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Microphone sensitivity for the “Alexa” wake word is low



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That's because you ARE a beta tester! It's right there in the Sonos skill agreement.
This is very aggravating. The whole point of buying Sonos One is for the voice controls, but that is the part that is failing expectations the most.
Some good deals to be had at Best Buy right now on open box Ones. The local store had several, very likely returns due to impatient purchasers unwilling to wait while this (very real) issue is fixed. Or customers who thought they were getting a Bluetooth speaker, lol.
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I've decided to return my four ONEs for a refund while I can. I suppose they'll let me buy them again later if they figure out how to have a workable voice control feature. So I'll be trading great sound with poor voice recognition, for some new Echo devices with good voice recognition and passable sound (but at a much lower price). First world problem, solved for now.
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Sonos version 8.2.3 is now available for the Sonos One (other Sonos devices will stay on 8.2.2). This update improves Alexa responsiveness for Sonos One users in US, UK, Germany, and Austria.

You should find that Alexa is getting better at listening, with a decrease in the times Alexa speaks up when not called. Alexa on Sonos One is now more likely to carry out your desired action when requested; especially when it’s noisy, when the speaker is further away, or when speaking quietly.

Update within your Sonos app by going to More > Settings > Online Updates.

We’re continuing to work with Amazon and the Alexa team to improve Sonos One voice control. You can expect to see more developments as we go. Let us know what you think of the changes. We’d love to hear from you.
Cool! Does appear to work better now... Don't have to shout, even when music is playing, to get Alexa's attention. Will see if it self-triggers when playing NPR over the next few days. Fingers crossed.
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The change really is quite significant. RonOnThePond might want to give this update a go before packing up those units for a return.
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Brilliant 8.2.3 seems to be so much better Alexa hears me now even in a whisper. Great job guys just as it should be. I'll have to check for false triggers, the odd one is acceptable so long as its not triggering every couple of hours I'll be happy. Thanks and Happy Christmas to all at Sonos
8.2.3 thanks Ryan, what a difference, Alexa can hear me without shouting and from the other side of the room! Now works as expected.
Have listened to newscasts for a couple hours now with zero false triggers. Able to interrupt at any time without having to yell. It’s now working exactly as it should have from the get go. Did Amazon finally share their keyword tuning? Whatever changed, it’s very welcome!

Now, let’s get those skills like Radio Paradise working, and the One will be complete!
What Radio Paradise like skill is missing? It plays fine on my Dot wired to a Connect Amp even just now.
What Radio Paradise like skill is missing? It plays fine on my Dot wired to a Connect Amp even just now.

It works via TuneIn, but there’s a RP Alexa skill, which can be set to stream FLAC, which doesn’t work at all on the One. Won’t do FLAC on the Dot, but will on original Echo.

“Alexa, open Radio Paradise”
Welcome to Radio Paradise! Then silence, on the One.
Faith in Sonos is restored! I still think there's room for improvement (and it's still early days) but this update improves things massively for me.
I also updated to the latest software and am experiencing much better Alexa response. It is significantly better than before. I’m now able to remove the Dot I was using.

Faith in Sonos is restored! I still think there's room for improvement (and it's still early days) but this update improves things massively for me.
Ok so bought the Sonos One to replace our Echo Gen 2, we used alexa on it for about half a day and reverted back to Echo device. I’ve installed the update tonight but it’s too late to test, will enable Alexa on the one again tomorrow and report back.
Now that Alexa works so well on the One, I grabbed another one, open box at Best Buy for $165. Perfect condition, probably returned by someone frustrated with the (vanquished) Alexa issue. Score! Now have a stereo pair of Ones in the dining/kitchen area. Sound fantastic together, highly doubt that the upcoming $350 Apple widget will compare, especially in stereo imaging.
The Apple unit won't do as well as a 1/One pair. The physics/brain response of/to separated speakers for the stereo imaging illusion is not easily defeated.

What will be interesting to see is how two Apple boxes in one room sound together; Apple claims that each responds to the presence of the other and shapes its sound for overall better performance of the two together without saying that they stereo pair. Time will tell how that compares to a Sonos pair, though at the USD 700 price for the Apple pair, only the 5 pair will be more expensive.
Ok so bought the Sonos One to replace our Echo Gen 2, we used alexa on it for about half a day and reverted back to Echo device. I’ve installed the update tonight but it’s too late to test, will enable Alexa on the one again tomorrow and report back.

I can confirm I have spent the day with this and its improved that much that I have set the echo gen two keyboard to Echo is I can use it for drop-in and I am using the Sonos as he main "Alexa" now. Nice one Sonos.
Bought the one for Christmas and it is still having the same problems with slow response when it does hear me, which is far less that the dot and echo I already have.
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Anyone else noticing that the sensitivity while audio is playing seems to have deteriorated since the big update? Sensitivity in a quiet room is still great, but the last few days I’m noticing that I’m back to shouting if anything is playing.
Yes, the sensitivity while audio is playing is poor. I have Dot 40 feet away from Sonos One and I can be standing 3 feet from the Sonos One and the Dot that is 40 feet away will respond to me. My Sonos One is in the kitchen and I like to use it as a timer. However, I find that I have to get right next to it in order for it to hear me and not the Dot from the other room.
Yes, something has changed. Not to the better. I now have to shout at Alexa when music is playing. Ive first noticed this a couple of days ago.
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100% something has changed. After the update was very good, now have to shout again. Not good!
I noticed the sensitivity getting worse in the last few days and was able to fix it by turning the mic off and on again on the device. Worked for both of my Ones.
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Thanks for the reports guys, we'd love to look into this further. I've checked in and there shouldn't have been any changes recently. The team will be looking into this just in case something changed.

Can you please check something for us? Next time this happens, where you have to yell, can you go to https://alexa.amazon.com/spa/index.html and select the card for that command? Then, press on the play icon next to "Alexa heard:..." and it'll replay what the microphone heard.

Is the replay covered up by a lot of music?

I noticed the sensitivity getting worse in the last few days and was able to fix it by turning the mic off and on again on the device. Worked for both of my Ones.
This would be a good test as well.