Gadgets for humans

Sonos abandons ‘Recycle Mode’ on old speakers after much backlash

Sonos Move (1 of 7)

Back in October, Sonos introduced a new ‘trade up‘ program that offers existing Sonos users a 30 percent discount to buy a new speaker if they recycle an eligible older model.

Problem was, qualifying for the program required users to put their old devices in a new ‘Recycle Mode’ which would permanently prevent the devices from working.

This did not go over well. While it seemed like a fairly innocuous move at first glance, it meant that users were limited in how they could dispose of the device. Sonos has now decided to do away with the controversial program, according to The Verge, allowing users to get rid of the speakers however they see fit.

The models eligible for the trade-up program are Sonos devices that will soon stop receiving updates due to aging hardware, but that doesn’t mean they stop working. Previously, Sonos recommended you take your old speakers to a certified e-waste recycling center. That’s fine, but what if you just want to give the speaker to someone else? Surely that’s a more eco-friendly option than just getting rid of a perfectly functioning speaker.

Devon Wilson, an employee at an e-waste recycler, brought this issue to light in a viral tweet in December. In one example, someone brought in five perfectly functional Sonos Play:5 models that could have simply been sold or given to someone else.

This is process is no more. Instead, Sonos will simply tell you to factory reset the devices. It appears you can do whatever you want with the old speakers and you will still be able to get the 30 percent deal.

It’s the wiser, more eco-friendly move. For more on which devices are supported in the trade-up program, check out Sonos‘ page here.

Did you know we have a newsletter all about consumer tech? It’s called Plugged In – and you can subscribe to it right here.

Published March 6, 2020 — 01:02 UTC

on The Verge