Tech

Sonos finally made the Bluetooth speaker everyone’s been asking for

The Roam is Sonos’ smallest, smartest, most portable, most rugged, and most affordable wireless speaker ever. It streams music via Wi-Fi and Bluetooth so there’s no compromise on sound or battery life.

For years, Sonos insisted Bluetooth speakers weren’t good enough compared to its family of Wi-Fi speakers that are capable of streaming higher quality sound. Then, in 2019 Sonos caved with the Wi-Fi and Bluetooth Move speaker.

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The Move is a fine speaker, but...

At $399, it’s not a very affordable speaker. It’s also quite heavy at six pounds.

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But the winds have changed and people want a portable Bluetooth speaker that’s smaller, lighter, and less expensive. So Sonos is giving the people exactly that: meet the Sonos Roam.

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🎥: Sonos

$169

The Roam is Sonos' most affordable speaker to date.

The Roam weighs 15 ounces, one ounce under 1 pound. It’s shaped like a Toblerone but with rounded edges, silicone sides, and raised buttons for easy access.

10

The number of hours the Roam lasts on one charge.

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There are three signature features to the Roam that you won’t find on other Bluetooth speakers. First is Trueplay; this is automatic sound tuning whenever the Roam is reoriented in a new space. Auto Trueplay was introduced on the Move.

Second, the Roam can automatically switch between Wi-Fi and Bluetooth. At home, the Roam streams music via Wi-Fi for the best sound quality. When you take it with you outside, the speaker automatically switches to Bluetooth mode and pairs with your phone. It’s the best of both worlds. No fiddling with settings required.

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And third, Sound Swap lets hold move music from the Roam to the nearest Sonos speaker with a long press on the play ⁄ pause button. Sonos tells Input Sound Swap uses an ultrasonic pulse for proximity detection and connection.

How does it sound?

I have no idea. Until I get the Roam in for review there’s no way for me to judge how its sound compares to other similarly priced Bluetooth speakers like the UE Boom 3 or the Beats Pill+. I have faith in Sonos, though; its speakers are known for quality. But again, we’ll see.

Two positions, two kinds of sound

When placed vertically, the Roam’s two speakers fire a more focused sound directly in front of it. Place the Roam horizontally and the speakers automatically disperse wider sound.

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Geek stuff:

• Custom Racetrack Mid-Woofer: For clear mids and strong lows

• One tweeter: For the highs

• Far-field mic array: For echo cancellation and voice assistant activation

• 6.61 x 2.44 x 2.36 inches (168 x 62 x 60 mm)

• Shadow Black or Lunar White

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Wireless charging

The Roam charges with a USB-C cable. But if you want, you can charge it wirelessly with a magnetic charging dock ($49 sold separately) or with any Qi-based wireless charger. Charging speeds will vary for different Qi chargers and power adapters.

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Built tough

The Roam is IP67 water and dust-resistant, meaning it can be submerged under 3 feet of water for up to 30 minutes. Sonos tells Input that it’s done plenty of drop tests and even splashed all kinds of liquids, chemicals, and even condiments on the Roam to ensure it can survive them all.

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4⁄20

Pre-orders for the Roam start today with a launch on Weed Day.

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