Sonos has long been renowned for developing a premium set of noise-canceling headphones to join the company’s ecosystem of multi-room speakers and audio products. A new design patent archive at the German Patent and Trademark Office seems to provide a glimpse of a wider, more refined product than what we saw from the US Patent and Trademark Office in September. These latest archives were registered in December and published at the end of January.
One notable difference is that the Sonos word mark is visible on this design; it was not present in the previous archive. (That said, it’s in broken lines, which does not count too much in a design patent and means that placement can change.) Another evolution is that the rods that come out of the headband now go straight down into the ear cups; there are no extra parts wrapped around the back of each ear cup that we saw before. Again, these are broken lines, but the solid lines also show a development from the design we saw before. There are obvious adaptations to the outer ear cup shape.
Little is known about the Sonos headphones beyond the fact that they are expected to cost the same as high-end competitors from Sony and Bose. It is believed that one of the main features will be a seamless transfer of music from the headphones to the Sonos sound system (and vice versa). But Sonos will probably need to deliver more than just that to lead customers from market leaders and newer players like the Apple AirPods Max.
An adapter for earphones is also part of the latest Sonos archives at the German Patent and Trademark Office. It is not uncommon for expensive headphones to offer replaceable ear pads, so this may be what this is for. A USB-C port, various buttons and a 3.5 millimeter cable entry are also shown in the headphone drawings.
Sonos CEO Patrick Spence confirmed during the company’s earnings call last week that the next Sonos product will be announced in March. The device may end up being a smaller portable speaker that complements the great Sonos Move. But during the conversation, Spence also confirmed that Sonos continues to aim to release “at least” two new products each year. The headphones may be the second new offer for 2021 – provided they do not come as a surprise next month.