KimF
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Jun 24, 2018

Soundtouch... What now?

Dear Bose, and its community. 

The following can be considered as an open letter, suggestions or whatever the reader may prefer. 

 

In 2018 my choice of a solid multiroom system, including a soundbar and subwoofer, was bose soundtouch. The sound, design and a well-established brand, three very appealing reasons to choose the soundtouch serie (and a dedicated salesman who promised a future-proof "investment").


Within a year or two I am planning to move from an apartment to a house. Therefore, I have started to look for products to expand my current multiroom setup. I have been very satisfied with my soundtouch products, except the 3 months "play all" app blunder. It is a natural choice to expand with new soundtouch products, or products where I can integrate my soundtouch products. 

I visited my local sound store where I bought my existing soundtouch speakers. Surprisingly they informed me the soundtouch series were discontinued. They presented me to the smart serie, but they couldn't play with my soundtouch products. I was amazed (negatively). All this leads to the following questions/suggestions.

 

  1. To my knowledge all other well-known multiroom brands, provides full integrability with former product lines. Bose, are you planning to do the same between soundtouch and smart speakers? (Or maybe introduce a new product lines which makes this possible) 
  2. To my knowledge all other well-known multiroom brands, provides full use of google home, alexa, airplay 2 etc. Bose only provides support to alexa. Are you planning to provide the same choice of smart solutions to the soundtouch series?
  3. I would like to use my soundtouch products for many years to come. However, I would like to expand with new speakers within a year or two. Today I have 2 soundtouch 10 speakers, 1 soundbar 300 and the acoustimass 300. Dear Bose, dear Community. What do you suggest? Be patient and await software solutions, new products or something similar which makes it possible to expand a great multiroom system? or simply keep the soundbar and subwoofer and change brand? 

    At the end of the day, I really like the high-quality products of Bose, but a frustration keeps building up, which I also sense in the community. I think we need somebody who tells us, if you understand this frustrating and start to involve the hard tried soundtouch owners in the future development plan. 

    I apologize if this sound like unfair criticism, but I hope you can pick out the suggestions for future features and I would like to emphasize I am very satisfied with sound etc. but worried about the future as soundtouch owner. 

    Sincerely 
    Kim
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rickatk
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Nov 12, 2015

Re: Soundtouch... What now?

Author Accepted Answer selected by KimF

@KimF wrote:

Dear Bose, and its community. 

The following can be considered as an open letter, suggestions or whatever the reader may prefer. 

 

In 2018 my choice of a solid multiroom system, including a soundbar and subwoofer, was bose soundtouch. The sound, design and a well-established brand, three very appealing reasons to choose the soundtouch serie (and a dedicated salesman who promised a future-proof "investment").


Within a year or two I am planning to move from an apartment to a house. Therefore, I have started to look for products to expand my current multiroom setup. I have been very satisfied with my soundtouch products, except the 3 months "play all" app blunder. It is a natural choice to expand with new soundtouch products, or products where I can integrate my soundtouch products. 

I visited my local sound store where I bought my existing soundtouch speakers. Surprisingly they informed me the soundtouch series were discontinued. They presented me to the smart serie, but they couldn't play with my soundtouch products. I was amazed (negatively). All this leads to the following questions/suggestions.

 

  1. To my knowledge all other well-known multiroom brands, provides full integrability with former product lines. Bose, are you planning to do the same between soundtouch and smart speakers? (Or maybe introduce a new product lines which makes this possible) 
  2. To my knowledge all other well-known multiroom brands, provides full use of google home, alexa, airplay 2 etc. Bose only provides support to alexa. Are you planning to provide the same choice of smart solutions to the soundtouch series?
  3. I would like to use my soundtouch products for many years to come. However, I would like to expand with new speakers within a year or two. Today I have 2 soundtouch 10 speakers, 1 soundbar 300 and the acoustimass 300. Dear Bose, dear Community. What do you suggest? Be patient and await software solutions, new products or something similar which makes it possible to expand a great multiroom system? or simply keep the soundbar and subwoofer and change brand? 

    At the end of the day, I really like the high-quality products of Bose, but a frustration keeps building up, which I also sense in the community. I think we need somebody who tells us, if you understand this frustrating and start to involve the hard tried soundtouch owners in the future development plan. 

