8.2 Is Completely Frustratingly Awful

  • 17 November 2017
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67 replies

It's a shame this has got rather personal. It is clear that some users are struggling to do the basics with the new app, such as selecting a room and some music to play in it. That doesn't make them stupid.

Yes I agree.Nobody needs to feel stupid, unless it is whichever Sonos UI czar it is who is insisting upon form over function despite copious feedback and complaint.

Speaking of wives; mine has abandoned the Sonos controller UI, and now just relies upon that excellent new hardware pause button long-press behaviour, which tags her Sonos zone onto whatever I am playing.

The now its here, and now it isn't here, menu bar is a big part of the problem IMO.

* it is at the bottom of the screen (?!) ... which isn't helpful... much of the rest of the app has its controls at the top (the hamburger menus, repeat, shuffle, edit, all the search tabs )
* it is black with small dull grey icons ... so it blends in with the blackness which is already at the bottom of the screen, ie. the three android widgets and the devices bezel ... all other control widgets are black on white
* I get to it by dragging the now playing display down, so my my hand is covering its position when it toggles into view, and it is basically just a thickening of the bottom bezel, which is easy to miss

And the Now Playing screen, with or without the queue display, gives little clue as to how to find it. There is a hamburger menu widget, which looks as if it could be the place, but it isn't.

So regardless of the fact that the Now Playing screen looks better without it, ... the menu bar is an extremely important element of the UI, and it isn't well enough designed to be toggled away from view IMO.
Userlevel 1
Completely agree the new app is absolutely terrible and completely illogical. Never had any problem navigating previous versions, but this one!!! If I stream radio and then go to watch TV I often find I need to adjust the TV volume, every time I go to do this it takes me 5min to figure out how to get the TV volume control. What a way to ruin a great set of hardware product.
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I have actually just given up playing music. It's too clunky to figure out how to select my speakers that I wish to play on, potentially re-group them as appropriate, WITHOUT bumping other groupings, and still get back to selecting music.

Add to this the fact that for some inexplicably painful reason the whole system now lags, speakers go zombie, etc -- none of this was an issue before, the hardware was mostly always perfect.

Here's what this breaks down to for me:

The Sonos product is comprised of the hardware plus the interface. I bought multiple rooms worth of Sonos gear, Connect, etc because of how both the hardware and interface worked at the time.

Since the majority of the Sonos interface is the app, the app is hugely important. Gone are the days when a home tech product's majority control is based on immutable hardware and the app is just a convenience toy to impress your friends. (e.g. "Ooh I paused the DVD player with a curl script...")

By Sonos forcefully changing the app UI to this degree the very product I have purchased has been changed too significantly, and without my asking for it. My household total usage of music has seriously decreased while we wait for a fix.

Either Sonos fixes the clunky UI and zombie network or I'm out. It's no big deal -- this is now a different product and I'll find a better fit. Yes?
Userlevel 7
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You are 100% correct, the hardware is next to useless without the app and they should be viewed as a whole system. Changing the apps is not a minor undertaking, they are the backbone of the whole system.
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Yes I agree.Nobody needs to feel stupid, unless it is whichever Sonos UI czar it is who is insisting upon form over function despite copious feedback and complaint.


Ok. So it is ok to insult the Sonos design team but Sonos users who come on here making clearly exaggerated claims that make zero sense and in some cases lying should not be challenged?????

Look I made a joke earlier in this post which may have been a bit inappropriate and I retract it. @penzzz

However I hold 200% to the view that there are many on these boards making overreaching comments, feigning ignorance etc all because they do not like the change. I ain’t tell you that you must like it. I get and understand a few of the concerns well but we should be measured and reasonable in our comments as well. Continue to state the specific issues you see and why you think they are issues as many times as you wish. But do not come on here asking to be taken seriously with “oh I can’t figure out anything”.
8.2 did break favourites and rendered that feature meaningless as far as Sonos playlists are concerned and that upset me more than any of the UI changes; I too am convinced that the latter can be learnt in a few minutes and in a couple of days of use, one can get used to them again. So many of the reactions seem over the top.

