Radio skipping backwards - BBC radio repeats


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Diagnostic 1334398637, occasionally the radio skips back and repeats a few seconds, the radio will later turn off.


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Hi all, apologies for the delay - I was waiting to check in with our senior engineers if there had been any changes.

No updates to share right now I’m afraid - we’re continuing to look in to this from our side.

At the present time, it looks like the MyTuner service is not affected/is the least affected by this issue, however we’re not completely sure what the situation between the BBC and MyTuner is currently - if you do decide to use MyTuner as a workaround for the time being, be aware that BBC stream availability through the service may change.

Thank you for your updates as well - seeing that the issue occurs using multiple Radio services, and when requested by both app and voice, (as well as the issue affecting non-Sonos devices) should help us get to the bottom of this.

As an update to my post the other day, I was speaking with the support team and:

  1. Installed the app again to generate diagnostics
  2. As part of that installed an update to my Sonos One.
  3. Changed my wireless channel on 2.4ghz to 6 (from 1)
  4. Initiated BBC Radio 2 via the Sonos app (not via my usual route of Ok Google)

….and for the last day or two I’ve had NO rewind/skipping (previously I would get maybe 8-10 skips over 6 hours airplay).

As so many actions were made, it’s hard to understand what could of been the thing that helped fix it but so far so good.  I’ll see if I can initiate a days worth of listening via Ok Google and see if there’s any change.

As an update to my post the other day, I was speaking with the support team and:

  1. Installed the app again to generate diagnostics
  2. As part of that installed an update to my Sonos One.
  3. Changed my wireless channel on 2.4ghz to 6 (from 1)
  4. Initiated BBC Radio 2 via the Sonos app (not via my usual route of Ok Google)

….and for the last day or two I’ve had NO rewind/skipping (previously I would get maybe 8-10 skips over 6 hours airplay).

As so many actions were made, it’s hard to understand what could of been the thing that helped fix it but so far so good.  I’ll see if I can initiate a days worth of listening via Ok Google and see if there’s any change.

Really interested to hear how this goes, this has been driving me mad for months...

I find that i can run bbc sounds on my phone then link the sound through to Sonos with no problems. It is infuriating that if I blunder into the kitchen and mutter ‘Alexa radio4’ it works and then starts to repeat. I worry that by the end of the day the on the hour news is running half a hour late! 

Actually it does appear that on testing via OK Google it did then have a few skips yesterday afternoon.

 

Still a problem, seems to be worse with recent updates

chris

 

On further testing it appears that the BBC Radio 2 stream is MUCH more reliable IF the radio is started from the app.

I’ve since reverted to kicking off the stream via the app and haven’t seen any skips for more than a day (10+ hours played)

I assume that the wireless channel means very little (as instructed via Sonos support) but both A) applying the latest firmware update to my Sonos One and 😎 initiating radio channel via the app and NOT my assistant (Google) fixes the issue for me.

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On further testing it appears that the BBC Radio 2 stream is MUCH more reliable IF the radio is started from the app.

I’ve since reverted to kicking off the stream via the app and haven’t seen any skips for more than a day (10+ hours played)

I assume that the wireless channel means very little (as instructed via Sonos support) but both A) applying the latest firmware update to my Sonos One and 😎 initiating radio channel via the app and NOT my assistant (Google) fixes the issue for me.

This is what I am experiencing. I am using MyTuner and starting through the app and not Alexa, it seems to be OK so far. So can Alexa also be the problem? I hope not as my wife will not use anything but Alexa. She refuses to use her phone just to change the radio station. She will throw Sonos in the bin!

Also, if i do use Alexa, it seems to remember and uses TuneIn not MyTuner. I have removed the TuneIn skill from Alexa, so I just don’t understand what is going on.

 

In my experience once I have initiated the radio station from the app, all is good.  No skips since my last update.  I can close down the app on the phone and just play/pause from the device and I’m good.

This doesn’t help I guess if you’re in a household that switches radio stations a lot and you’re keen to not use the app.

The assistants (I use Google’s) are very convenient of course but for my usage I can now get away without using it.

Hopefully our experience can help those at Sonos work out what the issue is so the function many paid for can be used fully.

