Windows 10 Controller

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Do you have plans to ship a Windows 10 Store app which can be used from multiple Windows devices (PC, Phone, Xbox) to control the Sonos experience?

We are a Windows household and the desktop controller that exists for PC today is heavy and not very touch friendly. The third party Windows Phone app, Phonos, is fills a void, but not nearly as feature rich as the Android or iOS app. This has been requested for several years ( and the product management team does not address this gap beyond a blanket we have no news statement. I understand that choices have to be made. If you do not plan to address this in the net 12 months then can you at least make your API public with your apps being first and best examples of how to use that API so others can fill the gap for you?

Instead of a lot of "+1" and "me too" threads please show your support by voting on the poll below so we can get a count of the number of people who are interested in a Windows 10 app.

Best answer by Kenneth R 15 April 2016, 19:05

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Would you use a Windows 10 Sonos controller app?

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411 replies

So your post that said Denon was superior, that you are "moving on" and your Sonos will be on e-bay UK was an exaggeration. Thanks for clarifying what we already knew.

To all you folks contemplating Denon . . . the above Windows user is unable to fully abandon Sonos for Denon, even after stating how much "superior" the Denon gear is, and being told Denon is going to support his desired OS version. Point Sonos!
Urgh. OK, I have been trying desperately to keep it on track about the app as it is l a Sonos forum, for the betterment of Sonos customers.

Truth be told, yes the Denon is probably better IMHO. Setup is trickier, but sound quality is richer, the equivalent speakers are cheaper, aux in and Bluetooth across the board.

For guests, I could play direct from Spotify as a device on my network, allowing me to use the nicer interface.

Downsides are the lack of an equivalent sound bar and sub (my future plans).

Now, as Sonos are locked in a legal battle with Denon re these, I really didn't want to post this to THEIR forum, but you seem unable to concentrate on the subject - the improvement of the desktop app.

I actually went to the store to pick up a play 5 for offline play for the aux in (something I also reached on this forum).

Now I fear the rest of the thread will now be taken up with you trying to rebuke this post. I'm happy to answer your questions in private, so would you kindly keep on subject on here? Thanks.

In one breath you describe Denon products as being better and cheaper and yet you still go out to a store to pick up a Sonos Play-5, just to use its Aux line-in for playing audio offline ... You are not making any sense to anyone here. If you believe Denon is better and it has line-in and Bluetooth, why on earth did you choose the Sonos Play-5 option?

You claim you want to sell all your Sonos equipment on eBay-UK, mainly because Sonos have chosen to concentrate development of their 'remote' controller on iOS and Android platforms instead of Windows, but you won't consider buying a different controller, even though that would be 'far better value' than eventually replacing your main home audio system with Denon, who still have their app in the development stage?

You really seem quite indecisive and need to look a bit more carefully perhaps at some of your choices, as they certainly do not appear to be ones that I would choose to follow.

Sonos have made their viewpoint known in relation to some of their future development strategy at this moment in time and whilst we all know things can change, we have to all learn to accept and go along with those decisions. Your protest at the Windows desktop development of their controller, has undoubtedly been noted. I can't say it has drummed up any degree of overwhelming support here. It appears therefore, that your views, are clearly in the minority.

I personally have moved away from Windows and chosen to follow the Sonos development, both on Android and iOS (more recently). Clearly you have not made that choice and are just 'digging in your heels' and trying to stick, perhaps 'loyally', with the Windows platform for controlling your speakers.

So you seem to have reached a stage where you either 'jump ship' and begin your Sonos eBay sale (don't forget to send me the sales link) or you accept the direction that Sonos have decided to go.

My decision would be not to waste my money selling my much loved existing Sonos equipment for less than I paid for it and replacing it all again with Denon, all for the sake of simply buying an Android or iOS controller and moving away from the Windows platform. Loyalty is actually holding you back.

By the way I have two Windows PC's in my home, but I very rarely use the Sonos Desktop Controller, as I do find the small mobile hand-held controllers far more convenient and accessible.

It seems sensible to me that Sonos have decided to concentrate their current development towards the smart mobile arena and they have now selected the two most widely-used mobile platforms iOS and Android. Furthermore they have made the choice to give away their controller software to the customer, free of charge and ad-free, that's quite a big step for a company that once sold its own CR100/200 hardware controllers.

I really don't see any reason to moan about the halted development of the Windows platform, Sonos is just providing its services for the 'majority' of its customers.
Guys, you're so focused on that fact to have bought something else, you're losing trail of the discussion.

Simply put; there are more features on the Denon kit and it's cheaper.

Hardware refresh is not something Sonos can change quickly, development cycles being years for hardware.

