Anyone move from Google Assistant to Alexa on Sonos?

  • 24 November 2022
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Google assistant doesn’t work very well on my Sonos ARC (not very responsive and most of the time there is no answer).  A friend of mine said the same thing and then he moved to Alexa and said it worked much better.  Google works a lot better on my dedicated Google Home.  I guess the bonus of using Alexa is that you can also use the Sonos voice assistant at the same time.

Not sure I want the hassle but has anyone experienced that Alexa integration on Sonos is much better?


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Hi @Gubes 

Thanks for your post!

I personally started with Google Assistant on a Sonos One at home - basically because I had been an Android user for years and had never owned an Echo. My main use for voice control in the kitchen was to replace my unreliable oven timer. However, with GA I repeatedly had to spend so long asking for a timer that I eventually had to start reducing the amount of time I was asking for! Anecdotally, I do remember from my telephone agent days a small number of male customers saying that their wives were understood by GA, but that they were not.

Switching to Alexa instead give me an immediate improvement - she generally understands exactly what I’m saying, even over music or noise. It’s not 100%, but then neither is speaking to humans.

Having said all this, I generally advise people to pick a favoured streaming service, and then base the choice of voice assistant on that - you can’t add YouTube Music to Alexa, and you can’t add Amazon Music to Google Assistant. Spotify can be added to both, thankfully. Having a voice assistant that can understand you is definitely something that could override this concern, however.

Having Sonos Voice Control available is very handy - especially if you like your music to follow you around, rather than be played everywhere at once. “Hey Sonos, include this room” and it’s grouped-in. We will be adding more music services to SVC in time.

I hope you find this useful.

@Gubes,

Yes I did have a few Google Assistant products before they became known as ‘nest’ devices and had a few of what they now call nest hub mini’s, nest display, Chromecast etc. and their assistant was also available on two televisions here - I thought it was okay, but not perfect by any means and I was always keeping my Google Home App tidy and really wondered why their Assistant and Home Apps were not merged into one App?

Anyhow, long-story-short, I found my Hue lights, security cameras, Hive heating and of course Sonos speakers all worked far better with Alexa. I purchased a 2nd generation echo dot, which worked really well and over time Alexa has now taken over many parts of our Home.

I now use Alexa alongside SVC on Sonos and they work fantastic together and far outstrip the abilities of the Google assistant. I’ve even switched to using the Amazon Music HD and Prime Movie services.

I’m not one for having my eggs all in one basket, but Amazon voice services have my vote. I think the Google assistant has fallen behind - I think Google have become somewhat isolated and inward-looking, a bit like Apple, to some degree. Yes, I love my iPad & iPhone, but Siri seems to be dead on its feet and the Home(Kit) App is sadly lacking in my book.

There’s perhaps no perfect answer, but Alexa, alongside SVC, are certainly at the front of the pack for our (now smarter) Home. Alexa voice recognition is just so much smarter than Google’s and the choice of ‘Skills’ now available to integrate with other online services and hardware is truly ‘remarkable’.

I’ve since given away most of my Google devices mentioned to other family members (it seems they use them less than I did, truth be told) - I really can’t see me returning to using the Google assistant, unless things start to greatly improve from their side and they allow their service to work better with Sonos, Hue lighting, TV’s etc.

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Thanks for the responses everyone.  I might give Alexa on Sonos a go.

@Gubes,

Yes I did have a few Google Assistant products before they became known as ‘nest’ devices and had a few of what they now call nest hub mini’s, nest display, Chromecast etc. and their assistant was also available on two televisions here - I thought it was okay, but not perfect by any means and I was always keeping my Google Home App tidy and really wondered why their Assistant and Home Apps were not merged into one App?

Anyhow, long-story-short, I found my Hue lights, security cameras, Hive heating and of course Sonos speakers all worked far better with Alexa. I purchased a 2nd generation echo dot, which worked really well and over time Alexa has now taken over many parts of our Home.

I now use Alexa alongside SVC on Sonos and they work fantastic together and far outstrip the abilities of the Google assistant. I’ve even switched to using the Amazon Music HD and Prime Movie services.

I’m not one for having my eggs all in one basket, but Amazon voice services have my vote. I think the Google assistant has fallen behind - I think Google have become somewhat isolated and inward-looking, a bit like Apple, to some degree. Yes, I love my iPad & iPhone, but Siri seems to be dead on its feet and the Home(Kit) App is sadly lacking in my book.

There’s perhaps no perfect answer, but Alexa, alongside SVC, are certainly at the front of the pack for our (now smarter) Home. Alexa voice recognition is just so much smarter than Google’s and the choice of ‘Skills’ now available to integrate with other online services and hardware is truly ‘remarkable’.

I’ve since given away most of my Google devices mentioned to other family members (it seems they use them less than I did, truth be told) - I really can’t see me returning to using the Google assistant, unless things start to greatly improve from their side and they allow their service to work better with Sonos, Hue lighting, TV’s etc.

 

Did this ever get resolved? To be able to use both as required via Voice? 

 

 

They have access to client modules of both, but are switching passing on the inputs to G or A based on App switching. 

Instead of switching using an OR flag based on an App Switch, maybe they do an AND and pass input to Both and see who, or if any one of them responds affirmative recognition and use the one whose name was called based on their response. 

Not very difficult to do. 

Did this ever get resolved? To be able to use both as required via Voice? 

 

 

They have access to client modules of both, but are switching passing on the inputs to G or A based on App switching. 

Instead of switching using an OR flag based on an App Switch, maybe they do an AND and pass input to Both and see who, or if any one of them responds affirmative recognition and use the one whose name was called based on their response. 

Not very difficult to do. 

I agree, it’s not difficult to do and that’s proven, in that we now see Alexa & SVC on the Sonos platform happily operating side-by-side.

I’m left with the impression that Google just didn’t want to join in and share their services with the others.

It’s another reason why I switched away from the Google assistant service and went with Amazon Alexa instead. Its right that we (the customer) have a choice with these things and are able to select the voice service that best suits our needs, so it’s a little sad that Google chose to not take part in operating side-by-side with their ‘partners’ (or so it seems)🤔?

If I’m not mistaken, Google has a legal clause that they enforce that when they are the voice assistant, there can be no others at the same time.