HomePod vs Sonos One - must spend 330K frequent flyer points connected to airline likely to go bust

I have 330,000-odd frequent flyer points in Virgin Australia, and IMO, they’re likely to go bust due to COVID-19.

Putting aside the probability of this occurring, I want to spend these frequent flyer points on tech goodies. Even though that’s almost always a poor way to spend frequent flyer points (0.5c/pt vs 2c/pt for flights on average), it’s better than nothing if the company falls into liquidation.

How would you spend 330K points?

  1. 3x HomePods (100k points each)
  2. 5x Sonos One (60k points each)
  3. 1x Apple Watch Series 5 (250k points) + 1x Sonos One

For me, I’m leaning towards the HomePods, because I’d like to have a nice speaker set-up to use for listening to podcasts, and I’d prefer to deal with Apple than Sonos for after-purchase care. I have an Apple Watch Series 3 humming along nicely, and while the always-on display of the Series 5 is compelling, I don’t feel the need to upgrade yet.

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Homepods in my opinion. I have multiple sonos in my home. The homepods sound better plus I prefer siri. I’ve never used a sons one but I have the sonos move and the homepod still sounds better in my opinion. 1 stereo pair homepods living room. 1 homepod bedroom. living room playbar and 2 play 3’s with sonos sub. kitchen play 1, dining room play 3, office sonos move, bedroom playbar with 2 play 1’s for surrond sound

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I’m waiting until fall for the next Apple Watch, hoping that the battery depletion issue many people have noted with always-on will have been addressed. (Also sleep-tracking code has been found in watchOS [which might or might not be restricted to new models], and Ming-Chi Kuo has predicted faster performance, better water resistance, and a new chipset that will presumably offer improved Wi-Fi and/or cellular connectivity.)

The speaker choices are both good products. I’ve got two HomePods and really like them, and use them a lot. Best sound I’ve ever heard from a speaker in its size/class and and the mics are incredibly sensitive so it’s easy for me to set timers in the kitchen by talking to the HomePod in the living room.

All the “frequent flyer” type programs I belong to - the best answer is always gift cards, or even virtual gift cards. in your example 0.5c/pt for goods vs 2c/pt for flights on average - given that example I’d expect 1c/pt for gift cards. I would double check that.

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Homepods, they sound great. I don’t like the Sonos app. Frequently have to help clients who lost libraries etc.

I agree. I have a Sonos Beam and two Sonos One and I’ve done demos and the Move sounds “exactly” like a One.

I’m still going to add an Apple HomePod this year because I use HomeKit enough and I’m an Apple Music subscriber. So my home will basically be a Sonos/HomePod affair.

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You mentioned your current watch, but what’s your current speaker setup?

Unless we have major manufacturing delays, I bet there will be a new watch in 5-6 months.

Homepods … or as someone else pointed out, gift cards if such exist.

I actually got more Sonos speakers recently even after having a HomePod. I’d rather go in on a system like that for now. Way better multi-room support. I’m not sure where Apple is headed with HomePod but I don’t have high hopes.

This is a terrible waste of miles and Virgin Australia will not go out of business. Book a holiday etc, and if you truly think they will go out of business (they won’t), book the trip on a partner of their that you think will survive.

For perspective, I manage to get a $5,000 business class ticket for every 60,000 miles I accumulate, so to give up 300,000+ miles for a few HomePods (total value of around $400-600) seems like a really low return for your miles.

A pair of HomePods sounds amazing. I also have the Series 3 watch and it’s humming along fine. I’m waiting to see what the next one is. Sonos has good products but they don’t integrate as well into the Apple environment (not that Siri isn’t without its own foibles).

So if those are the options you’re thinking about I’d go with the HomePods. Add my vote to that column.

One of my clients has a house full of Sonos, mostly amplifiers and speakers build into the ceiling. I frequently have to fix lost libraries and they complain things not working right (I did not recommend or install this system…) Now they are dealing with this:

I’ve had more issues lately than usual with my speakers disappearing after Sonos updates. That being said things became more clear when Sonos announced the June arrival of their new S2 Platform. I suspect a lot of their engineering efforts when to getting it ready and thus the Q&A testing of the soon to be legacy platform (now dubbed S1) probably took a hit.

