Sonos' AirPods Max-rivalling headphones delayed, but at least they'll be cheaper

Sonos' headphones hit a software snag

Apple AirPods Pro Max
(Image credit: Semeon Hrozian / Unsplash)

Sonos has been rumoured to release its own premium headphones for quite some time, with speculation intensifying at the end of last year after alleged schematics were leaked.

However, as the months tick by we've not heard anything official on the potential rival headset to Apple's AirPods Max.

That might be for good reason, as Bloomberg journalist and Apple expert Mark Gurman claims that Sonos has hit a snag in its over-ears plans. Software issues have delayed production, he writes.

"People with knowledge of the matter" told him that there has been a problem with the Wi-Fi connectivity technology inside the Sonos headphones. It should have been sorted by now, but means that we won't see their release until June at the earliest.

Better news is that, once the premium cans arrive they will reportedly cost $449 (£359 at today's exchange rate). AirPods Max are $100 more expensive, while Sony's amazing WH-1000XM5 'phones have a retail price that's only a touch lower, at $399.

That should make the long-awaited Sonos pair highly competitive in the premium space, and contenders among the best wireless headphones.

According to Gurman and Bloomberg, the Sonos headphones are expected to be available in black and white colour options, and work with existing Sonos speakers. That means they should be able to be synched with music or TV playback in other rooms.

That's likely why the Wi-Fi bug has been so troubling – most wireless ANC headphones work solely using Bluetooth so don't need to connect to a home network. Sonos products, on the other hand, include their own wireless ecosystem too for multiroom support.

Other new products the company is said to be working on for this year include a large "party" speaker, new soundbars (possible new Sonos Arc), and an upgraded portable speaker. But, a previously-rumoured TV set-top-box to rival the likes of Amazon and Roku has also hit some issues, it is said.

Rik Henderson
News Editor

Rik is T3’s news editor, which means he looks after the news team and the up-to-the-minute coverage of all the hottest gadgets and products you’ll definitely want to read about. And, with more than 35 years of experience in tech and entertainment journalism, including editing and writing for numerous websites, magazines, and newspapers, he’s always got an eye on the next big thing.

Rik also has extensive knowledge of AV, TV streaming and smart home kit, plus just about everything to do with games since the late 80s. Prior to T3, he spent 13 years at Pocket-lint heading up its news team, and was a TV producer and presenter on such shows as Channel 4's GamesMaster, plus Sky's Games World, Game Over, and Virtual World of Sport.