A few days ago, The edge reported a strange outage that caused Sonos to send customers more items than they ordered – and charge extra on top of that. While most customers received anywhere from two to six additional speakers, we were recently approached by a customer who had a much more extreme experience.
In a nutshell, this all came to the fore after two users got in touch The edge about this issue earlier this week and pointed us to a Reddit thread of users who had the same (or similar) experiences ordering one or two speakers and received several in return. In an email sent to customers (which you can read in full in our previous report linked above), Sonos attributed the issue to a system update that caused “some orders to be processed multiple times” and customers too were charged a lot.
But after purchasing a Sonos turntable set, Arc soundbar, Arc wall mount, single speaker and Roam speaker, a customer (who asked to remain anonymous) received a deluge of shipments that turned his apartment into a small Sonos warehouse. . Sonos gave him six of each item, resulting in about 30 different shipments appearing in his apartment building and for about $15,000 worth of products.
Like the other customers affected by the apparent outage, he’s also being charged for those extra items, and has been told he won’t see a full refund until he returns everything. The customer said he originally used a discount code to purchase the products, so he also gets a discounted price, but that still adds up to over $6,000 in additional costs.
Sonos has promised to refund customers affected by these issues within 10 days. In an email to The edgeSonos spokesperson Madeline Krebs confirmed, “refunds will be processed and will be issued independently of product returns.” As we mentioned earlier, they may not have much of a choice in this matter — language on the FTC website indicates that federal law protects customers from having to pay for products that appear even if they haven’t ordered them.
Sonos has told users it will provide free return labels and let users schedule a pick-up using the carrier. But the customer we spoke to said that Sonos initially wanted him to print the prepaid labels and then transport the truckload of unordered items to a local UPS store (to which the company later backed out after refusing). After Sonos sent a UPS courier to his apartment building yesterday, the UPS employee, not realizing that the customer needed to pick up 30 packages, took just one box, and then left.
In addition to his wallet, the client tells us that this whole ordeal is also hurting his relationship with his property managers. The customer has received so many boxes that he can no longer fit them in his apartment, so he has started leaving the supplies in the lobby of his apartment building. “She [the property managers] are patient, but are not happy with the boxes in the lobby,” the customer said.
Thankfully the deliveries have stopped, but he still has dozens of boxes with nowhere to go. When he tried to contact Sonos customer service, he told us he’s “passed out daily to new reps” who promise to get a call or update that never comes.
Sonos hasn’t offered him anything for the inconvenience of converting his apartment into a Sonos storage unit, other than the “courtesy” of free shipping labels used to fix the problem that caused it in the first place.
Sonos declined to comment further.
Update June 15, 8:52 PM ET: Added Sonos statement that customer refunds are issued independently of item returns.