    Curry additionally mentioned the brand new OS and app may have a brand new function known as “room groups,” which allow you to outline a room containing a number of Sonos audio system and management all of them on the similar time. This may very well be very helpful for a house theater that has a soundbar, subwoofer, and satellite tv for pc audio system. Instead of grouping these audio system individually, you’d bundle them collectively and name the group “Home Theater.” She mentioned the brand new OS can even “remember frequently grouped speakers, such as ‘Upstairs,’ ‘Downstairs,’ ‘Front of House,’ and ‘Back of House,’” so that you don’t must repeatedly create these situations.

    Every new Sonos product shipped after May will run Sonos S2 completely, and newer Sonos {hardware} will robotically be up to date to the brand new OS after it launches in June. You’ll be capable to management most Sonos {hardware} with the S2 app, which might be recognized merely because the Sonos app. (The present Sonos app might be renamed Sonos S1.) As Sonos beforehand introduced, the older {hardware} listed beneath will not be appropriate with the Sonos S2 working system, and also you received’t be capable to management them with the S2 app:

    • Sonos Bridge
    • Sonos Connect and Sonos Connect:Amp
    • Sonos CR200 distant management (the even older CR100 distant was obsoleted a while in the past)
    • Sonos Play:5 (first technology)
    • Sonos Zone Player ZP80, ZP90, ZP100, and ZP120

    Sonos says its older {hardware} (now recognized as S1 merchandise) doesn’t have the processor energy or reminiscence required to run the brand new working system. If you’ve got solely S1 elements, you needn’t do something. But Curry mentioned “we do recognize that some customers will have a mix of product, so they will have four options:”

    Option 1: Remove S1 merchandise out of your system and look ahead to the brand new OS to be robotically put in in June.

    Option 2: Trade-up your S1 merchandise for S2-compatible equivalents. More on this in a bit.

    Option 3: Run your current system utilizing the S1 app. You’ll nonetheless get bug fixes and safety patches, however even appropriate elements received’t be up to date to the S2 OS. This choice received’t be obtainable endlessly, however Sonos says it would help it “for as long as we can,” so clients can hold their “music and voice services working.”

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