Yesterday, Sonos announced that it is ending support for some of its older legacy products from May this year and those devices will no longer receive updates or new features.

The speaker specialist added that the decision was taken as a result of the hardware being "stretched to its technical limits in terms of memory and processing power" and offered a 30% discount to the customers to upgrade their Sonos speaker to a newer model, such as the Sonos Move or second-generation Play:5.

Which devices are losing support?

The company announced via a blog post that it was pulling the plug on the following devices:

  • Original Zone Players, Connect, and Connect:Amp (launched in 2006; includes versions sold until 2015)
  • First-generation Play:5 (launched 2009)
  • CR200 (launched 2009)
  • Bridge (launched 2007)

Sonos' announcement sparks user outrage

Although it is understandable that all hardware comes with a limited shelf life and will eventually struggle to keep pace with newer software, there has been outrage that a multi-room Sonos speaker setup, which comprises of even one of the affected devices, which work alongside the newer devices, will also not receive updates. Simply put, newer speakers will also not get new features if users choose to keep their old devices up and running.

Sonos Play 1 Wireless Speaker
Sonos Play 1 Wireless Speaker Wikimedia

Several Sonos customers reacted angrily to the company's announcement, complaining that they've invested hundreds of dollars on their Sonos speaker setup in their homes over the years, and the company's decision leaves them no choice but to either split their system apart, let their old speakers die or shell out more money to trade-in their older devices for newer speakers.

Social media rage

Richard Street told the BBC he spent close to $1,300 on two Play 5 speakers and even with the upgrade discount he believes it would cost him around £700 to replace the products. "This is money my family and I just don't have," he told the publication.

Many of them took to social media platforms such as Twitter and Reddit to express their anger over Sonos' decision, with some even calling for a boycott of the company's products using the hashtag #SonosBoycott.

"Some people have thousands invested in "legacy" products," wrote one user. "Did they really think people would be satisfied with a 30% discount to upgrade their entire system?" Check out some of the posts below:

Sonos CEO issues a letter of apology

After receiving widespread criticism over its decision, Sonos CEO Patrick Spence issued a letter of apology and clarified that older speakers will continue to work May onwards. "All Sonos products will continue to work past May," Spence wrote on Twitter, attaching a letter posted to the Sonos website.

Irregular updates

He also assured customers that legacy products will continue to operate normally even if they are not regularly updated with new software and features. "While legacy Sonos products won't get new software features, we pledge to keep them updated with bug fixes and security patches for as long as possible," he noted.

However, that was not enough to convince users, as you can see in a tweet posted by a loyal Sonos customer below:

@HSchmidtGER / Twitter
@JohnFra47293687 / Twitter
@robgreer / Twitter
@PaulCol98945812 / Twitter
@Patrick_Spence / Twitter
@alastairadam / Twitter