I’m still bullish on the HomePod. Once I have my Apple Watch I really won’t be relying upon smart speakers in the home in fact i’ll likely disable the microphone on most of them.

Smart speakers aren’t the future …Dick Tracy didn’t speak into plugged in speakers he spoke to a smart watch. The only reason why the industry keeps flogging smart speakers is because Google ran their Android watch initiative in the ground and Amazon, after their phone flopped, knew better than to even try.

I only need HomePods for “other” people in my home that don’t have Apple Watches. Realize it’s my scenario and others… YMMV.

I think it is completely smart to assume that ANY airline could/will go Bankrupt this year, so spending your points ASAP is wise.

If you travel a great deal points can be valuable for seat upgrades and related niceties; I know a comedian who is in the top ‘club’ at Delta and uses her miles for all sorts of flying, sky lounge and hotel perks.

But I’ve always been leery of points and have always chosen cash-back. (Also, I don’t ravel much.) Several years ago a relative got a message from her favorite airline that her non-expiring points were suddenly being turned into expiring ones, and she had to rush to cash them in for items she didn’t really need.

I travel roughly 300 days per year and have a number of point accumulation methods in practice. I accumulate several million miles per year and use them regularity to have longhaul international business travel tickets (which on a value per mile basis) is the best return for your points. While (it is of course possible that any business can go bankrupt, some are likely and some are not. Using 300,000+ points for a $600 return on investment cannot seriously be considered a good idea. For example, if I go onto united.com right now and try to book myself a longhaul business class saver award to x place, most of the time it is around 60,000 points if you chose your timing correctly. To purchase the same ticket for cash is (again dependent on when you buy it) multiple thousands of dollars. One can buy 5-6 of these tickets for the miles they are quoting as having.

I’m in the same boat. I was already heavily invested in sonos prior to the homepod. The surround sound system they have is what i initially got into sonos for. We added a sonos move for when we have friends or family over so we can have music inside the house the same as we have playing on our patio.

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2 HomePods and 2 SONOS Ones…

Best of both worlds but I have to agree that the HomePods sound better overall.

This is old FUD now.

Sonos screwed up the comms and PR, but ending support for 10 year old products is much better track record than even Apple. No matter how much we may wish, tech cannot be upgraded and software updated for ever.

TL;DR - You can get a trade-in/upgrade credit for any old gear and Sonos changed policy so the old gear keep working, you aren’t forced to recycle it and Sonos doesn’t brick it.

I traded in an old Connect device and got 30% discount - on anything they make no matter the price. Sonos bricked it (the original snafu), so after contacting them they gave me an additional $220 credit.

On the more interesting question of Sonos vs. HomePod - really two very different ecosystems and the choice can be complex if you aren’t simply all into Apple blindly.

I tend to see HomeKit/Siri fans choose HomeKit, while price conscious and multi-eco-system familys are usually “all in” on Amazon Alexa so Sonos is preferred.

In the short term, the lack of a HomePod Junior makes it very expensive if you want voice automation in multiple rooms. Just can’t beat all the Amazon Alexa form factor options for $30 to $100. Alexa (either standalone or built into Sonos) makes a great music solution. Nobody serious about music listens to Alexa alone.

On sound quality, many of the people who say HomePod is better haven’t compared two Sonos speakers in true stereo mode. For close to the price of a single HomePod, true stereo music simply doesn’t compare and buying two HomePods for stereo and then doing that in multiple rooms is very expensive and not practical for most of us.

If you don’t need voice control, Costco has been selling a pair of the Sonos 1 (the older model) for under $200 and that is quite a bargain. Add a $30 Amazon dot and you’ve got full voice control.

Since Sonos supports Apple music, Amazon Music, Spotify, and tons of other music services, it has much broader appeal when one-size-fits-all Apple Music is not king of the household.

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So two Sonos > one HomePod. Quelle surprise. :sunglasses: