Sonos and Alexa Integration - more commands!


Hi,

Great to finally get Alexa integration, but so far all the commands it supports seem to be rather clunky, and occasionally don't work. I have realised since having it the only command I really want is "Alexa Transfer to Sonos everywhere". This would enable me to take the thing that is playing locally and push it to every one of the rooms in my house. Naming rooms is fine when you are looking at them, but is it "Basement", "Office" or "downstairs"?

Added bonus would be to name groups of speakers. Actually the core app could do with this. Otherwise, just need to get the reliability up in the hand over.

The functions should also accept what is playing on my phone's music collection. So "Alexa, play on " should allow you to hear what you have selected on the phone's collection. Not sure if a phone's music collection can be queried in reverse, but it would be nice.

Otherwise keep up the good work! Perhaps you can come up with a command I never knew I needed ;-)!

Best,

Alex

12 replies

I've figured out that in the menu there is an option called "Smart Home", in there is a sub option called groups. I have managed to group my speakers by rooms. So living room and conservatory is now called downstairs, bedroom 1 and bedroom 2 is now upstairs and I've made a group called everywhere containing all the speakers. It seems to work. The only problem is when trying to give alexa a command like "alexa play spotify playlist throwback Thursday on everywhere" it tried to either cut me off too early before I finish the line or it tried to find a list called "throwback Thursday on everywhere". If I try "alexa play Gem FM in conservatory" I get "the jam", "no Jam FM", "playing jazz fm"....etc
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KarlScally wrote:

I've figured out that in the menu there is an option called "Smart Home", in there is a sub option called groups. I have managed to group my speakers by rooms. So living room and conservatory is now called downstairs, bedroom 1 and bedroom 2 is now upstairs and I've made a group called everywhere containing all the speakers. It seems to work.



Interesting, i'm not sure if that is supported by Sonos. I would think only grouping in the Sonos app would work correctly, then you just need to say 'Play [something] in [one of the grouped players]' and it will play on all grouped players.
I've been playing with it this morning and it's not entirely successful, it seems to recognise the groups but if the speakers are grouped in the sonos app it seems overrides the amazon app. So, if I try to play "downstairs" and the Sonos app has all grouped it plays in all, I'm still playing but I don't quite think it's there.
After a lot of playing I've come to the conclusion groups is not working. It seems to partly work and partly use the Sonos groups. I did think it was working at one stage, I can say "play music downstairs" but it then plays the last music used on Sonos so if you are playing separate music in the living room and kitchen it plays different music. You can say "play radio 1 on downstairs" but it then ignores "downstairs" and plays the music through the dot. If I group "living room" and "kitchen" in Sonos and then say "play radio 1 in kitchen" it plays in both living room and kitchen. I have tried and tried loads of other combinations and it doesn't work consistently or logically........ahhhhh. Not great. Hoping they start to sort this out soon.
That's because grouping of rooms in the Alexa app is not fully supported yet. If you do attempt to use it, results are clunky and unpredictable, as you have seen. Amazon has announced a Multi-Room Speaker SDK is coming early next year, but we do not know to what extent Sonos speakers can or will utilize this SDK.
I have set up the Groups in the Smart Home section of the app and Alexa simply doesn’t recognize them. Very frustrating. Plus asking it to change volume only works sometimes. I have Sonos throughout my home and I thought Alexa might be more convenient than opening the app to control things but this is so frustrating it’s really not worth it. If I had one speaker it would be ok, but the inability to move music from one to many speakers is a huge linitation.
Again, there is no support for 3rd party speakers in Alexa groups yet. There is supposed to be a new Alexa Voice Service (AVS) Multi-Room Music SDK from Amazon that will address this next year. Whether Sonos can utilize this new SDK remains to be seen.

For now, you can group via the Sonos app, then tell Alexa to play to any room in the group and the entire group will play.
Ok so I have 6 Sonos speakers, and I just got a echo dot. I want to play music "everywhere" (meaning I want the same music to play on all my Sonos speakers - and it just doesn't seem to work. I even went into the alexa app, created a group (selected the dot, and the 6 Sonos speakers) but when I say "Alexa play Johnny Cash "everywhere'" - she says "I didn't find any device called 'everywhere' that can play music"

Im going nuts trying to figure this out... Am I nuts or it doesn't work? She can play individual Sonos speakers but not all of them together??? Please help.
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ARZA wrote:


Im going nuts trying to figure this out... Am I nuts or it doesn't work? She can play individual Sonos speakers but not all of them together??? Please help.



Group them in the Sonos app
dave77 wrote:

ARZA wrote:


Im going nuts trying to figure this out... Am I nuts or it doesn't work? She can play individual Sonos speakers but not all of them together??? Please help.



Group them in the Sonos app



you mean group them in the Sonos app- after Alexa starts playing one of them? There is no way to create custom (saved) groups in Sonos. I see you can group speakers adhoc, but still no way to get Alexa to play all the Sonos speakers at once.
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ARZA wrote:

dave77 wrote:

ARZA wrote:


Im going nuts trying to figure this out... Am I nuts or it doesn't work? She can play individual Sonos speakers but not all of them together??? Please help.



Group them in the Sonos app



you mean group them in the Sonos app- after Alexa starts playing one of them? There is no way to create custom (saved) groups in Sonos. I see you can group speakers adhoc, but still no way to get Alexa to play all the Sonos speakers at once.



If you group the speakers in the Sonos app, you can then ask Alexa to play to any speaker in that group and the music will be sent to all speakers within that group. e.g. Create a group Kitchen Sonos, Lounge Sonos and Bed Room Sonos. Then ask 'Alexa, Play soft jazz on Kitchen Sonos' and audio will be output to all three.
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ARZA wrote:

dave77 wrote:

ARZA wrote:


Im going nuts trying to figure this out... Am I nuts or it doesn't work? She can play individual Sonos speakers but not all of them together??? Please help.



Group them in the Sonos app



you mean group them in the Sonos app- after Alexa starts playing one of them? There is no way to create custom (saved) groups in Sonos. I see you can group speakers adhoc, but still no way to get Alexa to play all the Sonos speakers at once.



Either before or after, grouping works the same with Alexa as it did pre-Alexa. Group the speakers together with the Sonos app then start music playing one 1 and it will play on all grouped speakers

Ah, you mean you want something like multiple saved group eg

eg

Group A = Kitchen + Living Room
Group B = Living Room + Bedroom

Then you want to say "Play xxxx in Group A"

Nice idea, but no, Sonos doesn't do that

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