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Sonos teases upcoming launch of the Era generation

Sonos today sent out an email telling folks to “Get ready for a new era of sound.” Get it? New “era?” Because that’s exactly what’s about to drop with the Era 100 and Era 300 speakers, which already have leaked in pretty good detail.

The countdown on the email points to something happening on Tuesday, March 7, and the email says to expect preorders then, too.

A Sonos email touting an upcoming launch.

The leak from The Verge’s Chris Welch essentially points to replacements for the Sonos One and Sonos Play:3 — the latter of which has been discontinued for some time now. In addition to some visual design changes, the other big differences we’ve been clued into include USB-C for line-in, Ethernet by way of an adapter, and the addition of Bluetooth support — which is a big deal.

According to the previous leak, the Era 100 is expected to retail north of $200, and the Era 300 somewhere around $450. These still are very much Sonos devices, and the sound quality should reflect that. The larger Era 300 also can be used as rear speakers in conjunction with Sonos’ Dolby Atmos-enabled Arc or Beam soundbars.

Both the Era 100 and Era 300 also will be voice-enabled, also according to the leak — you’ll recall that Sonos now has its own “Sonos Voice Control” in addition to being able to work with Amazon Alexa. And Apple’s AirPlay 2 is still in the cards, too.

What don’t we know at this point? Actual price and availability, for one (or two). That’s important. But even more important is something that no leak or marketing teaser can tell you — just how good these things are going to sound. And whether we’re right back in the same boat we’re in with the resurrected Apple HomePod: one is great, but two in a pair is even better.

And one more question we should start asking as we get closer to this new “era” of Sonos: How much longer are the older generations going to be supported? Sonos hasn’t been shy about hamstringing older setups in the name of technological function, which is the sort of thing that’ll happen when you’re trying to keep newer and older hardware working together.

Looks like we’ll find out more next week.

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