Just to add to this - I have had this problem for some time, so would be interested in the outcome of any investigation and fix by Sonos.

 

@cwarrent which service are you using TuneIn?

 

Just to add - when I use Google Home to start the station it seems to default to TuneIn even when that service is not setup in Sonos.

 

Gav

Could it be that via the newly updated app and changes to services I’m now using Sonos Radio and not TuneIn to play Radio 2?

I know TuneIn is for sure used via Google assistant so if the app isn’t using TuneIn then this could narrow the issue.

@cwarrent and @neilandjan .

May I ask if you have the BBC Sounds Skill for Alexa installed? (Although I am not sure whether this is relevant!)

(I know nothing about Google Assistant - is there something comparable to the Alexa Skill?)

I’ve never used Alexa (as I preferred Google Assistant) but I get the feeling the issue arises using both assistants from replies within this post.

Thanks for reply - I edited my post while you were sending yours - is there anything from the BBC you can install on Google Assistant?

Could it be that via the newly updated app and changes to services I’m now using Sonos Radio and not TuneIn to play Radio 2?

I know TuneIn is for sure used via Google assistant so if the app isn’t using TuneIn then this could narrow the issue.

I thought that GA did NOT use TuneIn - what makes you say you are sure it does?

Edit - I mean not for BBC stations, at least.

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@cwarrent and @neilandjan .

May I ask if you have the BBC Sounds Skill for Alexa installed? (Although I am not sure whether this is relevant!)

(I know nothing about Google Assistant - is there something comparable to the Alexa Skill?)

Yes. I have the BBC Sounds skill installed in Alexa. 

N.B. I am still seeing NO repeats whilst starting playback via the Sonos app and not using Alexa, through MyTuner.

OK, some history.  (I hope my recollection is correct where it’s needed, but I won’t guarantee it.)

Back in August 2019, the BBC pulled its live stations from TuneIn.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/aboutthebbc/entries/37e4e3f6-fbd2-4c14-8d72-7f7139641582

The advice for Amazon Echo users was to access BBC stations via the BBC Sounds Skill for Alexa, for GA users to ‘use Chromecast or voice’.  I think GA already had something built in for BBC stations that was not TuneIn, and still does.

A concession was made for Sonos and similar systems, that they could continue to use TuneIn for BBC stations.  (In fact Sonos has never used the full TuneIn app - TuneIn just feeds Sonos the URL and then Sonos fetches the stream directly.)

At the time of the change, this meant the app could continue to play BBC stations via TuneIn and it still can.  There was no impact for GA users, as it wasn’t using TuneIn for BBC anyway.  For Alexa users (like me) it has meant using the BBC Sounds skill instead.  

So the upshot is, I think, that TuneIn is being used for requests from the Sonos app (and seems to have no repeat problems) and the voice systems are using something else, and are having repeat problems.  What is the something else?  In my case the ‘something else’ is BBC Sounds Skill for Alexa and it repeats.  What happens if you don’t have BBC Sounds but specify an alternative service to TuneIn in Alexa?  I don’t know, but it might be useful to know.

But key takeaway may be the app uses TuneIn by default and is fine (no repeats) .  Other radio consolidators also seem to be fine via the Sonos app.  Voice control goes by a different route, or maybe a few possible routes, and some or all of these are problematic.  

On Alexa, I think it will use BBC Sounds if it is installed, not sure about if it isn’t.  Using with BBC Sounds it repeats.

On GA I suspect it just uses GA built-in BBC thing in all circumstances (and that suffers repeats).

Even if correct, it doesn’t answer the question of whether this occurs only on voice control through Sonos or also on voice control of Echo devices and Google devices.  There doesn’t seem to be much out there on the internet about a general problem.  I have a feeling that somehow voice control via Sonos follows a different path and gets a different (faulty) stream from the BBC.  I doubt very much that it is a software error in Sonos.

I shall now reread the various posts on this thread and possibly find that they completely contradict this theory!