    I apologize if this sound like unfair criticism, but I hope you can pick out the suggestions for future features and I would like to emphasize I am very satisfied with sound etc. but worried about the future as soundtouch owner. 

    Sincerely 
    Kim

 

@KimF 


I found your post to be very balanced and reasonable. Your experience is not unusual, product lines change all the time. The SoundTouch line was launched in late 2014. The line promised a series of speakers that could be connected for a multiroom experience. The SoundTouch functionality was added to the existing soundbars such as the Cinemate 130 becoming SoundTouch 130 by simply adding an adaptor and new packaging. As time went on the SoundTouch speakers were updated (v3) and the SoundTouch 300 speaker bar and sub was introduced. Alexa was added along the way. 

 

In 2018 the new Smart Home line was introduced, 5 years after the original launch of SoundTouch. For reasons unknown, the new line of network speakers didn’t offer backwards compatibility. Bose was insistent however that the SoundTouch line would not be abandoned and continued to roll out updates and a couple features. Airplay is still promised. 

SoundTouch is a mature stable platform with very good speakers. I for one remain happy with my speakers. I certainly wouldn’t hesitate buying more SoundTouch speakers and as of late this summer I picked up a ST 10. Granted SoundTouch is aging there is still some life left in the line. Unless you are looking for the absolute latest and greatest like Siri, Google or other voice assistants or e-arc for Atmos then SoundTouch is for you.

 

In the electronics world future proofing anything is anyone’s bet. However I have been using SoundTouch products for over five years and remain happy with the products. Take some comfort in the fact that you have very good speakers that will give you years of service.  Also I expect you will be able to buy SoundTouch speakers for some time to come, if not at your local audio store, directly from Bose. Product longevity, in my experience, is a cornerstone of Bose philosophy.

I just installed all new wireless cable streamers - the latest thing. In the process I am tearing down my old Apple TV network. I don’t really need them anymore. My new TV has Airplay, Apple TV app and a whole bunch of other streaming apps built in. My cable provider has a slew of apps too, plus cloud PVR. My point is I would have never predicted any of these things last year.

 

I evaluate my products on how well they have performed retrospectively and I can say my Bose gear and SoundTouch has performed very well. I hope my comments give you a little comfort that your gear is still very good - enjoy it! 

 

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Keith_L
Community Manager

Re: Soundtouch... What now?

Hello KimF,

 

Thank you for posting and for your interest in the future of the SoundTouch speakers.

 

I can confirm for you that we are not discontinuing the SoundTouch series of speakers and are continuing to support them. We are still releasing updates to add new features and functionality to the speakers and have no plans to stop doing so any time soon.

 

Our latest update for the speakers came out a few weeks ago.

 

As for what these future updates will hold, we don't have any more information to share at this time, but we will continue to update and improve the SoundTouch speakers alongside the Smart Home range.

 

I do apologize for any frustration caused if it feels like we haven't been as open as we could have been, but we do appreciate the feedback and the suggestions you have provided. When we have more information to share on the future plans for SoundTouch we will be sure to let the community know.

 

Kind regards,

 

Keith L - Community Support

 

 

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rickatk
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Nov 12, 2015

Re: Soundtouch... What now?

Author Accepted Answer selected by KimF

@KimF wrote:

Dear Bose, and its community. 

The following can be considered as an open letter, suggestions or whatever the reader may prefer. 

 

In 2018 my choice of a solid multiroom system, including a soundbar and subwoofer, was bose soundtouch. The sound, design and a well-established brand, three very appealing reasons to choose the soundtouch serie (and a dedicated salesman who promised a future-proof "investment").


Within a year or two I am planning to move from an apartment to a house. Therefore, I have started to look for products to expand my current multiroom setup. I have been very satisfied with my soundtouch products, except the 3 months "play all" app blunder. It is a natural choice to expand with new soundtouch products, or products where I can integrate my soundtouch products. 

I visited my local sound store where I bought my existing soundtouch speakers. Surprisingly they informed me the soundtouch series were discontinued. They presented me to the smart serie, but they couldn't play with my soundtouch products. I was amazed (negatively). All this leads to the following questions/suggestions.

