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Sonos Roam portable speaker just leaked — here's what you need to know

Sonos Roam leak
(Image credit: The Verge)

The Sonos Roam, Sonos’ rumored new wireless speaker, appears to have leaked. The Verge shared multiple images and specs, seemingly confirming previous whispers that the new speaker would be smaller and cheaper than the Sonos Move smart speaker.

According to the Verge, the Sonos Roam will measure 6.5 x 2.5 x 2.5 inches and weigh “about a pound.” That's about one-sixth as heavy as the technically portable but relatively chunky Move. Judging from both these specs and the leaked product images, you can instead expect something more akin to the UE Megaboom 3, one of the best Bluetooth speakers around.

Sonos is planning a product reveal on March 9; recently discovered patent filings suggested this could either be a new wireless speaker or a pair of Sonos headphones. With this new, remarkably detailed leak, it looks like it could be the Sonos Roam that’s officially launching next week. Here’s what we know so far, based on both this new report and that Sonos speaker patent filing.

Sonos Roam price and release date

The Verge’s leak states that the Sonos Roam will cost $169. Sonos hasn't confirmed anything yet, but a lower price than the Sonos Move is exactly what we wanted from the company’s next speaker. At $399, the Move is much pricier than its wireless contemporaries, and $169 would bring the Roam much closer in line with the Megaboom 3¸ LG XBoom Go PL7 and other sub-$200 Bluetooth speakers.

The same report also gives the release date as April 20, following the likely official reveal on March 9.

Sonos Roam design

Sonos Roam leak: Sonos Roam design

(Image credit: The Verge)

We knew from the original patent filing that the next Sonos wireless speaker would adopt a smaller, lighter, more portable design than the bulky Move. These new leaked images definitely back that up, showing a much more handheld-sized design for the Sonos Roam. In fact, if the size specs are accurate, it’s even smaller than the Megaboom 3, which measures 8.9 x 3.4 x 3.4 inches and weighs 2 pounds.

The patent filing also hinted at a cylindrical design; the Verge’s images show a slightly more triangular shape, albeit still one that can both stand upright or on its side. That would make the Roam more flexible than the Move, which is only designed to stand upright.

It looks like the Roam will also charge over USB-C, or with a separate charging base that the report says will cost $49. The base wasn’t detailed much in the patent filing, but was visible in an included diagram.

The Verge also said the Roam will be “fully waterproof.” We’d normally consider that to mean it reaches an IPX7 rating, which denotes protection against full submersion in fresh water. The Move is rated IP56, which is enough to protect against heavy showers but not a dunk in the bath or pool.

From the leaked images we can also see a set of volume controls and a play/pause button on the Roam’s left edge. These controls match the general design of those on the Sonos Move.

Sonos Roam features

The Roam will apparently support wireless connectivity over Bluetooth and Wi-Fi. Integration with Sonos’ multi-room system is a common thread among all the company’s speakers, including the Move, so it wouldn’t be surprising if this was confirmed at the event on March 9.

Wi-Fi integration will also allow for Alexa, Google Assistant and AirPlay 2 support, according to the Verge. Just like the best smart speakers you should be able to give voice commands to control playback or have your choice of voice assistant respond to queries for you.

This latest leak doesn’t confirm what exact versions of Bluetooth and Wi-Fi the Sonos Roam will use, though the patent filing listed 802.11ac Wi-Fi — this would be a direct upgrade to the Sonos Move’s 802.11n standard.

Sonos Roam battery life

Sonos Move leak: battery life

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

The Roam’s battery life is “expected to be around 10 hours” per charge, according to the Verge. If accurate this could be one area where the Roam disappoints: the Sonos Move could also manage 10 hours of playback, but compared to the MegaBoom 3 or XBoom Go PL7 that’s pretty short. The patent filing hinted at lower overall power usage than the Move, so it’s possible the Roam could simply have a smaller battery as well.

Sonos Roam: Outlook

Other than the potential lack of battery life improvement, this latest big leak is a mixture of both the expected and the encouraging. As much as we like the Sonos Move, a wireless speaker like the Sonos Roam — or at least what the Roam appears to be — fixes several issues with it, most notably the large size and heavy weight.

We’re eager to see what Sonos announces on March 9, and to hear what its next speaker sounds like with our own ears.