06.09.19

Sonos moves outside of the home

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Sonos makes its first step outside of the home with Sonos Move, the company’s first portable speaker.

Designed to have the same quality and performance levels as the rest of the Sonos product range, the Move takes it one step further by giving consumers the option of having a speaker that can be taken with them anywhere. 

Move is a battery-powered speaker that produces the same sound quality indoors and outdoors, with the help of the new automatic Trueplay technology. 

Introduced with this speaker, automatic Trueplay enables the speaker to automatically tune itself to whatever environment it is in. 

The Move can be used as part of the Sonos ecosystem in the home, pairing with other Sonos products using its powerful wireless range.

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When Move is on the go, users can play their music with Bluetooth audio streaming, making it simple to play audio directly from a phone or tablet.

The casing is designed with a comfortable hand slot, so it is easy to carry around, while the shadow-black avoids discolouration from the sun. 

Making it even more durable, the speaker has been tested in different environments. With a slightly weighted, silicon base, the speaker maintains stability and durability. However, if it is knocked over, the speaker has been tested to withstand being dropped on concrete from around arm’s length. 

For use in almost any outdoor environment, the speaker’s durable exterior has been tested to withstand falls, bumps, rain and moisture, dust and dirt, UV and extreme temperatures, and features a rating of IP56. 

Move’s battery allows for up to ten hours of continuous play on a single charge to ensure it will last when on the move. When at home, it can be docked in a small, discreet charging base. Suspend mode, which is automatically enabled when not in use or by tapping the power button, reserves the batter for up to five days. 

The Sonos Move features support for both Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa to enable voice control of audio. It also connects to more than 100 streaming services and can be controlled through the Sonos App, with AirPlay 2, or directly from music service apps.

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Giles Martin, head of sound experience at Sonos, said: “We needed to design a tweeter that would give wide dispersion and ensure good sound quality outdoors as well as indoors. We worked closely with the design team and told them what we required; it needs to be waterproof, it needs to have good battery life and not consume too much power. And that’s how you end up with a design. 

“It’s great that we have microphones already as we have voice control. But we said let’s use those microphones to make sure its adaptive,” he continued. “I was surprised how quickly our technical team managed to turn this around because it’s complicated, it’s not an easy thing to do. But it works and that’s what makes it sounds great indoors and outdoors.”

The Sonos Move is available globally from 24th September for £399.

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The Sonos Move has a comfortable carry-handle design.

Also launched at IFA 2019 in Berlin is the Sonos One SL which replaces the Sonos Play:1. 

The smart speaker delivers the same sound expected of Sonos products, but without built-in microphones. Responding to listener’s feedback, there was a requirement for a smart speaker without built-in voice integration. 

One SL connects to more than 100 streaming services which can be controlled with the Sonos App, Apple AirPlay 2, and music service apps. 

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The Sonos One SL. 

Sara Morris, product manager, Sonos explained: “The Sonos One SL features the same sound, the same control though the app and AirPlay, etc, except it has no microphones on board. The reason we did that is we listened to the customer and how they are using the products. And we discovered that in some instances, for example a stereo set up, there isn’t the need for voice integration. So in this case, we really wanted to deliver that concept of freedom of choice. So we have given customers a solution that costs a bit less but sounds the same.”

The compact design, available in all-black and all-white, features two Class-D amplifiers as well as the original Sonos Trueplay technology to ensure perfect tuning for any room. It can be paired with Sonos One or another One SL in the same room for stereo separation and more detailed sound. A pair of One SL’s can also be used as rear home cinema surrounds with Playbar, Playbase, or Beam. 

The One SL is available globally from 12th September priced at £179. 

The final release for Sonos is the Sonos Port, bringing sound from any source to any speaker. The successor to the original Connect, Port delivers richer sound and extends Sonos’s sound platform to traditional audio equipment. 

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The new Sonos Port. 

Cullen Harwood, global product marketing manager – architectural, Sonos demonstrated: “The Port is a refresh to the Sonos Connect and we have made three major differences. The first is we have updated the digital to analogue converter to give a better sound stage and a better sound quality that on the previous Connect.

“Secondly, we have added a 12-volt trigger to allow you to hook Port up to an existing amplifier or receiver and with the press of one button on the app it will turn it on and set it to the right input and volume.”

He continued: “The third major update was a colour change to black, and we made it so it will fit in a one rack unit space.”
 
Designed with the professional installer community in mind, Port features a versatile design and matte black finish to seamlessly fit on a shelf or stacked in an AV rack. 

Port will be available in limited quantities from 12th September, with broad global availability starting January 2020. It is priced at £399.