 

  1. To my knowledge all other well-known multiroom brands, provides full integrability with former product lines. Bose, are you planning to do the same between soundtouch and smart speakers? (Or maybe introduce a new product lines which makes this possible) 
  2. To my knowledge all other well-known multiroom brands, provides full use of google home, alexa, airplay 2 etc. Bose only provides support to alexa. Are you planning to provide the same choice of smart solutions to the soundtouch series?
  3. I would like to use my soundtouch products for many years to come. However, I would like to expand with new speakers within a year or two. Today I have 2 soundtouch 10 speakers, 1 soundbar 300 and the acoustimass 300. Dear Bose, dear Community. What do you suggest? Be patient and await software solutions, new products or something similar which makes it possible to expand a great multiroom system? or simply keep the soundbar and subwoofer and change brand? 

    At the end of the day, I really like the high-quality products of Bose, but a frustration keeps building up, which I also sense in the community. I think we need somebody who tells us, if you understand this frustrating and start to involve the hard tried soundtouch owners in the future development plan. 

    I apologize if this sound like unfair criticism, but I hope you can pick out the suggestions for future features and I would like to emphasize I am very satisfied with sound etc. but worried about the future as soundtouch owner. 

    Sincerely 
    Kim

 

@KimF 


I found your post to be very balanced and reasonable. Your experience is not unusual, product lines change all the time. The SoundTouch line was launched in late 2014. The line promised a series of speakers that could be connected for a multiroom experience. The SoundTouch functionality was added to the existing soundbars such as the Cinemate 130 becoming SoundTouch 130 by simply adding an adaptor and new packaging. As time went on the SoundTouch speakers were updated (v3) and the SoundTouch 300 speaker bar and sub was introduced. Alexa was added along the way. 

 

In 2018 the new Smart Home line was introduced, 5 years after the original launch of SoundTouch. For reasons unknown, the new line of network speakers didn’t offer backwards compatibility. Bose was insistent however that the SoundTouch line would not be abandoned and continued to roll out updates and a couple features. Airplay is still promised. 

SoundTouch is a mature stable platform with very good speakers. I for one remain happy with my speakers. I certainly wouldn’t hesitate buying more SoundTouch speakers and as of late this summer I picked up a ST 10. Granted SoundTouch is aging there is still some life left in the line. Unless you are looking for the absolute latest and greatest like Siri, Google or other voice assistants or e-arc for Atmos then SoundTouch is for you.

 

In the electronics world future proofing anything is anyone’s bet. However I have been using SoundTouch products for over five years and remain happy with the products. Take some comfort in the fact that you have very good speakers that will give you years of service.  Also I expect you will be able to buy SoundTouch speakers for some time to come, if not at your local audio store, directly from Bose. Product longevity, in my experience, is a cornerstone of Bose philosophy.

I just installed all new wireless cable streamers - the latest thing. In the process I am tearing down my old Apple TV network. I don’t really need them anymore. My new TV has Airplay, Apple TV app and a whole bunch of other streaming apps built in. My cable provider has a slew of apps too, plus cloud PVR. My point is I would have never predicted any of these things last year.

 

I evaluate my products on how well they have performed retrospectively and I can say my Bose gear and SoundTouch has performed very well. I hope my comments give you a little comfort that your gear is still very good - enjoy it! 

 

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KimF
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Jun 24, 2018

Re: Soundtouch... What now?

Thank you for your quick replies, Keith and rickatk. 

You convinced me the SoundTouch products do continue the way I thought when I first brought them. As Bose state on their website: " Start with one and add more over time for music throughout your home". Now my fingers are crossed, I'll be able to add more within a year or two.

 

I fully understand technology is developing over time, and new features are implemented. My main concern was the integrability over time, which I didn't fell was addressed by Bose compared to other companies, however this concern is now proved wrong. Thank you!

ranec106
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Nov 5, 2018

Re: Soundtouch... What now?

I also have the same doubts. I need to buy another speaker, for now I have the Soundtouch 300 with the wireless speakers. I also own a soundlink mini II. I want to buy another speaker that connects to the network but if I buy a soundtouch I run out of Google Assitance, Siri, etc. If I buy the smart home series, these will not be integrated with the soundotouch. So for now I will not buy any Bose. I do not understand how they have launched two lines of very similar but incompatible domestic speakers. I think it is advisable to wait until it is clear where Bose wants to go or look for brands like Sonos, Denon ...

