Sonos confirms Apple Music spatial audio support – and not just for its Era 300

Sonos confirms Apple Music spatial audio support – and not just for its Era 300
(Image credit: Sonos)

When Sonos announced its Era 300 earlier this week, it made a big deal about the wireless speaker supporting Dolby Atmos-powered spatial audio from Amazon Music. But it could not concretely say anything about support for spatial audio via Apple Music other than that it would come soon. Well, Sonos has now confirmed that it is indeed coming on 28th March (the day the Eras go on sale) – and not just for the Era 300 but also its Arc and Beam (Gen 2) soundbars too.

It is a welcome albeit perhaps not surprising confirmation, considering that, like the Era 300, the two Sonos soundbars also have the Dolby Atmos props to deliver Apple's spatial audio music. The Arc has upward-facing drivers (as well as front- and side-firing drivers) to convincingly deliver the height channels of an Atmos (or 'spatial audio') track, while the more affordable second-gen Beam has forward-facing drivers that are able to give the impression of height courtesy of some clever processing. The Era 300, meanwhile, takes on a more wireless speaker-like "cinched hourglass" form factor with an Arc-like driver spread of upwards, sides and fronts.

On 28th March, these three Sonos devices will be the first products outside of Apple's ecosystem to support spatial audio tracks on Apple Music, with the Era 300 seemingly a direct rival to the spatial-advocating HomePod 2. It's a comparison we cannot wait to try.

Unfortunately for Tidal Hi-Fi Plus subscribers wishing to take advantage of their access to Dolby Atmos music on the service's catalogue, Sonos has not announced spatial audio support for Tidal. Yet, anyway.


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Becky Roberts

Becky is the managing editor of What Hi-Fi? and, since her recent move to Melbourne, also the editor of Australian Hi-Fi magazine. During her 10 years in the hi-fi industry, she has been fortunate enough to travel the world to report on the biggest and most exciting brands in hi-fi and consumer tech (and has had the jetlag and hangovers to remember them by). In her spare time, Becky can often be found running, watching Liverpool FC and horror movies, and hunting for gluten-free cake.