The problem as with any upgrade is that this gets compounded and the water then muddied by controller stability issues caused by IP address conflicts that arise after every upgrade where address reservation has not been done. And these are also attributed to the UI change, when these are two different issues. But controller instability + UI changes can make the system feel broken, for sure. But UI lagging and network going zombie as has been stated has NOTHING to do with the change in the UI.

Those that see flawless updates will not have so much trouble with just the UI change, I believe. If they give both the change and themselves a fair go at getting to know the changes.
I so agree. I have just "upgraded" to 8.2 and now I can't access anything in my library or services, from my phone, laptop or ipad. It all worked fine before. I wanted to listen to some music before going to a Depeche Mode gig...get myself in the vibe....now I am just frustratred and annoyed.
It has to be frustrating and Sonos is adding to the fire by rolling out updates this frequently.

Power down all units including router and modem. First repower to reboot the modem, then the router, then wired to router Sonos units and then all wireless units including devices that host controllers. Before every "then", wait till reboot of units in that step is complete.

That should flush out IP address issues. If music now starts, consider reserving IP addresses to prevent recurrence after future upgrades.
I just updated to v8.2 and it’s rendered my iPhone app useless. It crashes after 1-2 seconds. I have to get my laptop out or kindle to run my speakers. This is VERY VERY frustrating and guess what I can only call Sonos Mon - Fri 9-5....I have a job and don’t work from home. This has to be fixed. I have a soundbar and 4 Play 1’s and ran them all off my iPhone. I am fuming, this is clearly an issue with v8.2. I have tried everything on the forums
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Sonos users who come on here making clearly exaggerated claims that make zero sense and in some cases lying should not be challenged?????

I hold 200% to the view that there are many on these boards making overreaching comments

This is ironic.
BurtBushell - if you are referring to my comment then I can tell you with certainty that my iPhone app stopped working once I upgraded to 8.2. And the controller on my Mac crashes every time it goes to screen saver. I have all this sonos kit that cannot be operated from the iPhone app - the main reason I bought the sonos set up in the first place.
Userlevel 6
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BurtBushell - if you are referring to my comment then I can tell you with certainty that my iPhone app stopped working once I upgraded to 8.2. And the controller on my Mac crashes every time it goes to screen saver. I have all this sonos kit that cannot be operated from the iPhone app - the main reason I bought the sonos set up in the first place.

Not referring to you at all my friend. I was generally referring to users who claim the new app in terms of form and function had become impossible to use. I just find that feedback a bit over the top. Again not to suggest that the latest changes are blessings from above but part of it is about having a reasonable openness to change.

In any event I think in all fairness we have stated our cases and it’s up to Sonos now to respond (or not) in the way they see fit. I am done trying to understand reactions to this.
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At the end of the day most of us can get by with the new app. I’d describe the situation with a lawn mowing analogy. When I want to mow my lawn I go to my garage, where my mower (22” blade) is waiting. I start it up, follow it around my lawn until finished, then return the mower to my garage. Now, I go to my garage. The mower might be there, or it might be on my back porch, or it might be in my basement. When I finally find the mower and start cutting the grass, I learn someone has removed my 22” blade and replaced it with an 11” blade making the job take twice as long.

My primary complaints center around lack of intuitiveness (my wife’s inability to navigate zones, never getting to attempt music selection) and my belief that It takes twice as long to get to my music. Neither is acceptable to me as a consumer.

Yes, I’m bored and spend too much time on this. Done now.
I am amazed that Sonos has not added a feature to specify a group of rooms to stream to as part of the individual alarm configuration. The “include grouped rooms” option is just not good enough. You end up having to either remember to group rooms before going to bed, or suffer multiple streams being established by means of separate alarms and the resultant lack of audio sync. This really should have been improved when the new alarm features were added.
Userlevel 4
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I've held off commenting on the new UI for a couple of weeks thinking I just needed to get used to it. And to some extent I have. However, to my wife and younger members of my family, it is still confusing. My main criticism of the new iOS UI is that you really have to concentrate on what you're doing and step through it in the correct order. Before, you didn't used to have to think about it - just select your room, select your music and play. It was easy.

