Question

Amazon Echo


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When will Sonos release the Amazon Echo app they have been talking about since August 2016???

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Sonos never gives exact release dates. They schedule according to testing goals met, not calendar dates reached. That said, the press release stated sometime in 2017.
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Here is my take on this situation... since we bought an echo last month, 99% of music played in the kitchen has been.. "Alexa, play XXX.." It used to be 100% Sonos. Even with the tiny speaker compared to the Sonos AMPs in the Kitchen.. its all Alexa. The Sonos app used to be ALWAYS open on the computer... now it is never even open. So Sonos.. figure this out real fast or the party is over.
I doubt it can ever be all Alexa....how well will she do in response to: Play XXX playlist. Or, skip to the next song...? Or...shuffle playlist?

Alexa is probably good enough for the basis command set, but the app use won't go away for some years, I reckon. That said, I think Sonos has got the message of moving faster.
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Here is my take on this situation... since we bought an echo last month, 99% of music played in the kitchen has been.. "Alexa, play XXX.." It used to be 100% Sonos. Even with the tiny speaker compared to the Sonos AMPs in the Kitchen.. its all Alexa. The Sonos app used to be ALWAYS open on the computer... now it is never even open. So Sonos.. figure this out real fast or the party is over.

I bought an echo with the Prime member discount wen they were released last year. I NEVER use it to listen to music or radio - everything is available on Sonos (actually MY music is on Sonos but not on Alexa) and the quality of the Dot for music is rubbish.
Our experience with Echo, Dot and Tap vs. Sonos is that the Amazon product is used much more now than Sonos. Sonos is the in-home equivalent of going to a concert. If we want so sit and really listen for a while, Sonos is used. For quick, background it is Amazon. Just ordered two Amazon Show units and am looking forward to hearing how they sound and gaining access to being able to glance at album art while listening. But if I could listen on Sonos as easily as on Amazon devices of course that would be the way to go.
Sonos forward thinking is definitely lacking when comes to voice command. Sonos need to develope their own voice command independent from amazon, google home and apple. I feel Sonos is being left behind FAST.
Left behind? By who?

And why would I want a different voice assistant for my music system than the one I use for the rest of my home? Why reinvent the wheel?
If Sonos can get its proprietary networking system to work smoothly with the echo, google home, or Alexa then great for all us but I believe these companies will eventually compete directly with Sonos with their own premium speakers. There's already a tiny microphone in the 2'nd gen play 5 ready to be activated. Sonos need to innovate and give what the customers want or they will become another Betamax.
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It has taken Google and Amazon years of development to get to where they are with their voice product and it still needs work. Microsoft and Apple have also spent similar time and money and their products are way behind still.

For Sonos to do the same would be commercial madness so they have done the best thing and teamed up with the Market leader, and they seem to be the only speaker manufacturer who have actually confirmed Alexa is coming this year so why berate them? I'm sure it's their top priority and it will be ready when it works well enough to release to the public, like any other new feature.
The current microphone in the Play:5 is not the far field array needed for voice control. It's also been intimated by the Sonos CEO that future Sonos devices will have built-in mic arrays and embedded Alexa functions, eliminatin the need for a secondary device.
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Even if Amazon, Echo or others wanted to get into the premium speaker market (which there is no evidence they do) and compete with Sonos, it doesn't make sense for Sonos to develop their own voice control system. Is that going to make a customer chose a Sonos speaker(s) over the hypothetical Amazon speaker? I wouldn't think so, as people will want all the extra features that Echo provides with Voice control. It would be nuts for Sonos to try and compete with that.

Nah, partnering with Amazon (and probably the rest eventually) makes much more sense. As others have pointed out, they already seem to be in the lead regarding that.
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With the introduction of the HomePod from Apple, it would seem pertinent for Sonos to get on with this.
I would suspect that Sonos hasn't been sucking their thumbs since the announcement. I imagine it's a fairly complex issue, and we'll see the results of it as soon as they're able to bring it to us.
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I suggested Sonos team up with Alexa the day they came out. It's been a few years since then and it still hasn't happened and I don't think it will. They can tease us with nebulous timelines and vague promises but I'm not going to pay attention to any of that.

Either do it or don't do it.
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Having a bad day Steve? What with this and your Audible rant ;)

Of course they are working on both, they have said that and whilst Sonos may be a bit reticent with their sharing of timescales I don't think they can be accused of lying, they don't have a history of that. What they have admitted is that they were caught napping on the whole Voice control thing. The new CEO admitted that and also committed to catching up, which is what I assume they are doing now. I don't see any other choice yet in the market other than Amazon and Googles own speakers. As for Audible I suspect this is tied in with the Alexa project, it would make sense as both are Amazon companies, but of course it means audible is held up.

I am frustrated, i would love to see Alexa working with Sonos, i have enough of both companies kit to have voice control all over the house. But criticism over lack of firm dates is harsh as that is standard in Software engineering, especially when new technology is involved. Better that than dates announced which then move every few months.
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Of course they are working on both, they have said that and whilst Sonos may be a bit reticent with their sharing of timescales I don't think they can be accused of lying, they don't have a history of that. What they have admitted is that they were caught napping on the whole Voice control thing. The new CEO admitted that and also committed to catching up, which is what I assume they are doing now. I don't see any other choice yet in the market other than Amazon and Googles own speakers.

