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Using Alexa to play existing local Sonos playlist

  • 4 October 2017
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Is there support for using Alexa to play local Sonos playlists, or is support limited to the listed online services?
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Best answer by Ryan S 4 October 2017, 23:25

From the announcement post here:



You can use Alexa to start playing from Amazon Music, Amazon Music Unlimited, Pandora, iHeartRadio, SiriusXM, TuneIn Radio, and we’re working to bring Spotify controls in the future too.



Also, any Alexa device on your account can use basic controls, such as play, pause, volume, and skip, on your Sonos players. This works for all services and music on Sonos, started through the Sonos app.
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27 replies

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From the announcement post here:

You can use Alexa to start playing from Amazon Music, Amazon Music Unlimited, Pandora, iHeartRadio, SiriusXM, TuneIn Radio, and we’re working to bring Spotify controls in the future too.

Also, any Alexa device on your account can use basic controls, such as play, pause, volume, and skip, on your Sonos players. This works for all services and music on Sonos, started through the Sonos app.
This is really pretty much useless. With out allowing you to play your music library there is not much need for this integration. The new echo's with improved sound and the cost is so low there is no need to have sonos except for your music library as the sound is adequate for most people. they should have worked FIRST on music library integration as that would have been a game changer.
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I respectfully disagree, as I said in one of the myriad other threads on this exact topic.

Streaming is how most people are consuming their music today. Not everyone but most. It simply doesn't make sense to go after the smaller target first.

It's worth noting too that the initial setup is in fact the easier target too. Sonos isn't doing the heavy lifting on voice recognition here, Alexa is. These features are already built in to Alexa, so it's only a better of "plugging" into them.

I don't mean to be disrespectful, but I think most of the people complaining here aren't understanding the technology in play.
This is really pretty much useless. With out allowing you to play your music library there is not much need for this integration. The new echo's with improved sound and the cost is so low there is no need to have sonos except for your music library as the sound is adequate for most people. they should have worked FIRST on music library integration as that would have been a game changer.

Did you miss the fact that you can do everything except initialize play on anything in the queue? Play, stop, skip, pause, volume up down, etc.
So what your saying is you have to start your playlist manually, but after that you can use echo voice commands to control it?
Yes. As stated by Ryan S right above your rant, a quote from the original announcement. One might want to slow down a little bit and read the announcements before hurling stones. There are quite a few capabilities being overlooked, as well as future capabilities that will address any complaints.
well that's a start, thank you. a complete cheat sheet on what the new update does and how to do it would have been a great help.
Right in the Announcement area, top of the home page. With links to other pages.

https://en.community.sonos.com/announcements-228985/alexa-now-playing-on-sonos-6791301
I'm another one who uses a local music library, and technically I can intuit why this is limited to only the services Amazon has approved for Alexa. The one feature that I would use would be the auto-mute when making an Alexa request.

I just tried it, and it does mute, but if I tell Alexa to cancel (as in cancel the voice request the Echo Dot is now waiting for me to say) it doesn't cancel the request and return to playing, it pauses playback entirely and Alexa intones "I'm sorry, but something went wrong.". This is obviously very far from desirable behavior, but I'll chalk it up to the fact it's a beta.

