Answered

Disabling Wi-Fi on my iPhone didn't stop the music playing on Sonos One Gen 2

  • 15 March 2019
  • 7 replies
  • 109 views

I have purchased a new Sonos One Gen 2 speaker and connected it to my home Wi-Fi network. I want a quick way to stop the music playing when a phone call comes through. I thought I could achieve this by temporarily disabling Wi-Fi on my iPhone. When I tried this with Spotify playing to the speaker, the music continued playing with streaming via 4G. How could this be when the Sonos speaker's connectivity relies on Wi-Fi? Spotify was not running on any other device in my house at the time. The Sonos app stated "You need to be connected to a wireless network to use Sonos" but the Spotify app showed that the music was still outputting to the Sonos One speaker.
icon

Best answer by chicks 15 March 2019, 06:09

How are these commands getting through to the speaker?
Via the 4G connection to the Spotify cloud -> Sonos cloud -> Internet -> your WiFi -> Sonos speaker.
View original

7 replies

Userlevel 7
Badge +21
Sonos relies on WiFi BUT NOT your phone's WiFi. The phone is only a controller sending commands to the players, they get the music from the Internet over your WiFi or a wired connection if you made one.

Using the pause button on your phone's Sonos controller is probably your best bet.
Sonos relies on WiFi BUT NOT your phone's WiFi. The phone is only a controller sending commands to the players, they get the music from the Internet over your WiFi or a wired connection if you made one.

Using the pause button on your phone's Sonos controller is probably your best bet.


When I disable Wi-Fi on my iPhone, Spotify can still continue to stream music via 4G on my phone but isn't the sending of commands broken from the Spotify app on my iPhone to the Sonos speaker without the phone being connected to the same Wi-Fi network on which the speaker is connected?

When you say "your phone's Sonos controller", are you referring to the Sonos app on my iPhone or is there some other shortcut through which the speaker can be controlled in iOS?
When you're playing music on your Sonos, the "player" part exists on your speaker, and is not on your phone. There are two minor 'but's involved, when you're playing "music from this device" or using AirPlay 2, but in most cases, like when playing Spotify, your phone is a remote control, telling the player that lives on the speaker where to go get data from.

What this means is that your phone is communicating to your wifi router and the router is passing the commands on what to do to the speaker. And consequently, when the next song comes up, the speaker reaches back out to tell your phone what the song is, if your phone is still connected, and is still using the Sonos app. But, because what's playing is coming from the speaker, and not your phone, it means you can slip out of the home and go get a pint, and the music will continue playing at home.

But that does mean that when you're sending commands to your speakers, your phone needs to be on the same network (wifi, usually) that your speakers are on, yes.

The Sonos controller, as we commonly refer to it, is indeed the Sonos app you downloaded.

Since you used the term iOS, there's another way that you can use your speaker, completely bypassing the entire Sonos software, which is sending any music you choose from your phone by AIrPlay 2. This is a little heavier on your network use, inside your home, because in most cases, you're getting the music from say Spotify, and then your router is sending it to your phone, and then you're sending it from the phone to the speaker. In a normal Sonos use case, your phone would just tell the speaker where to get the music from, and there would be one instance of the stream being used by the wifi.
Userlevel 7
Badge +25
Some great info, Bruce! One thing to add, when you're using the Spotify app to control what's playing on Sonos, the audio doesn't get sent from your phone to your Sonos player, what happens is the Spotify app sends commands up to the Spotify server, then over to the Sonos servers, then down to your players. That's why once you've connected to a Sonos system using the Spotify app (you'll need to be on the wifi network for this), you can then disconnect from the wireless network and you'll still have control through the Spotify app, until you tell your Sonos system to play something other than Spotify, which breaks the connection.

The best way to stop playing the music when you pick up your phone is to either use voice control "Alexa, stop", or to press the play/pause button on the unit. That is assuming your phone doesn't easily connect to Sonos while you're talking on the phone.
But that does mean that when you're sending commands to your speakers, your phone needs to be on the same network (wifi, usually) that your speakers are on, yes.

Thanks for the detailed response. I am still not clear on this point. If I switch Wi-Fi off on my phone while Spotify is playing on the Sonos speaker, I can click still send commands (such as volume up / down or next song) from my phone and the speaker responds even though my phone is connected to a different (4G) wireless network. How are these commands getting through to the speaker?
How are these commands getting through to the speaker?
Via the 4G connection to the Spotify cloud -> Sonos cloud -> Internet -> your WiFi -> Sonos speaker.
It might be worth pointing out that this is a 'feature' of Spotify Connect. If you were using the Sonos app to control your music, and disconnected the phone from your home wifi, commands like volume up and down (indeed any commands) would have no effect. As stated elsewhere on this thread, the music continues because it is streaming directly to the speaker from the internet via WiFi, not from the phone.

Reply