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Sonos announces end of software support for old speakers

Will Georgiadis
21 Jan 2020
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Owners of older Sonos products will find that functionality decreases over time, the firm says

Sonos announced today that a selection of its older speakers will no longer receive software updates as of May 2020. Owners of products purchased between 2006-2015 may find that their Sonos device is affected by what the firm describes as a gradual disruption to third-party service support and overall functionality.

More specifically, owners of the following devices will be affected by the change:

  • Zone Players (ZP80, ZP90, ZP100 and ZP120)
  • Connect and Connect:Amp
  • Play:5 (1st gen)
  • CR200
  • Bridge

Sonos explains that these so-called “legacy” devices - some of which launched before the first iPhone - have been pushed to their technical limits, and are simply no longer capable of supporting the hundreds of third-party services currently available to owners of modern Sonos speakers.

If you own one of the ageing devices above, you have two options:

  1. Continue to use your legacy device in the knowledge that, over time, it will lose support for things like Spotify, Google Play Music and Apple Music.
  2. Upgrade to a new Sonos device using the firm’s recently launched Trade Up Program.

As you can imagine, Sonos would very much prefer that you choose the second option. So much so, in fact, that the firm is offering a 30% discount to customers who choose to upgrade - with one small catch.

We have explained in more detail in this article, but the gist is simple: In order to take advantage of the Trade Up Program, Sonos customers will need to put one of their old speakers into Recycle Mode. Doing so will activate a timer that eventually bricks the entire device, rendering it unusable and therefore fit only to be recycled - or binned. Once this is done, you’ll receive your 30% discount code, valid for 21 days.

Paired with today’s announcement, the Trade Up Program marks a clear decision on Sonos’ part to abruptly and comprehensively faze out older speakers. The logic is sound - after all, technology advances at an alarming rate - although some individuals have questioned Sonos’ commitment to sustainability.

For its part, Sonos suggests that customers either recycle their legacy devices, or return them to the company itself; the firm explains that it is trying to limit the number of people who unintentionally buy outdated - and as of May, unsupported - Sonos products.

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