iPod for the home

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SONOS, a young American audio manufacturer, has entered the UK market with a wireless music system which offers good crossselling opportunities for the independent.

The decline of traditional home audio products and the great popularity of personal and portable audio players, led to the emergence of a new generation of audio products which facilitate access to large music libraries of MP3 owners – in the home environment.

The distinctive feature of the Sonos wireless audio system, designed to replace the traditional stereo system, is its ability to play music in up to 32 zones/rooms in the house – the same song in different rooms or different songs in each room. Its USPs also include the fact that it is very easy to install. It is operated with a controller, with a large graphic display (pictured), which allows users to make selection of music and to ‘programme’ it around the house. The system plays major audio formats, such as MP3, WMA, AAC, Apple Lossless and others. It can be connected to a radio, CD and MP3 players and a PC storing the owner’s music collection.

The basic two-zone package consists of the controller and two zone players: ZP100 – which is amplified and connected to a PC – and ZP80 which can be connected to an existing amplified audio system. More zones could be added as required.

From the retailer’s prospective, the Sonos system offers a great potential for further sales of additional zones, speakers, hi-fi equipment and music ripping services. “It is like an iPod for the home, in many respects,” comments Mike Edwards, Sonos country manager.

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