I first bought Sonos in 2009 on the strength of the WAF (wife acceptance factor) - she couldn't get on with the Logitech app for much the same reasons as she is now struggling with the new Sonos UI. We sat down yesterday and I tried to take her through the app. Her comment was "imagine the people at Sonos listening to this conversation - they'd be mortified to hear how difficult they've made it!"

Another thing is that the old CR200 controller no longer functions at all (I'm told by Sonos support that it doesn't have enough processor power to cope with the new firmware). I loved this controller for its simplicity. You didn't have to fiddle around unlocking your phone and firing up the app just to mute the music because someone's at the door or your phone rings (aargh hold on a minute while I start Sonos to turn down the volume!)

Add in Friday night friends in our kitchen when we've all had a few and the new UI becomes a real challenge.

All in all, I've got to say that Sonos has become a bit of an irritation in our house - no longer a thing of beauty.

No complaints about the Windows app, this is still really straightforward.
Userlevel 7
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As John B has said many times in this forum, just stay well away from the red rooms function at the bottom of now playing screen, it creates all sorts of chaos, who knows where it will end up playing, and then getting things back drives everyone completely nuts 😠
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Add in Friday night friends in our kitchen when we've all had a few and the new UI becomes a real challenge.

All in all, I've got to say that Sonos has become a bit of an irritation in our house - no longer a thing of beauty.

No complaints about the Windows app, this is still really straightforward.


This exactly

I expect the "We heard you" app update will be nothing more than an option on background color....
Userlevel 6
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I know how to use the new app. I can make it work. But after weeks of using it, I still despise the new app. I find myself creating shortcuts with Macronos on my Android devices to ease some of my frustrations. Too bad there is nothing nearly as good as Macronos for iOS devices.
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As John B has said many times in this forum, just stay well away from the red rooms function at the bottom of now playing screen, it creates all sorts of chaos, who knows where it will end up playing, and then getting things back drives everyone completely nuts :@

While this may be sound advice, it highlights how poor the new app is. That we should ignore a key feature of the new app in order for it to function better says it all.

I agree with others. I can use the app, I can get music playing but I constantly need to pause, think, look at what room is in focus etc etc. I have never had to do this before and I started on version 4.

A month or so on and I still dislike it.
Userlevel 7
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At the end of the day most of us can get by with the new app. I’d describe the situation with a lawn mowing analogy. When I want to mow my lawn I go to my garage, where my mower (22” blade) is waiting. I start it up, follow it around my lawn until finished, then return the mower to my garage. Now, I go to my garage. The mower might be there, or it might be on my back porch, or it might be in my basement. When I finally find the mower and start cutting the grass, I learn someone has removed my 22” blade and replaced it with an 11” blade making the job take twice as long.

My primary complaints center around lack of intuitiveness (my wife’s inability to navigate zones, never getting to attempt music selection) and my belief that It takes twice as long to get to my music. Neither is acceptable to me as a consumer.

Yes, I’m bored and spend too much time on this. Done now.


