Sonos Home Theatre System Tipped Forced To Include HDMI Due To Dolby Atmos
In an effort to counter superior products from the likes of Denon, Bluesound and Harman Kardon as well as several TV manufacturers who are now delivering High Res sound bars to connect to their TV’s, Sonos has moved to launch a new home theatre speaker ahead of their IPO raising.
The unlock key to the new speaker was found in a US regulatory filing. The Sonos document said, “The model S14 is a high-performance all-in-one home theatre smart speaker and part of Sonos’ home sound system.”
This suggests that it will have integrated far-field voice control, similar to the Sonos One, which offers direct access to Amazon’s Alexa assistant. Sonos has not said whether the new speaker system will deliver High Res audio as current Sonos speakers are only able to deliver 16bit sound instead of 24bit and 32bit audio output that is incorporated into new smartphones such as the Samsung S9 as well as new Apple and HTC devices.
The device only has one HDMI port and will not support Google Voice Assist.
In the past Sonos tried room sensing to calibrate their systems, some say because of poor output in larger rooms. The sensing software would only run on an iOS device or iPhone. It was later dropped by Sonos due to a lack of interest by consumers.
Sonos entered the home theatre market when it first introduced its Playbar, and internet-connected soundbar, back in 2013, they then launched a Playbase which has had limited success.
Much of the FCC filing for the upcoming S14 was redacted, so we don’t exactly know yet how the speaker is going to look like, or which features it will offer. However, the filing does offer a few clues.
In what appears to be a strange move Sonos initially called the new device a smart speaker, but suddenly renamed it to home theatre speaker.
Sonos previously didn’t include any HDMI ports, and instead relied on optical out for digital sound. ChannelNews understands that the move to include an HDMI port was because most TV manufacturers are singing the praises of Dolby Atmos which cannot be delivered via a digital output cable.