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After Cranking Up Direct Sell, Sonos Now Wants To Rent Speakers

Sonos who has spent the past 12 months cranking up their direct sell marketing now wants to strip further revenue away from retailers by introducing an expensive new rental service called Flex.

The new service that is currently being trialled by Sonos who are struggling to make a profit despite increased online sales allows users to rent Sonos speakers on a monthly basis.

The first Sonos Flex subscription with the two Sonos One speakers costs $23 a month without GST added. To buy two Sonos One speakers outright, will cost you $538.

The second subscription with the two Sonos One speakers and the Sonos Beam costs $37 a month without GST added

The third subscription with the two Sonos One speakers, Playbar and Sonos Sub costs $75 a month without GST added.

Currently the service is being trialled in Europe and if successful in the Netherlands could soon be expanded globally to include markets such as Australia.

The move cuts out the margin that Sonos have to pay retailers with some observers claiming that if Sonos are successful other audio brands could go the same way.

All subscription options on the Sonos Flex program offer free app updates that any Sonos user would get, delivering access to the latest features, like Google Assistant voice control and Apple AirPlay 2 compatibility.

According to Sonos their Flex plans can be cancelled at any time. No questions asked.

One media Company said “At first glance, these subscription services seem a little silly, and not something that would make sense for the long term. The value of the first option can be reached after just
two years”.

When asked if they were looking into a rent-to-own option for their speakers, a Sonos spokesperson told The Verge, “We’re listening to customers throughout the program, and if that is an area of feedback, we’ll certainly look at it.”

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