In a blog post published earlier today, Sonos announced that it would be pulling support for several of its older products starting this May. This will directly affect six “legacy” products, including the first-generation Play:5 that was released in 2009, and the original Connect and Connect:Amp, both of which were released in 2006 and sold until 2015. Sonos’s various Zone Players, CR200 and Bridge will also be affected.
So what does this mean?
If you own one of these Sonos legacy products, none of them will suddenly stop working. In fact, they’ll likely continue to work just the same as they have been for years. The Sonos announcement means that these products will no longer receive software updates. And they won’t be able to update with new features. Essentially, if Sonos suddenly starts supporting a new streaming service or adopts a new kind of wireless streaming protocol, its legacy products will not be able to support it.
There is another big trickle-down effect to this announcement, however. If you do own one of these affected legacy products and it’s integrated into a sound system with Sonos’s newer products, those newer products won’t be able to receive software updates or new features, either. You’ll have to “de-group” them so that those newer products can be updated.
Sonos pulling support for some of its older products is definitely frustrating, mostly because it kind of damages one big aspect of what the company is known for: Sonos has always supported its older products. That said, the announcement actually is not all that surprising.
Many of Sonos’s older products have been unable to be updated with the newest features, such as support for AirPlay 2, simply because they lack the necessary hardware. The Play:1, Play:5 (original) and Playbar fall into this category. And Sonos has very much shifted gears in the last few years, becoming less of a “walled garden” and open to supporting other services, like Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant compatibility. And these new features simply require products to have newer, faster and better hardware.
Of course, Sonos is offering customers a little get-out-of-jail card — and that’s the Sonos Trade Up program. This allows you to trade-in an eligible older Sonos product and gets 30-percent off a new product.
Sonos has yet to specify the exact date that it plans to stop supporting these older products. Right now, it’s just “May 2020.”
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