KimF
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Re: Soundtouch... What now?

I can't agree more to this dilemma Ranec106. Luckily I don't need any new speakers before a year and two. For now I'll await and see which new features Bose will add. 

rickatk
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Nov 12, 2015

Re: Soundtouch... What now?


@KimF wrote:

Thank you for your quick replies, Keith and rickatk. 

You convinced me the SoundTouch products do continue the way I thought when I first brought them. As Bose state on their website: " Start with one and add more over time for music throughout your home". Now my fingers are crossed, I'll be able to add more within a year or two.

 

I fully understand technology is developing over time, and new features are implemented. My main concern was the integrability over time, which I didn't fell was addressed by Bose compared to other companies, however this concern is now proved wrong. Thank you!


I think particularly frustrating for you(would be for me) ...you purchased your SoundTouch speakers so close to the launch of the newer smart home speakers. It’s anyone’s guess how long the SoundTouch line will stay on the shelves. I have my eye on the ST300 and dual subs. 

One thing I have read but haven’t confirmed, SoundTouch speakers and Bose Home speakers can be joined through the play all feature.

rickatk
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Re: Soundtouch... What now?


@ranec106 wrote:

I also have the same doubts. I need to buy another speaker, for now I have the Soundtouch 300 with the wireless speakers. I also own a soundlink mini II. I want to buy another speaker that connects to the network but if I buy a soundtouch I run out of Google Assitance, Siri, etc. If I buy the smart home series, these will not be integrated with the soundotouch. So for now I will not buy any Bose. I do not understand how they have launched two lines of very similar but incompatible domestic speakers. I think it is advisable to wait until it is clear where Bose wants to go or look for brands like Sonos, Denon ...


I think it is pretty clear...the future is the home speaker series. But that shouldn’t stop you from buying more SoundTouch gear now unless you really require the voice assistants.

 

One thing I have read but haven’t confirmed, SoundTouch speakers and Bose Home speakers can be joined through the play all feature.

KimF
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Jun 24, 2018

Re: Soundtouch... What now?

Hahah, luckily(or not) I first realized how close it was a month ago. I didn't know the smart home speakers were released already in 2018. If I had known, I had returned everything in the summer of 2018 when the app failed in "play all" function.

I think you are right, but I'll wait and see when considering the first comments. 

If you can use the play all function between smart and soundtouch, they are integrable, which Bose clearly stated wasn't the case. So I don't believe it should be possible. 


Plasmanut
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Re: Soundtouch... What now?

Kim F,

 

I will provide a dissenting point of view in this thread to serve as a word of caution. 

 

I purchased 7 SoundTouch 10 speakers a year ago under the promise that AirPlay2 functionality would be released. For me, this was critical, especially because Bose has refused to include Apple Music Support as a service within the SoundTouch app and because I play my music exclusively from mobile devices (iPhones and iPads). 

 

This never materialized, despite announcements released by Bosed on their official Twitter account more than 18 months ago. 

 

If you spend enough time on this board, you will find dozens upon dozens of repetitive, canned responses from Bose moderators constantly reiterating the promise of new features. 

 

My observation over the last year can be summed up this way: Bose is merely doing “patch work” with releases, and despite that, is actually falling further behind with each passing release of operating systems, non-Bose hardware and connecting technologies. Look up the Mac OS Catalina threads for an example of lost functionality. 

 

Other than Spotify Free being added last month, which was definitely less-than-stellar, my speakers are not doing a single thing new or better since I purchased them in late 2018. Meanwhile, I keep living on a prayer, checking this forum every day in hopes that AirPlay 2 will finally happen. 

 

I chose Bose sound because it sounds great to my ear. I own other Bose products such as a couple of pairs of headphones, including the QC35, which I am very satisfied with. 

 

However, it is abundantly clear to me that Bose is WAY behind the competition when it comes to anything software-related. This is a huge disappointment for me and it will definitely inform my next purchases. I have convinced many friends to stay away from Bose until they gat their act together. Personally, I am certainly not spending another dime on anything with the name Bose on it. 

 

I know some members of this forum will disagree with me and have surrendered to the limitations of the platform, but there are many that will likely agree with my sentiment.