Sonos and Bose are two of the biggest names in the business when it comes to smart speakers and home audio, both offering a range of top quality speakers. In this article, we’ll put two of their biggest sellers head-to-head - the Bose SoundTouch 10, and the Sonos One.
Both of these speakers offer something different. Sonos have opted for an exclusively ‘smart’ setup, with the only way to connect to your speaker being via Wi-Fi or ethernet, and controlling it with your smartphone, tablet, or computer. The Bose speaker, on the other hand, gives you a few more options - you can connect via Bluetooth, plug a player directly into it using the AUX-In port, or connect it to your Wi-Fi network and use your phone or tablet like the Sonos.
The Bose speaker also features six programmable buttons on the top, that can be set up using the Bose SoundTouch app - you can add your favourite Deezer or Spotify playlists, or stations from one of the thousands of internet radio services on offer. This means you don’t need to use your phone to turn it on, just press one of the six presets on the top of the speaker.
Bose also give you a handy remote control - you don’t need to use it, but it saves having to get your phone out if you just want to skip a song or turn the volume down.
So when it comes to options, Bose definitely has the edge over the Sonos One.
Smart speakers don’t just play the music that’s stored or streamed through your smartphone or tablet, they actually come with services that can be added to your account.
When we’re looking at pure numbers, Sonos wins hands down. They include around 50 different streaming services like Deezer, Apple Music and Spotify, with internet radio services on top, making it extremely unlikely that you won’t be able to find your favourite. Take a look at the full list of services available on Sonos here.
With the Bose SoundTouch speaker you get far fewer music services, they offer 8 in total, but this depends on where you are in the world - for example, users in the US will get Pandora, but here in the UK, that’s not included.
You do get the added option of being able to use the Bluetooth, or AUX-In functions on your Bose speaker so you can still play whatever you want, but this lack of services might put some people off.
Take a look at all the services on offer with Bose here.
It’s worth noting that free streaming services like Spotify Free, or Deezer Free, don’t work on either platform, but this can be bypassed on the Bose speaker by simply connecting via Bluetooth.
Considering their compact size, both of these speakers sound great, but there is a difference between the two.
The Bose speaker can certainly pump out a bit more volume than the Sonos, but you do get a little more clarity with the Sonos. The Sonos is an inch deeper than the Bose too, and this seems to be reflected in the audio quality, making the bass that little bit deeper, with slightly richer tones than the Bose.
The difference is subtle and you’d only really notice it if you were comparing them side by side but the Sonos does score slightly higher than the Bose when it comes to sound quality - that said, the Sonos is a bit more expensive.
This is another area where Sonos is slightly ahead of Bose, the Sonos One comes with Alexa built in so you can issue commands or ask questions like “Alexa, who sings this song?”, or “Alexa, turn up the heating” - find out more about Alexa on Sonos here.
Alexa is currently only available for Bose speakers if your Amazon account is registered in the US, but they do have plans to issue a software update to add Alexa skills to UK accounts - so watch this space.
The Bose SoundTouch 10 comes in at £159.95, while you’ll need to fork out £199 for the Sonos One.
So , to sum up, if you’re looking for something versatile, that gives you loads of options for connecting your kit, the Bose SoundTouch 10 is great value for money - and those presets are really handy too.
On the other hand, if you’re looking for the best possible sound quality you can get for less than £200, and you don’t really care about Bluetooth, or plugging things in - go for the Sonos.
The Bose sounds great, but the Sonos sounds better.
If you were struggling to make a decision, we hope this helped you make up your mind. If you’d like help with anything else, you can contact one of our Team Knowhow experts here.