8.2 Is Completely Frustratingly Awful

  • 17 November 2017
  • 67 replies
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Userlevel 4
I created an account here so I can vent. This latest version of the app is horrible. There appears to be rhyme or reason about where anything is located. For some bizarre reason I cannot search for music from the music tab. On the search tab there are buttons at the bottom... but the actual search icon is a dim thing at the top. BTW, what is with unreachable buttons at the bottom? When I am holding my device my thumbs point up, not down. On a scale of 1 to 10 the usability of this version is about minus 3.

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67 replies

Userlevel 1
I agree about latest App UI. I can't even remember what v7 looked like, but I don't ever remember struggling to know how to navigate, like I do regulary with v8. Feels like one of those cases where UX designers are trying too hard to simplify and took away some o the basic intuitive navigation. It's also really hard to see which speakers are playing different sources, and I don't like that when multiple speakers are in a group, sometimes I can't see the name of a grouped speaker at all. I have to first search the whole list, then realizing it is not there, start searching the groups to see which one it is embedded in.
Userlevel 3
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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 3
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At dinner the other day I asked my wife to select and play a radio station in the Family Room zone. Gave up after five minutes. :(:(
Thanks for the feedback, we're making sure to share with the team..

Such "sharing" is all well and good, Ryan but what are you actually planning to change?

You are losing your loyal customers' goodwill with the mess that's been made with v8 and I'm already investigating alternative solutions for my new house due to this update...

What Sonos need to do is be more open about what you're planning to change, you're usual approach of not providing details just isn't enough now with the mess you've made (IMO and that's all I care about as a customer).

e.g. Are you going to remove (or provide an option to avoid) the white-on-white interface?
Userlevel 7
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I honestly couldn't recomend the system to my friends in good faith, the hardware is excellent but completely ruined by the mess that v8xx was and has become.

Every week you cling onto this app despite all the complaints from loyal and paying customers the brand is being devalued.

Dread to think what comes out of the software "development" office next..
Userlevel 3
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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.
Userlevel 7
Badge +16
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.
Userlevel 1
I agree, everything worked "ok" but now nothing works, another great update for Sonos. #wantmy$back
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 2
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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
Badge +16
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.
Userlevel 6
Badge +8
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.
Userlevel 4
Badge +4
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 2
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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...:-(
Userlevel 2
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Agreed. The new android app STINKS. The bright skin is hideous, and that's the least of the problems. Everything -- and I mean EVERYTHING -- that was quick and easy and intuitive to do in the old version, has been moved and changed and hidden and made more complicated. The old app wasn't perfect, but it was easy to use. I have to re-learn the new app every time I pick up my phone. Pandora functions are much harder to use, and the listing of stations is random, rather than alphabetic. There is not one single change in this app that helps me. I hate it. I hate it. I hate it.

And, when are Android users going to get trueplay?

I've got $1400 worth of Sonos gear, and you go and make my primary controller much worse. Thanks a bunch.

Are you listening, Sonos?
Userlevel 6
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Phew that was bloody difficult. :D:D

What you are not getting is that most people don't think like a programmer. Let alone they are actually keen on doing so for something as simple as turning on the radio.
Sonos - please fix app as this is most un-intuitive user interface .. What have you done .. Hope you are working on a fix .. Pandora use to display a great UI on IPAD .. Now un-usable ..
Userlevel 6
Badge +7
Phew that was bloody difficult. :D:D

What you are not getting is that most people don't think like a programmer. Let alone they are actually keen on doing so for something as simple as turning on the radio.


Stop. That hardly requires the mind of a programmer. As I keep saying I am not saying that the new app is better than the old app. What I am rejecting is the notion that it is now unusable. That is hyperbole. The way some people are behaving you would swear with the old app all you had to do was think about something you wanted to hear and it would start playing. It required steps as well to get something done. It is partly about muscle memory. A simple effort to retrain your brain and you will find yourself skipping around the app as I am now.

That does not mean you have to agree with the changes. Like I still do not agree with some of the queue management changes made earlier.

But oh “I rate the app minus 3”, “I can’t figure out how to do anything”. “I am going to sell all my units”. “I can no longer recommend this product”. People are free to opinions but come on. It hasn’t made a fine system all of a sudden awful. I still hold that the changes here are more form than substance. Some of these things can be fixed.

Let’s wait to see what Sonos does with some of the useful feedback and not puerile comments.
At dinner the other day I asked my wife to select and play a radio station in the Family Room zone. Gave up after five minutes. :(:(

Get a Dot.
“Alexa, play station KMHD in the family room”
OK

Done
Userlevel 3
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I honestly couldn't recomend the system to my friends in good faith, the hardware is excellent but completely ruined by the mess that v8xx was and has become.

Every week you cling onto this app despite all the complaints from loyal and paying customers the brand is being devalued.

Dread to think what comes out of the software "development" office next..


When people show interest in SONOS I don’t recommend, nor condem. I simply tell them to spend around an hour here reading forum posts, then decide.
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.
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.
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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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....
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.