Sonos One STILL doesn't work with Alexa multi-room music. Must be either Sonos or Echo group!

  • 3 November 2019
  • 5 replies
  • 273 views

After looking at all the hype on the Sonos web site, I purchased a Sonos One from Amazon. I already have several Echo and Chromecast devices all over the house.

Very disappointing results.

After being irritatingly difficult to pair the One with the WIFI, I was shocked to find that Sonos and Echo devices can’t be mixed in the same multi-room music group. You can have Echo devices in a group or Sonos devices in a group, but NOT BOTH. 

Sonos makes a splashy  claim about compatibility with Alexa and specifically Alexa groups, but this is HIGHLY misleading. You can’t actually play to Sonos and Echo devices in the same group.

Obviously, the most common use case by far would be a mixture of both types of devices in the same multi-room music group, but this is not possible. No way to work around it using a Echo Input or Chromecast Audio either because there’s no AUX INPUT either. Truly stupid! 

By the way, the One also doesn’t act as a normal Chromecast Audio / Google Home device either, so it ‘s useless in the Google ecosystem as well.

It’s such a shame, to come so close and then blow it by not finishing the product. After all these years, it’s hard to understand why it would take so long to add such basic functionality. Sonos, please hire some competent programmers! 

I’m sending the One back and will have to go with the Echo Plus to get truly seamless multi-room music integration. 

 

-- R Carlson MD

 

 

 


5 replies

And what's really annoying, with Google searches with sonos AND echo simultaneously, the only results one gets is 'yes...you can control sonos with Alexa's. The question is will we EVER be able to group sonos devices WITH echo devices so that when music is played with that group, the sound comes out of sonos AND echo devices?

Userlevel 7
Badge +21

The question is will we EVER be able to group sonos devices WITH echo devices so that when music is played with that group, the sound comes out of sonos AND echo devices?

 

There’s never been a promise from Sonos or Amazon that their two different multiroom systems would be modified to work together.  There are business and technical reason, patents, etc, of why this isn’t likely to happen, even though customers would like it.  I think we would need to see some big change in the market, like Sonos being sold, or some other companies making changes in the market, before this could realistically happen.

And what's really annoying, with Google searches with sonos AND echo simultaneously, the only results one gets is 'yes...you can control sonos with Alexa's. The question is will we EVER be able to group sonos devices WITH echo devices so that when music is played with that group, the sound comes out of sonos AND echo devices?

Who knows? They use different sync technologies and Sonos have been very protective of the patents they possess. So I wouldn't hold your breath.

Have Sonos been stupid here? Well, for stupid people they seem to be doing OK.

I like my setup. Echo Dots for the voice control and Sonos speakers for sound quality and perfect multiroom sync. But each to their own.

Thanks for your response.   It seems that it would be really fairly simple to execute a 'synchronize sonos with Alexa' function whereby Sonos emits a tone followed by Alexa sending a command to delay or speed up audio.  I understand the quality difference... but, sometimes I just want to pipe music throughout my house with the added depth of Sonos.  Just my wish list. 

Fair enough to wish it, but the suggestion that it would be easy to sync the two systems is way off reality. Keeping Sonos speakers in sync requires constant communication and timing cues between speakers.  Music doesn’t move around the Sonos system as music but as packets of digital data, which have to be reassembled and decoded by each speaker and pushed out as music within a few  milleseconds’ accuracy.  This is clever stuff and integral to the Sonos system. The idea that you can just emit a tone and everything will be fine is totally mistaken. 

Note: my first version of this post used an expression different from ‘totally mistaken’ :grinning:

Reply