Price, questionable, but I doubt there is much room for Sonos to compete with.

Where there is opportunity for differentiation however, is in the user experience of the software, the point of this thread.

So how's about you stop focusing on me and my purchases, and start putting your passion into helping the company you love so cleary make a difference.

I do find it interesting that the other raging topic on the controllers forums is around the Spotify connect, which covers much of the same points as I lost here (I.e. Make the software better to use!).
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Is the horse breathing yet?
I am soon buying a new house and am investigating and looking at investing in a sound system and also upgrading a music streaming service to premium. So I am disappointed that both the leading Wi-fi speaker speaker maker and the leading music streaming service have decided not to have a Windows 10 UWP (In the case of the latter, partly because they have recently revealed they have signed an exclusive with Sony/Playstation 4)

I have a couple of Windows 10 touchscreens 2in1s and would love to easily operate a Sonos UWP whilst they are in tent mode- good for parties etc. The lack of UWP- and no future intentions to create one from Sonos- is therefore *one* of the factors that I will have to consider when weighing up my options on what to buy. Other factors- on the plus side for Sonos- sound quality, ease of use, supported accessories from other manufacturers. Other factors- on the minus side- lack of hi-res support (although whether it makes a *real* difference is something I want to investigate), and also lack of support for dts etc which might mean going down a Dolby Atmos Home cinema route for playing Ultra HD Blurays, although perhaps adding additional speakers elsewhere in the house.

Anyway my 2p worth for the attention and consideration of Sonos reps monitoring this board (i.e. no insulting/sarcastic replies needed from posters saying there will *never* be a UWP Sonos app, or who want to confuse my needs by mentioning Windows Mobile low sales stats, etc.)

Sonos 'Reps' monitoring 'everything' including sales etc, have taken notice of the majority, that's why there are tablet (tent) apps already on iOS and Android that look similar to the screenshots I have posted below...

It's just the case that such Sonos app development is not on Windows PC/Surface or WM...probably because Sonos after many months of careful research/consultation and consideration decided to halt the WM development... as announced by a Sonos 'Rep' on this forum.

If you look at my last screenshot... I can understand why they have taken that decision.

This protest at the Sonos Windows development for 'Surface' or any other Windows Tablet/PC in many respects, seems rather late .. hence the references here to horses (dead or alive) and the words 'flogging' and 'bolted' just keep popping up in the thread.
So how's about you stop focusing on me and my purchases, and start putting your passion into helping the company you love so cleary make a difference.

You just don't get it, do you? We don't think the software needs to be made better, especially when Sonos is transitioning to voice. Not everybody thinks the way you do, especially when you seem to have found a solution more to your liking and yet, here you still are. We find it utterly baffling that you think Sonos is going to formerly announce no UWP app is being made, then after a brilliantly enlightening series of posts from one doggedly determined poster, coupled with a decidedly idle threat to move to Denon and sell your Sonos on e-bay; that they are going to suddenly go back and reassess their corporate road map. It's crazy! Please, do us and yourself a favor - Accept their word that no UWP app is coming. Sonos hardly ever makes definitive statements on their roadmap, but this is one and when they make a public announcement, it is forged in steel, and I've never seen them change their mind.

As I said, life is short. Go enjoy your Denon!
Is the horse breathing yet?

That horse quit breathing years ago.
Ken, those figures refer to mobile market segment. I think you'll find desktop and 2 in 1 devices quite different and quoted in my previous responses and I cited an example device to boot.

As I, room13 and others keep pointing out, you keep referring back to smart phones.

If you don't understand the differences, PM me and I'll take you through it.
If you look at my last screenshot... I can understand why they have taken that decision.
"Poster links to screenshot of Windows Mobile low sales stats"

Thank you for your reply KG- but it is almost pavlovian isn't it- someone mentions their desire for Sonos to (re)consider developing a Windows UWP app for their PC, asks for this not to be confused with Windows Mobile.... and someone responds with a comment on Windows Mobile low sales.

A number of companies have recently announced their decision to switch producing from Android tablets to W10 2in1s, which seem to be gaining momentum among the 350 million active window devices so far. The idea that anything is fixed- especially where tech is concerned is not necessarily the best position to hold.

Anyway, it remains *one* factor in my future buying decisions. I might be back on this community forum if I have any questions on Sonos- but I won't be back on this thread- not including you KG- but this thread is quite toxic.
el_fal ... of course those figures represent the mobile market. You need to get your head around the fact that the Sonos Controller development has altered and is now aimed at the mobile market and the company has chosen the two biggest MOBILE platforms... Android and iOS. You are the one not grasping the situation here.

