Late in 2017, connected audio titans Sonos teamed up with Swedish furniture staple Ikea, and two years later the pair released a line of Symfonisk speakers that doubled as household items.
So far, this range has included the bookshelf speaker and the lamp speaker, but according to an Instagram Stories tease, an FCC filing and inside knowledge from The Verge, there’s more on the way shortly.
Going off the FCC filing specifically, it looks like the Symfonisk lamp speaker will be getting a refresh, with the newer model costing around the same price ($179/£150/AU$269).
More interestingly, the other item that Sonos and Ikea plan to bring to the Symfonisk line will take the form of “a piece of wall art with an integrated speaker”, if The Verge’s sources prove accurate.
As there hasn’t been an official announcement yet, details on both products are light on the ground at the moment (outside of knowing that a cable will need to run up to the wall art), so we’ll have to wait for the companies to unveil the products to learn more.
My art or yours?
The success or failure of the wall art speaker will likely hinge on whether or not the product offers a set range of images, or if it allows customers to mount or frame their own pictures.
Currently, Ikea does offer a range of prints to furnish the home, so it’s certainly possible that the new Symfonisk will follow this model, but we hope it also offers the option of a ‘blank canvas’.
While a number of tech products offer a choice of colors to add a touch of personalization and flair, these items typically have more of a focus on practical applications than wall art does, and their aesthetic value is a bonus.
Arguably, the purpose of wall art is purely aesthetic, and so this speaker will need to cater to these needs in a much more versatile way than the other Symfonisk products. After all, it doesn’t offer the same utility as the lamp or bookshelf speakers (which, as you may have guessed, double as bookshelves or lamps respectively).
The wall art speaker is already a rather niche product, so restricting its market further by avoiding customizability could limit its success.