More trouble than it’s with so far

  • 5 October 2017
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Alexa update has made my sonos worse

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17 replies

Userlevel 2
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Why's that? :?
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First of all, finding instructions on setup was like a scavenger hunt.

I got it working to find Spotify is not yet integrated, with no estimated timeline provided for it.

I had to rename my sonos devices because they had room names like my echo dots, which made the integration work (with pandora)

My line in integration from echo dot to sonos is hosed. The old settings for this have changed, the delay is back, no clear instructions on this. And the volume is going up and down on it seemingly at random.

And then this morning, the line in from Alexa turned on and started playing through the sonos at 6:20 am. The only alarm we had set for 6:20 was an alexa alarm in a different room, that played a selected sound.

I wish I could undo this whole update and go back to the previous sonos app version.
Userlevel 7
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Let's just roll that grenade into the room without any justification :8 This is a major update, there will be teething issues but the best way to resolve these as a community is to give a bit more information rather than a petulant moan!
Userlevel 2
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Let's just roll that grenade into the room without any justification :8 This is a major update, there will be teething issues but the best way to resolve these as a community is to give a bit more information rather than a petulant moan!
Indeed, it is a beta and these things should be raised so they can be worked on.
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Let's just roll that grenade into the room without any justification :8 This is a major update, there will be teething issues but the best way to resolve these as a community is to give a bit more information rather than a petulant moan! did I not provide detailed information? I have run software engineering and product management for the last 20 years, I understand about betas and rollouts. This was extremely underwhelming from a customer perspective, and yes, I’m complaining, this is not freeware. And yes, I provided detailed information on my experience.
Userlevel 2
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Let's just roll that grenade into the room without any justification :8 This is a major update, there will be teething issues but the best way to resolve these as a community is to give a bit more information rather than a petulant moan! did I not provide detailed information? I have run software engineering and product management for the last 20 years, I understand about betas and rollouts. This was extremely underwhelming from a customer perspective, and yes, I’m complaining, this is not freeware. And yes, I provided detailed information on my experience.

Not in your first post :8
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Not in your first post you didn't.

True. The mobile web page only had a place for “brief description” so that’s what I entered ; no text area for a larger post, which is why I added a comment immediately. But yes, I see why you didn’t see the detailed info.
First of all, finding instructions on setup was like a scavenger hunt.


In the Announcements section at the very top of the page, highlighted as a sticky:

https://en.community.sonos.com/announcements-228985/alexa-now-playing-on-sonos-6791301

A thread introducing the new functionality, with a video and links on how to setup and operate. Hardly a scavenger hunt.


I got it working to find Spotify is not yet integrated, with no estimated timeline provided for it.


Fair enough, but they do say it is coming soon. Plus, did you know you can initiate a queue from the Sonos/Spotify app and then control pause/play/skip/volume/etc. functions via voice control?


I had to rename my sonos devices because they had room names like my echo dots, which made the integration work (with pandora)


Seems common sense to me. Both are speakers. If you had two voice operated cars, would you expect "Alexa, start the car" to know which you are talking about, or should you name one "Mercedes" and the other "Porsche"?


My line in integration from echo dot to sonos is hosed. The old settings for this have changed, the delay is back, no clear instructions on this. And the volume is going up and down on it seemingly at random.


I would think Sonos expected the line-in to be redundant at this time. YMMV.


And then this morning, the line in from Alexa turned on and started playing through the sonos at 6:20 am. The only alarm we had set for 6:20 was an alexa alarm in a different room, that played a selected sound.

I wish I could undo this whole update and go back to the previous sonos app version.


Disable the Sonos skill in Alexa and you will be rid of most of your tribulations. Sorry it didn't work out for you, but I dare say your expectations were high for an initial beta release.
Let's just roll that grenade into the room without any justification :8 This is a major update, there will be teething issues but the best way to resolve these as a community is to give a bit more information rather than a petulant moan!

Get used to the petulant moans. Some have been gearing up for this onslaught since Aug. 2016. This is their time to let loose, no matter what the release consists of. To paraphrase Alfred Pennyworth - "Some posters just want to watch the world burn . . ."
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I think "more trouble than it's worth so far" was a super-fair assessment, not a moan. I prepared detailed info of my experience. I said I wish I could rollback to the previous version. I didn't say Sonos sucks. I was letting the forum and the company know my experience and opinion of the recent updates. Is that not what the forum is for? I think you're being a little oversensitive, and I'm not sure why. Not sure they need you defending them when people report their experiences.
Userlevel 5
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[quote=jgatie] Sorry it didn't work out for you, but I dare say your expectations were high for an initial beta release.

This has been in development and private beta for quite a long time.

