×

Sonos Tipped to Release Portable Speaker With Bluetooth Support

Smart speaker maker Sonos is getting ready to release its first-ever portable product with Bluetooth connectivity, according to multiple leaks. The speaker was first tipped in a FCC filing late last week, and Zatz Not Funny was able to unearth an image of the device (pictured above) as well.

The company has a press event scheduled for later this month, and executives told investors on the company’s most recent earnings call that it would unveil new products in September. Sonos did not immediately respond to a request for comment Monday morning.

Sonos has long stayed away from adding Bluetooth to its products, and instead focused on Wifi connectivity. Executives have in the past argued that Bluetooth offered a subpar user experience, cutting out when out of reach of a paired device.

The new speaker is said to have a switch that allows users to alternate between Wifi and Bluetooth, according to The Verge. This would allow consumers to use Wifi when at home, and then switch to Bluetooth when they take the speaker on the go.

The speaker is also expected to include far-field microphones for voice control, and offer the ability to automatically tune music output to the acoustic qualities of the room they’re placed in — a feature that’s similar to that of Apple’s HomePod and Google’s Home Max smart sound.

Sonos executives have for some time talked about their desire to build products that could be used out of the home. Introducing such a portable speaker with Bluetooth support this year does make a lot of sense for the company: Just this month, Sonos rolled out a massive collaboration with Ikea, with the furniture giant selling entry-level Sonos speakers for as little as $100.

Thanks to that collaboration, Sonos has a chance to massively expand its potential customer base. These new consumers may have different expectations for Sonos products, and are more likely to compare them to higher-end portable Bluetooth speakers.

In addition to the portable speaker, Sonos is expected to announce at least one additional product. It will also be interesting to see how Sonos will price these new devices. Sonos speakers are manufactured in China, and on the company’s most recent earnings call, executives seemed resigned to the fact that they will face tariffs of 10% starting on September 1.

 

Popular on Variety

More Digital

  • Ann Sarnoff Warner Bros

    Ann Sarnoff Formally Takes Reins of Warner Bros. as CEO

    The Ann Sarnoff era at Warner Bros. has begun. Sarnoff formally took the reins as Warner Bros. chair-CEO on Thursday, two months after she was appointed to the post. Sarnoff told employees in a memo that she has been impressed by the company’s track record during the past year amid a period of upheaval for [...]

  • YouTube TV Adds Subscription Options for

    YouTube TV Adds Subscription Options for AMC Networks' Acorn TV, UMC

    Google’s YouTube TV now offers two more add-on channels to subscribers, under an expanded pact with AMC Networks: British TV service Acorn TV and UMC (Urban Movie Channel), which features a selection of black TV and film titles. Acorn TV’s add-on channel is now available via YouTube TV for $6 per month and UMC is [...]

  • homepod-white-shelf

    Apple Said to Prep Cheaper HomePod for 2020

    Apple is getting ready to introduce a cheaper version of its HomePod smart speaker in 2020, Bloomberg reported Thursday. The company is also working on a new version of its AirPod headphones for next year, according to Bloomberg. Apple didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment. The new version of the HomePod is said [...]

  • Eminem’s Publisher Sues Spotify, Claiming Copyright

    Eminem’s Publisher Sues Spotify, Claiming Massive Copyright Infringement

    Eminem’s publishing company Eight Mile Style filed a major copyright infringement lawsuit against Spotify late Thursday, claiming that the streaming giant has no license to host about 250 of Eminem’s songs, while also taking aim at the Music Modernization Act, the federal law enacted last year to improve royalty payments for songwriters. The news was [...]

  • iQIYI headquarters building in Beijing

    China’s iQIYI in Talks for Indonesia Expansion

    Chinese streaming firm iQIYI is in negotiations to expand further into Southeast Asia through a venture with Indonesia’s Media Nusantara Citra. iQIYI announced its first step outside Chinese-majority territories in June, when it revealed a linkup in Malaysia with pay-TV leader Astro. It also operates in Taiwan. In April, the company said that it planned [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content