So to tear down the integration, do I need to do anything other than disable the skill and tell Alexa to forget the Sonos devices? I don't know about other's experiences but telling Alexa to cancel or shut up is very common here - the voice recognition tends to often mishear its wake word. At this point it would seem I would constantly be telling Alexa to resume playback or pulling out my phone to unpause it, and this would not be well-received by the rest of the house. Maybe after this has matured and has more polish I can revisit it.
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Likewise, I'm a little disappointed with the capabilities of the current Alexa integration. I have a comprehensive local music library, and don't have subscriptions to other music services. Its nice to see Sonos have released an Alexa skill, but for me its of limited use.
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Hi, I already own a Play5 and an Echo and have recently added the Alexa skill. I'm considering replacing the Echo with the new Sonos One but wanted to check if I will be able to voice control my Sonos local play lists using the new Sonos One or can it only voice control play lists on the streaming service e.g Amazon Unlimited?
At this time, initiating playback is not supported for local music, though you can start it via the Sonos app and use Alexa for basic controls. Nobody knows if local music support is coming.
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So just to clarify; I could start a playlist using the Sonos app and then adjust tue volume via voice control but not change tracks within the playlist? (sorry if I'm being picky, just wanted to check before I buy one!)
Start it on the Sonos app and you can pause, play, skip tracks, control volume, even ask Alexa "Alexa, what's playing in (room name)" and she will answer. The only thing you can't do is initiate playback or add to the queue because Alexa has no copy of your local index in the cloud.

Try it now using the Echo, no need to buy the One.
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Excellent, thanks very much for your prompt replies!
Have got it working with the Echo - you've just saved me £200 😃
You can use Alexa to initiate multiple Sonos playlists but you have to have a Harmony Hub which can also turn on your amp and set volume, via Yonomi with a routine for each playlist/favourite. I have subscribed to Amazon Unlimited for a month (Apple Music is my usual streamer on Sonos) but haven't explored the playlist set up there yet.
You can use Alexa to initiate multiple Sonos playlists but you have to have a Harmony Hub which can also turn on your amp and set volume, via Yonomi with a routine for each playlist/favourite. I have subscribed to Amazon Unlimited for a month (Apple Music is my usual streamer on Sonos) but haven't explored the playlist set up there yet.

This thread has nothing to do with Yonomi. It is about the official Sonos/Alexa beta implementation. Please do not confuse folks, there are dedicated Yonomi threads in other areas.
Look at the title at the top. I’m sure people will not be confused. This is a wor around until Sonos come up with the goods
Nobody knows if local music support is coming.
Hard to say. Amazon's Connected Speaker APIs, details of which aren't publicly available, only appear to allow cloud-based services. Would love to see the detailed docs for these APIs.

Connected Speaker APIs

The Connected Speaker APIs, available in developer preview today, enable device makers to connect their cloud-based services to AVS. This means that customers can ask Alexa to play music on their favorite wireless or multi-room speakers including brands like Sonos, Sound United, Bose, and Samsung. With the Connected Speaker APIs, device makers can leverage their own proprietary or licensed multi-room synchronization protocols to provide consumers multi-room music experiences that can be controlled by Alexa-enabled devices like the Echo Dot.
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Good thing I only paid $25 for the Dot. I also assumed I could play my local music library. A lot of it is in amazon music because I bought the cd from amazon but still it is frustrating. Controlling playback is good but still seems half a** that I have to initiate it from the app.
I disagree, I like to own my own cd’s/music and have created lots of playlists for various moods etc. I will not be purchasing a Sonos one until Alexa can play my playlists and music from my library.
I understand that there is an alternative purchasable app which will do the as a separate item!
This was something I discovered didn't work this morning and was rather disappointed. It almost feels like the engineers didn't realize there were local playlists.
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Will the capability to use Alexa to play local playlists ever be added? If so, how will we be notified?
Will the capability to use Alexa to play local playlists ever be added? If so, how will we be notified?

Sonos has publicly stated that their focus is cloud based streaming services. They have redesigned their app to look more like the UI typically found on streaming services. They have not made any effort to update SMB v1 to a newer more secure version. An intention to add voice support for local libraries has never been mentioned in any forward looking announcement from them.

Based on that I would venture the chances to be slim to none.
Wrong again upstate. The CEO stated in a podcast just last week that they intend to bring local library functions to voice control.

Around 32:15 in:

https://www.recode.net/2018/2/2/16961978/sonos-patrick-spence-apple-homepod-alexa-virtual-assistants-too-embarrassed-swisher-goode-podcast