I'll sound like an apologist here, but I'm not faulting Sonos too much for lacking foresight on the voice control front. Let's be realistic here, basically everybody missed the boat, and when the Echo surprised Amazon/everybody with the scale of its success that all changed. The world's largest company got caught flat footed after all.

On the second part, you are correct. It's insane for anyone the size of Sonos to try and compete in this space now. Amazon, Google, and Apple are in their wheelhouse with a headstart. The only thing that would send me into a tizzy is if Sonos actually tried to compete instead of integrating, which I've heard nothing of the sort from them.


I am frustrated, i would love to see Alexa working with Sonos, i have enough of both companies kit to have voice control all over the house. But criticism over lack of firm dates is harsh as that is standard in Software engineering, especially when new technology is involved. Better that than dates announced which then move every few months.Agreed. Every day I open the Sonos app I wish I could've just spoken to my Echo, but it is what it is. Personally, I'd just as soon have a limited functionality release with more to come later, but there are a lot of customers who can't deal with that sort of iteration. They want it all, and they want it now. You're better off making them wait so they end up happy in the end.
Why don't those with a burning hurry for voice and a Sonos unit with a line in jack start the ball rolling with a Dot wired to the line in? Will that not do all that the integration will do wirelessly? All you have to junk later is the wire because the Dot will still be needed and used?
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I'd agree that Sonos really isn't that behind on voice integration. The could have integrated sooner, but there is no reason to forsee it would be this big. If it was the obvious, google and apple wouldn't have gotten there late.

And I am also glad that Sonos didn't try and do it all themselves. That would have surely failed.

As far as using the line in with Dot as a temporary integration, it's far from ideal. I have a spare connect I tested that out with in my living room. This is also the room I have the tv and playbar setup. So in order for me to use this, I have to group the CONNECT zone with the PLAYBAR zone to hear it. If the tv is on (with audio), then I can't use my Dot because it the current source on the PLAYBAR. So I essentially would need to plug and unplug the dot /connect whenever I switch between tv and music. I suppose I could do the setup in my bedroom where there is no tv watching, but that's about 70% useful since I'm mostly out in the living room. As well, I run into problems when I group the bedrooms with other rooms...dot is rendered useless again.
I'm really exited about this feature since I bought my sonos speakers just to use them with alexa
Why don't those with a burning hurry for voice and a Sonos unit with a line in jack start the ball rolling with a Dot wired to the line in? Will that not do all that the integration will do wirelessly? All you have to junk later is the wire because the Dot will still be needed and used?

No, since I can't use the dot to control playback of my personal music. It might work for streaming sources, though.
I see your point; but it should do all else that Echo/Dot can do today? And even so there is little point in throwing a hissy fit over the time Sonos is taking and jumping over to the Echo?

Has Apple said this can be done via their offering when it will be available which should be well after the Sonos release?
Well, generally speaking, I agree, and I'm not throwing any hissy fit, since Sonos said 2017, and we're not even half way through that time period.

Sometimes I connect a Dot to my Play;5, although more frequently it's connected to a laptop, so I can listen to TuneIn premium content.

As for Apple's offering, there's just not enough information available for my tastes yet. Which I understand, but until I can get a few questions answered, I'm not jumping on that bandwagon as a replacement for Sonos. And, even if I had those answers, it's a slim bet that I'd be getting rid of my Sonos equipment. It works perfectly now, even without voice commands, so while I like the icing that voice will bring, it doesn't change the content of the cake.
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Using Alexa with squeezebox system devices is already an (alpha) reality - it works well,

But it isn't the holy grail of device control that many seem to hope/believe it will be.

It works fine for distributed devices not in the 'listening' area of an echo/dot where the echo can easily 'respond' to any music lyrics it picks up*. It can become tiresome to have to repeat 'Alexa, ask SB to do whatever' for every action, eg. select a device, set volume, choose a stream, play, etc.

Fun, definitely. Useful, yes with reservations

* I'm definitely interested in how Sonos handle the ambient 'noise factor!
Ok castalla, we get it. You like Squeezebox. May I remind you of this forum's TOS? Spam is not permitted, and I dare say if Squeezebox was actually a viable commercial product, instead of a failed one kept alive by geeks in their basement, your posts shilling for them would be deleted by now. Let's move this thread back on topic, not to mention back within the TOS of this forum, shall we?

As far as using the line in with Dot as a temporary integration, it's far from ideal.

Quite understandable, but it would be a useful preview for a small investment to quell the anxiety that people seem to have for laying their hands on the Sonos release; and it is cheaper than buying another Echo.

It would also give users an insight into how the integration is a lot more complex than just having the existing Amazon voice application connect to a Sonos speaker without a wire or a line in jack.

The more I read about these complexities, the more I realise that voice will be a huge learning curve and it is best to wait till it matures before bringing audible chaos in the home audio system command and control environment.

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