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The Boston Globe

Business

Innovation Economy

It’s clear music players will never be same

Depending on what year you began buying ­music, you may have amassed a rack of CDs, a teetering stack of cassettes, or a shelf of vinyl. It was usually kept close to the stereo, a cabinet full of expensive equipment with two tall speakers standing sentry.

Anyone coming of age in the current century, of course, knows music mostly as digital files, stashed on a smartphone or iPod or distant server. And that is forcing makers of audio equipment like Bose Corp. and Sonos Inc., both with substantial Massachusetts operations, to tune in to changing consumer behaviors more closely than ever before.

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