***Moved from New Product Announcement Post***
I have to be honest, I am shocked these new products are not integrated into the SoundTouch line and are not compatible and I honestly beleive this will work out quite badly for Bose unless they find a way to integrate the two, before it;s too late.
1) Customers are easily going to get confused between the options of Smart Home line and SoundTouch line, not everyone is going to want to do the research. It's going to result in some customers buying say a SoundTouch 10 and then a Soundbar 500 say, and finding quickly they don't work together - unlke an older Sonos Play:1 and Sonos Beam that ARE compatible. Honestly, why should customers want or need to compare two product lines from the same company? It is just not good business sense at all. Sonos is a low friction purchase, as was Bose until this new product line came along.
2) Sonos has supported backward compatability with older products for many, many years. I still have the very first Sonos connect's that work pefectly with all the newer Sonos products. This results in a the customer feeling like they had made a good investment. As an owner of SoundTouch products, several 10's and 20's the new line-up and 'new' app worry me that they will be sidelined and the new Smart Home products will be the future focus. The two should be integrated for sure, and both lines can then continue on as one integrated system. Sure, it's good to introduce new hardware but making it a whole new product line is a bad idea in my opinion.
Here is the thing. I actually really like the SoundTouch 10 and 20 and I was looking to expand with more SoundTouch devices around the home (I am hoping Apple Music and AirPlay eventually come). I'm not terribly interested in Alexa control and I'm not hugely keen on the new Home Speaker 500 design. I also expanded my Sonos connects with a pair of Sonos Ones for one of the rooms. This is where it hurts - I feel now that Bose has sidelined the SoundTouch in favour of a product I'm not really keen on, only suits a certain customer and isn't in any way integrated into the existing SoundTouch platform. If, just if, I had have gone all-out on Sonos then I wouldn't be feeling this frustation. I currently have 4 SoundTouch 10's and 2 ST20s but I am honestly concerned what the future holds for these products.
While I sppreciate Bose has come out and said it's SoundTouch line will continue to receive some updates to the app, I just think the whole thing is rather confustion both from a business decision and customer standpoint. Why build two apps? Why complicate your product line-up? It doesn't make sense.
This whole critisim, which I honestly think will be seconded by many custoimers, can be solved in one simple decision - integrate the two lines before it's too late. If you think that technical challanges prevent this from happening, then you need to hire software engineers that can make it work.
Sorry to be a little underhwlmed on this occasion. I hope that this prompts some further discussion within Bose about this decision, so it can be mitigated and ensure all 'new' and existing custoemrs are satisfied.