Play sound / audio from device / phone / tablet / computer

  • 13 July 2013
  • 17 replies
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The Sonos speakers should be able to function like a bluetooth speaker bar (I would have paid more for built-in BT if necessary for it) to allow playing audio wirelessly from a phone, tablet, or computer. For example, if I'm watching Netflix or Hulu or a local video file or playing a game, the sound should transmit over WiFi (or BT if it can't be done with WiFi for latency reasons) to allow it to be heard on the speaker(s). I have a ~$40 portable speaker that can do this, so why can't this $500 speaker do it?? I like the Sonos speaker, but I'm regretting purchasing it and will not be buying any more, when I can get a whole lot more functionality out of other options. It can't do the one thing I bought it for.

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17 replies

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You could add an adapter like this to a Play:5, Connect, or Connect:amp to add bluetooth to your list of streaming inputs. This would then allow streaming of your bluetooth to all Sonos speakers in your house. http://tinyurl.com/nkhxhap
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There is also the option to connect an Airplay express to one of the above as well if you want to stream any audio from an Apple device.
While I qquestion why one would buy something which "can't do the one thing I bought it for" when it plainly never claimed to be able to do it, things may be looking up when it comes to this type of functionality:

http://gigaom.com/2013/10/14/sonos-releases-new-200-speaker-ceo-dismisses-spotifys-connect-speaker-p...

"So what’s next for Sonos? MacFarlane was vague when asked about new products, but he told me a bit about how the company plans to make its existing products better. Music services will soon be able to add functionality to their apps that will let users beam music directly to Sonos speakers. This means that users won’t need to fire up the Sonos app anymore to launch their favorite radio station or playlist from the cloud. Instead, they will be able to simply press a “play on Sonos” button within the app of their favorite service, and launch music playback on their Sonos system. Think of it like Chromecast, but for your music.MacFarlane told me that Sonos intends to make this functionality available on both iOS and Android. He wasn’t quite ready to share a timeline for the full launch of “play on Sonos,” but he revealed that Sonos quietly launched the feature in China earlier this year, where users of QQ’s audio streams can already make use of it. This means it’s only a question of time before it will also be available to users of western music services."
I think it is unforgivable that Sonos has not addressed this issue.  As User910388[/url] said, my $50 wireless speaker can do it, why can't an incredibly expensive Sonos system do this ?  I assumed "all the music on earth" included any music coming from my laptop, not just from my iTunes library.  Who would expect that you have to give up functionality with such an elegant system ? Very misleading and disappointing.
I am very disappointed by the lack of development Sonos in this area. I've been watching updates come and go; this is the only thing I care about. Nothing seems to be happening! Being unable play a youtube video on my phone through the speakers is absolutely unforgivable. After doing some research I realize I could use something called AirAudio on my android device, but this requires root access which more or less requires that I become a frickin' hacker to get up and running with.
See this thread for an excellent explanation by Majik why YouTube is not supported on Sonos, or any other audio only streaming device:

https://en.community.sonos.com/music-services-and-sources-228994/youtube-6731905
It seems to me that this option would be a no-brainer to add to the function of the SONOS devices. I purchased two Play1s and after trying them out and learning that they do no function with the ease I thought they would, I have returned them. I wanted them to be simple and just work, but after reading that I would have to set up an airport express just to get complete wireless playback from my devices, I found that solution to be too much of a bandaid solution. I was completely surprised that SONOS would even suggest this on their website. Why not include that as part of the package? With so many people disappointed in the forums, I don't understand why SONOS doesn't do a software update to allow for this increased versatility with their product. What is their to lose? Should SONOS decide to add this functionality to their devices, I will most definitely buy them again.
While I qquestion why one would buy something which "can't do the one thing I bought it for" when it plainly never claimed to be able to do it, things may be looking up when it comes to this type of functionality:

http://gigaom.com/2013/10/14/sonos-releases-new-200-speaker-ceo-dismisses-spotifys-connect-speaker-p...

"So what’s next for Sonos? MacFarlane was vague when asked about new products, but he told me a bit about how the company plans to make its existing products better. Music services will soon be able to add functionality to their apps that will let users beam music directly to Sonos speakers. This means that users won’t need to fire up the Sonos app anymore to launch their favorite radio station or playlist from the cloud. Instead, they will be able to simply press a “play on Sonos” button within the app of their favorite service, and launch music playback on their Sonos system. Think of it like Chromecast, but for your music.MacFarlane told me that Sonos intends to make this functionality available on both iOS and Android. He wasn’t quite ready to share a timeline for the full launch of “play on Sonos,” but he revealed that Sonos quietly launched the feature in China earlier this year, where users of QQ’s audio streams can already make use of it. This means it’s only a question of time before it will also be available to users of western music services."