A summary of my experience so far:

  1. I noticed BBC radio skipping back, this has been happening for some time
  2. My standard setup was to use the TuneIn service on Sonos
  3. I use a Google Home Mini to start the radio - not always but most of the time
  4. If I use Google Home Mini “play Radio 2 in the office” for example, it will start and use TuneIn saying “BBC Radio 2 from TuneIn playing in Office”
  5. I have now removed the TuneIn service from Sonos, Google Home will still say  “BBC Radio 2 from TuneIn playing in Office” - and looking at Sonos I can see it is using TuneIn
    Sonos reports using TuneIn when started via Google Home
  6. In order to see if the stream via TuneIn skips but another service (e.g. myTuner) doesn’t I need to start radio only via the app (not Google Assistant) for a while - will report back then.

Regards,

Gavin

Might be tempting fate here but I’ve either resolved this issue or it’s been fixed anyway. For me I changed my Alexa settings/change music and podcasts default player from Spotify (where I’d previously had a 3 month trial which was downgraded to free) to Amazon. No issue since with the BBC radio jumping issue. No idea whether this fixed it, if it hadn’t then next thing I would have tried was an Alexa command ‘tell BBC sounds to play radio 2’ instead of ‘play radio 2’ and narrow down from there to work out which service Alexa is calling. Either way, I think just blaming Sonos is a bit lazy, they build amazing speakers, and opened up their previously locked down ecosystem to 3rd party own voice products re Amazon/Google voice control because the community wanted them to.

I only use the S1 app with Tunein and Radio 2 skips back circa 4 times a day. Only started about December and I don't think Sonos are particularly interested in fixing it. It's a shame as I have Sonos in every room and I don't think I could recommend it to friends anymore as it is really irritating. 

I only use the S1 app with Tunein and Radio 2 skips back circa 4 times a day. Only started about December and I don't think Sonos are particularly interested in fixing it. It's a shame as I have Sonos in every room and I don't think I could recommend it to friends anymore as it is really irritating. 

Can you confirm if this is using the app, not voice control, as you seem to suggest?  Your profile says you do have Alexa.

It is more or less inconceivable that this problem is caused by a Sonos software issue that Sonos can fix alone.

Hi John,

Thanks for the reply.

Although we do have Amazon Alexa in the house, I only ever use the Sonos (S1) App on my phone to start the radio / change station. The skipping backwards happened again this morning when listing to Matt Lucas on the Radio 2 breakfast show, I’ve never experienced the skipping on Radio 4 when listening to the Today breakfast programme but that is not to say that it doesn’t happen at other times. I’ve never had a problem with Classic FM.

 

Hi John,

Thanks for the reply.

Although we do have Amazon Alexa in the house, I only ever use the Sonos (S1) App on my phone to start the radio / change station. The skipping backwards happened again this morning when listing to Matt Lucas on the Radio 2 breakfast show, I’ve never experienced the skipping on Radio 4 when listening to the Today breakfast programme but that is not to say that it doesn’t happen at other times. I’ve never had a problem with Classic FM.

 

Thanks for info, although it muddies the picture further!  I have had the skipping backwards numerous times on Radio 4’s Today programme, but only when the stream is started using Alexa, not the app.

I am on S2 rather than S1, but it seems unlikely to me that those would differ in this regard.  

I think I am going to give up trying to pin down the common factors on this one!

One thing I think we are all agreed on is that this is a problem on BBC channels only.

Just to add to the confusing mix of backward skipping issues on BBC radio streams, here’s my experiences.

Using Alexa voice control I have experienced skipping when using Radio Player and the BBC Sounds app. This morning used the Sonos app to listen to BBC Radio 4 via Radio Player and a backward skip happened within the first minute. So in my case it’s happening with and without voice control!

Had this issue on Radio 4 for a few months - first time thought it was just a dodgy edit in a news item but it happened again and again.

Generally use Alexa to “play radio 4” on Sonos 1 - no idea what tech is making it happen.

however often get message about linking my Amazon account to bbc sounds and time wasting bbc sounds intro so after reading this thread realise playing via bbc sounds.

tried starting from the Sonos app using tunein and ok so far - have to see what happens when I next listen, perhaps starting with a tap or “Alexa play kitchen”
 

no idea who is at fault but would be really good if Amazon/bbc/Sonos could sort it out together for their customers.  A clear description of the process and tech involved would be a start.

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