Sonos has had a so-so 2023 financially, but the company is planning a jam-packed 2024 in order to jumpstart its recently relatively settled product portfolio. It appears that getting into the premium headphone space is going to be the way to do that.
Earlier this month, Sonos CEO Patrick Spence teased that the company would be getting into a new product category. On the company’s most recent earnings call, Spence said that next year would mark “the beginning of a multi-year product cycle” which would begin with “our entry into a new multi-billion dollar category in the second half of the year that will complement our current offering, delight customers and drive immediate revenue.”
“As we enter Fiscal 2024, we are laser focused on execution and positioning our business to return to top and bottom line growth when conditions improve. While current market conditions remain challenging, this is the beginning of a multi-year product cycle where we expect to reap the rewards of our R&D investments. This cycle begins with our entry into a new multi-billion dollar category in the second half of the year that will complement our current offering, delight customers and drive immediate revenue. We are so excited about what we have to share with the world in Fiscal 2024 and beyond.”
Well, the company might be getting into that new product category sooner than it even thought. As reported by Mark Gurman at Bloomberg, Sonos is readying the release of a $400 set of headphones as soon as April. The exact features of the headphones are still unknown but, knowing Sonos’ history, they will certainly be placed to compete with Apple’s AirPods Max as well as Sony and Bose’s popular over-the-ear headphones.
In addition to the headphones, the company is reportedly also working on a streaming box that could be released in the second half of the year and compete with other set-top boxes like the Apple TV, Fire TV, and Roku. That is rumored to cost between $150 and $200. The company is also working to release updated speakers as well as updates to its voice assistant and app.
The company is also developing new amplifiers and in-ceiling speakers aimed at professional installers, as well as a higher-end TV sound bar, new subwoofers, an update to the portable Roam speaker and a version of its Era 100 speaker for businesses. And it’s planning an updated voice control system, video service and upgraded smartphone app.
While Spotify is planning a huge 2024, the company did roll out some updates in 2023. In addition to launching the new Era 100 and Era 300 home speakers, Sonos also released the Move 2, the next generation of its big and loud portable speaker.
I’m a big fan of Sonos. If I wasn’t already deep in the HomePod ecosystem, I might consider using them as my go-to home audio setup. I do use the Roam speaker for camping, and it is a fantastic portable speaker. It looks like the company wants to control even more of your audio and video experience starting next year, and I’m curious to see what that looks like.