Labelling the general release 'beta' is a cynical way of not having to say that it isn't ready, but releasing it anyway because they have some new hardware to sell.
Userlevel 7
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Any 'negative' comment is sure to be pounced on by certain users on this forum ... welcome to the club!

Check out https://en.community.sonos.com/amazon-alexa-and-sonos-229102/how-to-disable-the-alexa-feature-6791488
for more examples.
The app update is buggy. I try to change rooms or groups and it goes back to the room it was set to. I set up Alexa and the skills. I followed the video. I ask Alexa to play a song in the bedroom and it comes out in the living room. Speakers named as such. Then o kept trying to change to room in the app and no luck. It seems the app conflicts with Alexa somehow. So I added every room. Shit down the app. It seemed to work once. Then it wouldn’t play. It said it was playing in the bedroom but no sound. I tried to ask Alexa to play something else she says it’s already in use by another device. I went through the names and setup in Alexa 3 times finally got it to play so I ask Alexa to play a song on the bedroom and all of a sudden I have a different song playing on each speaker as my wife comes in and says what are you doing ? So I shut it all down and just used the app to control. So it needs works. I don’t know why it’s having trouble choosing what to play on which speaker. I then added a group in setup. “All rooms “. That didn’t work at all. Hopefully the bugs will be fixed. I was excited for the new feature.
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I agree, more trouble than its worth so far. So excited to get mine today, unlike usual sonos fast & easy install, had to update, and update, and reset my password, and download alexa, and update. Had to search for directions and they were hard to find, and incomplete.

After 90 minutes instead of the usual 3 min setup, its working. But grouping is extremely sketchy. Almost impossible to group by voice. Say "alexa, play the Cars on livingroom and get it playing on bathroom instead. Volume control when alexa enabled speaker part of group only controls the alexa speaker, not the group.

I hope things get better or I fear this will be the death of Sonos and I will have 3k of worthless speakers if the company goes under.

Kinda sad to see what was a fabulous product become bloated, what used to take one touch on the phone now takes 3 and is quite un-intuituve. KISS - Keep It Simple Sonos, that was your strong suit and the latest update feels more like Itunes than the previously elegant Sonos interface
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I've been playing with 3 voice controlled audio systems. Echo/Alexa, Google Home/Chromecast Audios, and now Alexa/Sonos. Let me just say that voice control is cool, but can be extremely problematic. I was listening to a home automation podcast early this year, and the host and guest were joking about Star Trek and voice control given today's reality. They were talking about how a crew member would walk into a room and say "Lights on" and there would be perfect illumination. The joke was the show never showed the hours of setup the crew member must have had to go through. "Lights on." "No, not those lights." "No, brighter." "Aaah, way to bright!" They also joked about how on Star Trek, if the computer didn't immediately respond to voice command, it was a moment of great dramatic tension - something was seriously wrong. Whereas today, that's pretty much expected. The number of times my wife and I have tried to get Alexa to turn our lights and she ignores us is comical. Or she says "OK" and nothing happens.

Grouping is probably the most difficult issue. I've had an Echo and then shortly after release, and Echo Dot for some time now. When multiroom audio was added, I played around with that. The grouping is primitive to say the least. It works well, such as it is, but since speakers can only belong to one group, it's limiting. Granted, I only have two Echo devices, so for those it's not an issue, but if you wanted to have even something as simple as an "upstairs", "downstairs", and "whole house" (upstairs + downstairs) group, you can't. But given the really simple grouping, it does seem to work reliably.

The Google Home/Chromecast Audio ecosystem is different in that you can define numerous groups. The problem for voice control is that it becomes difficult to even remember the names of the groups if you have many Chromecast Audios/Homes and numerous combinations. I've sometimes had to pull the Google Home app up to see what I've named groups which defeats the benefit of voice control. (As an aside, I've also run into the issue with coincident names on both Google Home and Alexa/Sonos where both have at least part of the name the same: e.g. "Kitchen Home" and "Kitchen", and boy the "amusement" that can arise from that....)

So issues of voice control for conflicting (at least partially) names, and especially grouping isn't a surprise to me. The former is just something that has to be worked through by adjusting names, and for now, Sonos still has the grouping going through the app. One thing they might be able to add easily is an "everywhere" group, since that's long (always?) been a toggle in their grouping UI. Personally, I think I'd like to see them add something like an "add/remove" command. Like "Alexa, play on " "Add " "Add " "remove "
Userlevel 4
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Gosh, the more posts I read about Sonos and Alexa problems, the more I want to just NOT pick up my pair of ONEs sitting at Best Buy, tomorrow! I already know that I'm not gonna get these things set up in less than 3 minutes like every OTHER Sonos speaker, but that's the price that early adopters have to pay, I'm afraid. 😞