I remember that article. IIRC Google Cast Music happened shortly afterwards, and was adopted widely (except by Apple, of course). If Sonos had this functionality in mind, I wonder why they haven't adopted Google Cast? Seems like it's become a widely accepted standard. Would be far easier than getting all the streaming providers to include yet another protocol. Would Apple throw a hissy fit if they did?
Yes you can - you simply need a service which picks up your computer speaker audio and pushes it out as a "radio" stream . Heres a link for a windows version

http://www.streamwhatyouhear.com/getting-started/
While I qquestion why one would buy something which "can't do the one thing I bought it for" when it plainly never claimed to be able to do it, things may be looking up when it comes to this type of functionality:

http://gigaom.com/2013/10/14/sonos-releases-new-200-speaker-ceo-dismisses-spotifys-connect-speaker-p...

"So what’s next for Sonos? MacFarlane was vague when asked about new products, but he told me a bit about how the company plans to make its existing products better. Music services will soon be able to add functionality to their apps that will let users beam music directly to Sonos speakers. This means that users won’t need to fire up the Sonos app anymore to launch their favorite radio station or playlist from the cloud. Instead, they will be able to simply press a “play on Sonos” button within the app of their favorite service, and launch music playback on their Sonos system. Think of it like Chromecast, but for your music.MacFarlane told me that Sonos intends to make this functionality available on both iOS and Android. He wasn’t quite ready to share a timeline for the full launch of “play on Sonos,” but he revealed that Sonos quietly launched the feature in China earlier this year, where users of QQ’s audio streams can already make use of it. This means it’s only a question of time before it will also be available to users of western music services."



I guess from this answer the OP shouldn't have bought a SONOS but rather should have bought a bluetooth speaker. I'm currently (three years layer) looking for this functionality so that I can stream audio from my favorite LIVE-LIVE-LIVE radio audio app directly to the speaker. Not to stream podcasts and other recorded audio.

As a consequence in the 10 months since was given the SONOS speaker I rarely turn it on. It is not mobile, It doesn't stream LIVE from my local radio station. It doesn't play audio wirelessly directly from my device output.

If it does I'm having trouble finding it.
I was given a sonos for my birthday as I expressed interest in it after hearing the decent sound somewhere. But how sonos is allowed to market these as speakers is a mystery to me. they are just a jukebox for your library and 3rd party streamers who made a deal with them. got around fixing it with airsonos for my mac and SWYH for my pc's but it still does not work for my iphone... and even then, it is a very cluncky and cumbersome patch. very disapointed...
Userlevel 7
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I was given a sonos for my birthday as I expressed interest in it after hearing the decent sound somewhere. But how sonos is allowed to market these as speakers is a mystery to me. they are just a jukebox for your library and 3rd party streamers who made a deal with them. got around fixing it with airsonos for my mac and SWYH for my pc's but it still does not work for my iphone... and even then, it is a very cluncky and cumbersome patch. very disapointed...

I sometimes wonder why Sonos don't have a required interview process to weed out unsuitable purchasers.

Quite how you've got the brass neck to have persuaded somebody to have spent the best part of a minimum £160 to £200 without even doing the bare minimum of research - what Sonos can and cannot do is easily discovered. And then claim that's Sonos' fault is actually beyond me.

Apparently what YOU want, and need, is a Bluetooth Mac speaker. Why didn't you ask for that for your birthday?
I think its a fair point to make. For all the things sonos can do I am surprised you simply cannot stream an audio signal from your device (iPhone, android) using the sonos app. regardless of the features listed, this does seem like a minimal request.

Sonos is purchased or the high quality sound and robust playback features. Having your devices stream audio what ever the source might be is not unreasonable request of the product/company.
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I don’t entirely disagree. What I take exception with is those who spend. Lot of money without doing the basic research first.

They are two different things
I'm here currently doing my research before purchasing... I want to connect an old turntable to an amp and tv and speakers so I'd be willing to by the Connect:amp, the sound bar, and some Play1s but this thread has killed it for me. I definitely think Sonos needs a way for people to stream any audio from a phone (or any obvious/typical device) into the system or it's a no deal ?
I too am disappointed with my Sonos speakers. I set them up in my bedroom and one of the things I wanted to do is play a meditation app from my iphone. Unfortunately this can't be done. It's a very limited product. Such a shame because the sound is good.
If you can wait a few months, Sonos will be releasing integration of AirPlay 2, which work to send a signal to a Sonos One, PLAY:5 Gen 2, PLAYBASE or BEAM, and hence can be grouped with any other Sonos speakers. Then you'll be able to send the meditation app from your phone to the Sonos, assuming the app can do AirPlay 2.

Of course, right now, you could connect the headphone jack from your iPhone to a Sonos device that has a line in, and play that. The PLAY:5 (both generations) and the pair of CONNECT devices have line in on them.