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Sonos 3.6 update pulls Windows Media DRM, boosts Spotify

updated 01:55 pm EST, Thu December 22, 2011

Sonos update stops Zune, Microsoft devices

Sonos has quietly put out an update for its Play and Bridge devices last week that unusually strips out features. The 3.6 update pulls support for copy-protected Windows Media files, leaving Zune Pass users and those still tied to mostly inactive PlaysForSure DRM stores without a way to stream their music to Sonos boxes. The company hasn't given an explanation for the switch but has been asked for a comment.

The step isn't likely to affect most listeners, but it follows a history of the copy protection Microsoft once assumed would be ubiquitous ultimately hurting users. As it closed MSN Music in favor of the Zune Marketplace, Microsoft nearly locked users out of their own music with plans to take down the servers authorizing music. MSN, Walmart, Yahoo, and others ended up closing shop while Apple's iTunes survived and was one of the more vocal advocates of going DRM-free.

Outside of the copy protection issue, Sonos' update also gives Android tablet users a more optimized interface. Spotify use has been improved, and bugs in audio for both the Play:5 (formerly ZonePlayer S5) and Connect:Amp have been fixed.

Version 3.6 needs both a firmware update to the audio system itself as well as a software update for the Mac, Windows PCs, iOS, and Android to reflect the changes.

By Electronista Staff


  1. facebook_John

    Via Facebook

    Joined: Dec 2011


    Should have bought your music at iTunes Store

    Should have bought your music at an iTunes store. Zune is so dead and useless.

  1. Flying Meat

    Dedicated MacNNer

    Joined: Jan 2007


    "He's dead, Jim."

    We told 'em not to wear the red shirts. ;)

  1. hayesk

    Professional Poster

    Joined: Sep 1999


    Simple explanation

    Sonos had to pay to license the DRM. They no longer have enough customers who need the DRM format to justify paying the licensing fees.

  1. testudo

    Forum Regular

    Joined: Aug 2001


    Re: Should have

    Should have bought your music at an iTunes store. Zune is so dead and useless.

    Problem with that, of course, is no one can license the Fairplay DRM and so you can't stream any of that old iTMS content you have littering your hard drive.

    Oh, but why let little things like that s**** up an argument.

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