That's one of the best posts I've read on here, sums it up very well.
Well, having just convinced my partner to try Sonos, setting up play base and two play 1's (after some multiple re-attempts to even get the app to find the players) we find the app controller to be utterly non intuitive and creating sheer rage full frustration. Songs dropping out mid stream, then another random song starts, and stops. Or maybe it plays through. But what next? Tune-in channels start, stop. This, THIS! Is what I have been waiting to experience?!?! I just bought this system. It may well go right back in the box as I got two good hours of "this is awesome sound!" Before next day got up and all of a sudden the app did not "see" the play1's and it all went to hell. I am not the most technically apt person. But this is why I chose Sonos over Bose. I had heard how effortless it was. HA! The amount of effort and brow sweat I exerted over this is already testing my generally high patience levels.
Userlevel 6
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Well, having just convinced my partner to try Sonos, setting up play base and two play 1's (after some multiple re-attempts to even get the app to find the players) we find the app controller to be utterly non intuitive and creating sheer rage full frustration. Songs dropping out mid stream, then another random song starts, and stops. Or maybe it plays through. But what next? Tune-in channels start, stop. This, THIS! Is what I have been waiting to experience?!?! I just bought this system. It may well go right back in the box as I got two good hours of "this is awesome sound!" Before next day got up and all of a sudden the app did not "see" the play1's and it all went to hell. I am not the most technically apt person. But this is why I chose Sonos over Bose. I had heard how effortless it was. HA! The amount of effort and brow sweat I exerted over this is already testing my generally high patience levels.

You’re absolutely right about the app being non-intuitive. However, it’s highly unlikely that it is the cause of your problems with playing audio or setting up Sonos. It sounds like you’ve got a networking issue somewhere. If you search through these forums you’ll find lots of tips on how to resolve that. Often the problem is conflicting IP addresses, although there are other potential issues. Sonos actually does work very well once is it set up properly. The first thing you might want to do is to unplug your entire network and then start plugging everything back in, starting with the router and then working forward through any switches you might have and then the Sonos gear.
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Perfect timing to put the final nail in the Sonos UI coffin.
Middle of Thanksgiving Day.
Like I have nothing better to do than jack with software that used to work
Was playing music on the Living Room Connect. MacBook and iPad are in the basement.
Cell phone rings, try to pause the music from the phone but I'm forced to upgrade the controller.
Run to the basement where the MacBook is booted up and pause the music.
Now, all devices want the controller updated.
I reluctantly comply.
Now, iPhone and iPad only show the basement Sonos Connect (I have 3, one in the living room one in the basement, one In the garage).
MacBook needs me to create a new Sonos account. Huh!?
I used to sing the praises of the Sonos system, but now I'm beyond frustrated.
Typical corporate mentality: Change to justify my job, not to improve a product.
You'll be seeing my system on e-bay soon...:-(
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Update:
Sitting in silence, I continued to revive my Sonos system.
All devices are running the latest software.
All controller devices are running the latest version.
MacBook shows only the Living Room Connect.
iPad shows only the Basement Connect.
iPhone shows only the Basement connect.
***Mind you, I was listening to the Living Room system only earlier today.***
So I begin adding the other Connect...
1. On the MacBook, I begin searching for a new device.
2. On it's own, the iPad finds a new device that is not linked to the system.
3. Okay, so on the iPad, I link the new device to my Sonos Account.
(did I say you must establish a Sonos account now to link your devices to?)
The device now shows up on all controlling devices.
But that's only 2 Connects.
I begin again. Steps 1 thru 3.
Now all 3 Connects show up on all controllers.

The funniest thing is now the red Room Selection at the bottom of the screen works beautifully!!!!!

All this was frustrating to deal with, but I have to thank the Sonos Software folks for fixing the Room Selector.
Finally after trying to upgrade the desktop controller through the UPGRADE option in the app, I downloaded the app directly and ran the Windows installer.

The update sort of worked. I still had to run the Update option from the app, then go through all the steps of updating the speakers and with having close to 20 devices it took quite some time to complete. However then I had to re-register my account and update all of my product information to Sonos.

Version 8.2.1 still has problems in the way that you cannot sort the stations you have saved in Pandora in alphabetical order, instead the app has them listed by date they were added? WTF. Why is there no sorting functionality of the app. The same holds true for the Android app, no sorting by alphabetic.

The app is still broken for being able to access stored music that I have on a media server. It links to the folder, but it cannot play any files. I more than 500 CD's stored in digital format, more than 5000 songs that can no longer be played by the Sonos controller. This is unacceptable.