Really, if I was researching and going out to buy my Sonos Wireless Multiroom Home Audio System today... My aim would be to have a newish Android or Apple mobile or tablet to control it all, not a Windows PC, nor even a MAC PC, nor a CR100/200 controller (even though they are all supported to some lesser degree) .. I would have looked to see where Sonos were aiming their present research and development.

No doubt in the months/years ahead some older versions of both iOS and Android will fall by the wayside for development too and I will have to replace my iPhone 5 perhaps for some later model... We all just have to move with the times.

Hence the mobile market statistics shown are entirely relevant... Think mobile/tablet market and you might see the 'penny drop'.
One other thing that I believe is very important to mention here too, is Sonos seem to do there very best to continue to support even the now rather old CR100 hardware controllers, so that they can still be used today.

The company do their very best to take their older existing customers with them, albeit those customers may not get to see the new developments like 'Trueplay Tuning' for example. They don't just abandon the existing customer, or try to lose those people entirely.

Not every company will try to think that way... They do all they can to keep the existing customer onboard.

My recommendation really is don't simply abandon & sell your entire Sonos system, but get yourself a cheap alternative iOS/Android mobile/tablet controller to 'compliment' what you have already.

I should add that whilst Android has some additional features, that the Sonos Trueplay feature I mentioned, is currently only supported by iOS. The reason for that, I believe, is Android is an open platform, used on lots of different branded hardware devices and some in-built microphones were unable to satisfy the Trueplay requirements. I think however that could change in the future. I guess that too shows you cannot please everyone, but there are often some valid reasons for the decisions made by Sonos.

I can see similar reasons for the company beginning to move away from the Desktop PC/Mac, towards the Mobile/Tablet market. No doubt the often mentioned added Voice Control will also bring a further dimension to these things in the future. Sonos has expressed a wish to keep existing customers onboard with that development too.
Here's the way I see it (all opinion, no inside info). Voice is coming, and it will be the default control interface for things like "Play some Black Eyed Peas", "Play my post-punk apocalyptic playlist" or "Play BBC 5 radio". Mobile apps will be the secondary controller, used for things like adding to playlists, adding to favorites, specific searches, or things more complicated than "Play XYZ.". The PC controller will be the tertiary controller, for things like adding URLs for customs stations, adding music services, and other Settings/Setup things. Nobody needs a modern customized UI for tertiary Settings/Setup. Indeed, the Alexa app on iOS/Android is a minimal basic settings/reporting functions list with a very utilitarian look, because 95% of the time you aren't using it, you are using voice. Alexa on the PC is just a webpage mimicking the same minimalist Alexa iOS/Android app. So similar to Amazon, I just don't see Sonos spending the money on a new modern UI for something which will soon be a tertiary controller.

From the same website that reported the Phish app was made by Sonos and soon to be released, with the same vague unattributed quotes from anonymous customer support reps who are "reported to have said"? 😃 Yeah, that's a definitive statement if I ever heard one. Much more definitive than if a company comes right out and says they aren't doing something.

Besides, this is the Amazon Store shopping app. It has nothing at all to do with Alexa, which is voice controlled (as Sonos will soon be), and thus has no need for a new Windows app (hence the basic Web based interface for Alexa).
Fun reading about all the people here NOT using the windows stuff talking about windows stuff...
And all the English speaking people talking about how awsome voice controll is gonna be...

As someone not living in US or a english speaking country (speaking english fine though), I can tell you that all voice controll up until now (Siri, google now, Cortana, Alexa) is utter crap outside of the US.

All we (people who DO use the windows stuff) want, is a modern, touch friendly, multi search interface on oure modern, touch friendly windows PC's 🙂
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dNexusb - I agree that the vast majority of voice control is useless. Siri, Alexa etc. are great building blocks but usefulness in any meaningful way in peoples lives is a good ways off. Too many different protocols for voice control and automation right now as everyone is jockeying for position in the market. Alexa being less proprietary seems to be more on the right track then most.
Fun reading about all the people here NOT using the windows stuff talking about windows stuff...
And all the English speaking people talking about how awsome voice controll is gonna be...

As someone not living in US or a english speaking country (speaking english fine though), I can tell you that all voice controll up until now (Siri, google now, Cortana, Alexa) is utter crap outside of the US.

All we (people who DO use the windows stuff) want, is a modern, touch friendly, multi search interface on oure modern, touch friendly windows PC's :)

Unfortunately for you and others, Sonos has done the research and has decided the benefits of catering to your market do not outweigh the lack of return on investment. As stated by their rep, this was not a decision they took lightly or made in haste. Your only solution is to switch mobile devices, or seek out an alternative product if and when one decides to support a UWP app. Not what you wanted to hear, but like other very vocal, very adamant Windows supporters in this thread before you have said . . . at least you have a final answer and can make your decision. That is if you accept that answer as final. If you don't accept their announcement, there's nothing Sonos nor anyone else can do to help you and you'll just have to keep shouting into the wind.

