I'm admittedly not sure if I'd call it an investment so much as blind loyalty, but per my request I received two Pioneer A1 speakers for Christmas. I had been debating — for weeks — whether I wanted to invest in building out an Airplay or Sonos system. I'm not sure if any of you have encountered this same dilemma, but my decision to go with Airplay more or less boiled down to these factors: - I'd consider myself an Apple-faithful. Probably to a fault. So, I'm big into native Apple integration whenever possible, and Airplay offers me that. Especially as someone who uses commercial-free iTunes Radio instead of Spotify and Pandora, and as such is an iTunes Match and iTunes desktop user. Not to mention, Sonos would have meant yet another place to manage/access my music, when I prefer to have everything stemming from one centralized place. - The cost of building a Sonos system is at least twice the cost of building an Airplay one if you use Pioneer's A1, A3, & A4 lineup. Compare Sonos' Play:1 at $200, to Pioneer's A1 at $100. Or the Play:5 at $400 to the A4 at $200. And I hate when folks cite Sonos' Airplay support via Airport Express, as if it wouldn't cost an additional $100 per speaker. Not to mention the clutter of extra cables lying around. - Despite what it looks like on the surface, Airplay is actually rather flexible in comparison to Sonos. Sonos is for music and music only. And that’s great if that’s all you desire; then it’s undoubtedly the superior option. But Airplay provides me with the flexibility to stream anything to a speaker. Whether that be music, a TED Talk, a podcast, a TV show or movie, etc. The fact that Airplay is leveraged by so many app developers, and isn't exclusive to any one app, is a big plus for me. And despite what people say about Airplay being locked to a singular iDevice, it's free from those restrictions if you stream from a computer running iTunes. I tend to do that to mimic Sonos' coveted multi-room audio experience, controlling things using the Remote app on my iPhone/iPad. All that said, I won't pretend it's been unicorns and rainbows thus far. I started encountering some of the problems I read about, as well as some new ones. Airplay is admittedly a bit unreliable. The audio does occasionally pop in and out, which is especially prevalent when I use a video app and stream the audio to a speaker. More often then not, it eventually decouples itself and stops streaming the audio altogether. And in my experience, I've had the speakers not only disconnect from iTunes (desktop), but go so far as to entirely disconnect from the wireless network. Although it isn't ideal, the audio popping out every once in a while is an annoyance, but it doesn't kill me. It's the video/audio and the disappearance from iTunes and/or the wireless network that drives me mad. From what I've gathered, however, Airplay is subject to your network's bandwidth. So, in theory, a router with big throughput (i.e. AirPort Extreme) should be able to handle it better. But that may be wishful thinking. In a sense, on top of all the above reasons, I suppose I did choose Airplay as an investment. An investment in the idea that Apple will improve its features and reliability over time. Is that foolishly optimistic thinking of me? I’m starting to think it might be since they don’t make the supporting hardware (outside of Apple TV). What do you think about Airplay’s future? And have you ever been faced with this decision?