We're music fans here at Gear Live (seriously, check out the Gear Live Rdio channel!) so we wanna make sure to include great music gadgets in our 2012 Holiday Gift Guide. This year, we're kicking it off with the Sonos PLAY:3. If you're unfamiliar with Sonos, it's basically the best way to get music from just about any location (your computer, your iPhone, the web, the cloud, etc.) to play in any room in your house. It's super intuitive, and even years after using Sonos, the technology still blows us away. The Sonos PLAY:3 is a wireless all-in-one music system that lets you jump right into the Sonos experience. If you have an iOS or Android device, you can download the Sonos remote control app, and you can also control the system with a computer using the Sonos Desktop Controller. Here are some other Sonos products that go nicely with the Sonos PLAY:3, which itself you can get for $299 from Sonos, or order from Amazon and get a free Sonos Bridge included with purchase!
You can use a pair of Play:3 or Play:5 units to create wide stereo sound as well!
The peeps over at Sonos seem to have learned from their way and, rather than being late to the party, this time it's released the new Sonos 3.8 software ahead of time to ensure compatibility with OS X Mountain Lion. Android 4.0 also gets official support with this update, as does the upcoming Sonos Sub, the new wireless subwoofer add-on that the company will be releasing in June. You can grab the updated software for iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, Mac, and PC, and the software will then update all your Sonos hardware, ensuring everything is ready for the future.
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We've been big fans of Sonos here at Gear Live for years. The wireless sound system is a pleasure to use and makes multi-room music a snap to set up. Today the company is introducing a new addition to its product line--the Sonos Sub.
The Sub aims to provide a simple (but expensive) way to add deep bass to your Sonos Play:3 and Play:5 units. You simple plug it into the wall and use the Sonos app on your smartphone, tablet, or computer to add it so your setup.
[Editor's Note: Andru Edwards of Gear Live and the Ask Andru column joined us on this week's GeekWire radio show and podcast to share his top picks for technology gifts this holiday season. Here's a rundown of his choices, just in time your last-minute shopping.]
Kindle Fire: Amazon's $199 tablet is often compared to the iPad, but in many ways it's more appropriate to compare it to the iPod touch, based on the price and feature set. If you want a cheap tablet that can ship to you by Christmas, the Kindle Fire is it. There are some bugs. In terms of responsiveness and the accuracy of its touch interface, the Kindle Fire doesn't always live up to Apple iOS devices, but for $199 you're not going to find anything else that has this feature set, and many of the bugs will be fixed by software updates.
Crayola ColorStudio HD: This $29.99 accessory is a digital marker for the iPad, turning the Apple tablet into a virtual coloring book when used in conjunction with a companion app, with music and animations. With the digital marker, kids can do more with the iPad than just play games. They can be color, they can make their own coloring book pages. Input styles include crayons, markers and paint. Features include Facebook sharing and printing through Apple AirPrint.
Sonos, makers of the Play:3 and high-end ZonePlayer wireless multi-room music systems, has announced an update to its system software that adds more wireless music streaming options, and lets users control their Sonos systems with their Android tablets.
The most notable feature of the 3.6 software update makes the Sonos Controller app available to Kindle Fire and Android Honeycomb tablets users, letting them use their tablets as remote controls for their Sonos products. The company released the app for Android phones in February, and the Sonos Controller is also available for iOS devices.
The Android tablet app, which can be downloaded for free from the Android Market or the Amazon Appstore, is scaled to take advantage of tablets' extra screen space. It includes enhancements like on-device music library and zone management, alarms that let you fall asleep or wake to your favorite tunes, and Twitter integration, so you can tweet what you're listening to on Sonos from your tablet.
As evidenced by the fact that we saw holiday decorations up at a major retailer the other day, it seems that It's that time of year again where we dig deep and give you our daily recommendations on what you should get your loved ones in our 2011 Holiday Gift Guide. This year, we're kicking it off with the Sonos PLAY:5. If you're unfamiliar with Sonos, it's basically the best way to get music from just about any location (your computer, your iPhone, the web, the cloud, etc.) to play in any room in your house. It's super intuitive, and even years after using Sonos, the technology still blows us away. The Sonos PLAY:5 is a wireless all-in-one music system that lets you jump right into the Sonos experience. If you have an iOS or Android device, you can download the Sonos remote control app, and you can also control the system with a computer using the Sonos Desktop Controller. Here are some other Sonos products that go nicely with the Sonos PLAY:5, which itself you can get for $399 from Sonos:
Oh, and if free shipping is something you appreciate, just enter the code FREESHIPSONOS during checkout!
In this episode we open up the Sonos PLAY:3, the latest wireless Hi-Fi speaker system from Sonos. The PLAY:3 is the smallest wireless speaker system that Sonos offers, allowing you to plug it in and set it up just about anywhere, but still getting big sound. You can pair two of them together for a wide stereo sound stage, and you can also turn it vertical and it will automatically go into mono sound mode. We open up the PLAY:3 and show you how it looks - be on the lookout for our PLAY:3 review over on Bleeding Edge TV!
You can get the Sonos PLAY:3 now for $299.
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If you don't know, we're huge fans of Sonos here at Gear Live. There's nothing else like it if you're a music lover for managing and listening to just about anything you can think of, in any room of your home, wirelessly. Today, Sonos is introducing a new product aimed at lowering the cost of entry into Sonos ownership with the PLAY:3. The PLAY:3 is a small, Hi-Fi streaming unit that sports three integrated speakers (a tweeter and two mid-range) and three digital amps, offering big sound. There's no subwoofer (save that for the PLAY:5, formerly known as the Sonos S5) on board, but the PLAY:3 does rock a passive bass "radiator" to make up for it, and we hear it works well. You can pick up the PLAY:3 for $299 from Sonos directly, or in stores. If you're new to Sonos, you'll also need to pick up a $49 Bridge to create the Sonos wireless network in your home. Once you have that, you can then just add more Sonos zones to any room in your home, and they'll automatically pick up the network and start working. It's good times.
We expect to get a test unit of the PLAY:3 in tomorrow, and we will start testing and let you know our thoughts.
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We know a lot of you were expecting OS X Lion tomorrow, and while we aren't saying it's o ut of the question, we do know one long-awaited product that'll definitely be launching tomorrow, and that's Spotify. It took them a hell of a long time to get everything signed, sealed, and ready to deliver, but the Spotify folks are ready to roll:
We were really adamant about bringing the service to the US, which means a really great, free experience. We wanted to be really careful about the way we did this, and the rights holders felt the same way. It took some time, but we're absolutely thrilled that all four major labels and a ton of indies are behind us, and we'll be bringing that Spotify experience to the US tomorrow.
The free service will be invite-only at first, so you'll wanna head over to the signup page now to get your email address in the hat. From there, there will also be two paid tiers--a $4.99 per month service that does away with the ads, and a $9.99 per month service that allows you to use Spotify on a mobile device like the iPhone or an Android smartphone, with the ability to cache tracks for offline access. The European version of Spotify boasts 15 million tracks, but there's no word as of yet on how many tracks they'll be launching with in the US. We'll know tomorrow!
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Sonos' stable of wireless music offerings allow listeners to have a stereo system that encompasses every room in their home, and to control the whole system simply and wirelessly. Sonos makes a hardware remote control for the system and apps for iOS devices, and today the company announced that Sonos owners can now also use their Android devices to control their music.
The Sonos Controller for Android is a free app that can access and play all the music available through the Sonos universe, which includes everything from computer-based media libraries to services like Spotify, Rhapsody, Rdio, Pandora, and Napster.