Yes, I'm not a voice-control enthusiast either, but I am prepared to keep an open mind.

I have used Windows since Windows 3.0 and DOS 6.0 in the early 90’s and have installed every version of Windows since then, including some server and business editions. I currently use Windows 10, with stardock Start 10. (I still do not like the current start menu).

I have CR100/CR200 Sonos controllers. I have in the past used Android phone & tablets and more recently I have switched to iOS.

I will probably purchase MAC PC's when my Windows PC hardware needs replacing in the next few years.

All said and done I presently choose to use iOS for controlling my Sonos devices.

I do not try to stick to any one company. I tend to go with what I believe is 'best value' at the time of purchase and try to look long-term for things that suit my personal requirements. I have had to adapt to different company trends and decisions.

I have not been a fan of Windows, post Windows 7. Windows 8 was a disaster IMHO.

Android does not appear (to me) to be as user friendly iOS.

iOS is extremely restrictive in many areas and it's rather expensive and very quickly becomes out of date.

Hence I don't favour any company, but use all, to achieve my outcome.

I can't see a valid reason to dispose/replace my Sonos system because of the lack of Windows development of its controller on that one platform.

Some people need to be more adaptable here and make better choices and not cut off their nose to spite their face. I think I said that already.
I get that Sonos has made some research and made a statement about this stuff...

But "Your only solution is to switch mobile devices, or seek out an alternative product if and when one decides to support a UWP app"?

How is saying to the company making my products "I would like to have you make this thing, so I can enjoy your product more" not an option?

How are Sonos going to change there mind if we (who WOULD like a windows interface with touch) do not tell them about our wants for the products?

Fyi.: I do have both windows and android devices for my Sonos system. All I (and others) are saying are that the windows (and OSX for that mater) player are in need of a upgrade.
That's the point: Sonos is not going to change their mind. Unless there is something about the market which has changed (which there isn't), why would they change their decision based on a couple postings by Windows fans? Can't you see that the time for that has far past? Do you not think they have already figured in the backlash? Sonos knew it was going to lose customers over this, if they were willing to suffer lost sales, how much sway is going to come from the very few who cling onto Sonos hoping they change their mind? It is at this point a useless endeavor, truly shouting into the wind.
Indeed voice control is a nice feature for controlling Sonos in the future. As dNexusb and Chris mentioned voice control will be great in the USA but outside the States it still needs lots of improvement. Also I'm still wondering how voice control will work when you play your music fairly loud or when you play an audiobook. You could even record an audio file with voice commands to control your home automation. But this is all off-topic.

Indeed I would also like to have a Windows 10 UWP controller from Sonos. Which is, due to the direction Sonos has chosen for its product development, not to be expected in the nearby future. However to overcome this there are some third-party controllers that will work nicely with your Sonos system like Phonos, FTScontroller and the one that I use currently on both my Surface Pro 3 and Lumia950, Zonos. Zonos supports Cortana for those who want voice control. All three apps can be found in the Windows Store. If it would be necessary to add a Sonos-device I can still use the existing desktop controller. So in my opinion the fact that Sonos is not making a windows 10 uwp is annoying but nothing more than that. That said there are other reasons that refrain me from investing in new, more Sonos equipment but those are offtopic.
I control my Sonos System with:
The original Sonos controller, witch loses functionality with every opdate;
FTS controller on Windows 10 Mobile, witch does some functions. Not supported by Sonos;
8" Windows 10 tablet. My fingers are sometimes too big to press the right buttons on de desktop version;
22" Windows 10 desktop PC. I don't always sit at my desk.

So I would welcome the universal app.

the fact that Sonos is not making a windows 10 uwp is annoying but nothing more than that. That said there are other reasons that refrain me from investing in new, more Sonos equipment but those are offtopic.

Agree - it feels a bit second hand having to use 3rd party tools to control the system, good though Zonos & Phonos are. Using the Windows desktop controller on a touch-screen device like a Surface is really clunky and as someone else pointed out, it's next to impossible on a small tablet. But then reality bites - Windows share of the 8" tablet market might be ~15% so Sonos may well be right in prioritizing other developments. But then, if they could do a single app that would meet the needs of the minority of Windows Phone users, the millions of Xbox One users and the many millions of Windows 10 users, wouldn't that be desirable? Surely controlling the end-end user experience is where Apple showed the way, and yet by having 3rd party controllers be the only option, Sonos is giving away the last mile to Windows users.