Sonos should offer a BBC iPlayer Radio App in the controller

  • 25 September 2014
  • 297 replies

Userlevel 4
Badge +1
A lot of people have been asking for BBC iPlayer Radio. Since Sonos only appear to respond to new posts I have decided to suggest this again. 
None of the responses from Sonos on this is issue so far have been satisfactory. These have included:
- Apple Licensing. This is irrelevant and probably indicates that Sonos don't actually know what iPlayer Radio is.
- Use Apple AirPlay. No. I am not going to go and spend a load more money on some other system because the one I bought off you doesn't do what it is meant to do.
- Plug a separate source into a Sonos amp or speaker. No. This is meant to be a wireless system so I am not going plug a wire into it to make it work. Further, the system is meant to work from one control panel. That's one of the features. So I don't want to have to work it through two control panels.

What people want to know is if Sonos HAVE ANY PLANS TO PROVIDE iPlayer or is it just OFF THE TABLE? 

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297 replies

Userlevel 3
Seconded. (Thirded?) When I first got my Sonos I was gutted to find out you can't access iplayer directly. I'd researched, and was led to believe I could access BBC archive programs, but the Tune-in service is pretty much useless. The interface is terrible, and much of the time it just does not work. A couple of years on and I'm getting seriously hacked off with my system, to the point where I'm considering ditching it in favour of a system that's not so restrictive. I absolutely love the hardware, but the controller is just an almighty pain, the interface is dire. There are better and easier to use apps for pretty much all of the music services I access through the Sonos controller (iplayer, Spotify's own app...) so WHY do Sonos insist on dragging everything through their own lumpy interface? In addition, I'd say the Sonos app has actually got worse with the latest release.
Userlevel 2
I completely agree. BBC iPlayer is excellent and I bought Sonos so I could listen to anything wirelessly.
I'm also finding that Spotify doesn't add new playlists as easily as it should. I've had to remove and reload Spotify a few times already. Come on Sonos - sort it out!
Userlevel 2
How is this issue still open? Clearly there is a huge demand for this service
Userlevel 7
Badge +17
add me also.  BBC shows and programs on Tune-in are very much behind (or totally lacking) what is available in iplayer directly.  I should point out to sonos, this has NOTHING to do with Apple - just because it starts with an 'i', dont think you shouldnt touch it !

BBC Iplayer has been integrated into other systems in the past e.g. Squeezebox so it should be possible with Sonos also to add it as a separate service rather than part of Tune-in where its very much a half baked effort.
Userlevel 2
I'll add my voice to this. Have been using the system for over 5 years and the BBC stuff is really flaky and listen again is REALLY IMPORTANT to me!
Userlevel 3
I would have to agree with your decision. Had I known before buying how restrictive the Sonos controller services are, and specifically how useless and irritating TuneIn is, I would not have bought into Sonos. In fact I recently advised a friend against, and steered them towards a Denon network music system instead. 
It's so frustrating, because the hardware is GOOD. As part of my setup I have a Bridge connected to my main Linn system, and it sounds so much better than it used to with a Mac plugged straight in to the stereo (better DAC). However, the software really takes the shine off.
Userlevel 2
Agreed and noted. This is a feature I want / need. I was about to spend a lot of money on a new system on the assumption that BBC iPlayer would be available wirelessly. I don't want "workarounds". I want what is a good product to satisfy a need that I and many many others have - which it does not That it does not has made me reach a decision NOT to purchase.

Come on Sonos. This has been a debate for a number of years. Jostle as that it is NOT on your agenda

I am a disappointed potential customer

Userlevel 1
Totally agree.  I have two pair of Sonos 1s, but if I cannot get BBC Radio iPlayer to work I am seriously considering ditching Sonos for something more user friendly.  When it works, it's good but items seem to be on the menu one day, then there is an update and they're gone.  I was considering my next upgrade to be a PlayBar but I'm not so sure now.  Some menu items are only available on PC but not on iPad/iPhone.
Userlevel 2
Sure. Eleven Likes and 3 Post. That's a real huge demand.


Haha, OK there are multiple threads on this subject dating back over 2 years. His request keeps being asked a rejected for unknown reasons.
Userlevel 3
I have to agree with all of the above. After spending nearly £2k on a speaker system I have just found out that my partner walks around the house with an iPhone connected  to a Bose mini Bluetooth speaker instead of using the Sonos.

Apparently (and I have to agree) its much easier to control Spotify, Qobuz and BBC iPlayer with the native apps.

Sonos should just ditch their app and let third party apps connect and play direct.

Either that or just sort it out.
Userlevel 1
TuneIn has always been inadequate as means of listening to archived BBC radio programmes and is now, as others have said, entirely useless. (All Radio 3 content apart from the live stream has been inaccessible on Sonos for many months; now no BBC material of any kind, apart from a few podcasts, seems to be available.) This is deeply frustrating for the many Sonos users in the UK and elsewhere for whom BBC radio is an essential everyday resource, and who naturally resent being obliged to plug an external device into what was sold to them as a comprehensive and self-contained system. Sonos is an excellent product and I'm still glad to have made the investment, but it would be marvellous to be told that something was at last being done to remedy the BBC radio problem.
Userlevel 1
I use my SONOS system to listen to SPOTIFY and Radio.  The lack of BBC I Player radio is a serious deficiency in the SONOS supported Services.  SONOS please work with the BBC to get BBC I Player radio working as a SONOS service.  The BBC I Player app allows you to play radio programs for up to 30 days after broadcast and would fit well with the SONOS system.  I do not wish to use a  work around of a line-in from another device, I want the integrated streaming direct via the SONOS app. SONOS Help.
Userlevel 7
Badge +11
For non-UK listeners to BBC the iPlayer Radio support might not be the solution ... as this is currently restricted to UK.
I hope that Sonos' native HLS support overcomes/sidesteps that limitation.
As a UK based BBC licence payer I do not object to the current UK restriction!
My new Sonos 5 (gen2) arrived a few days ago only to find out that it can't play BBCiPlayer......Taking that I have no stored music and bought it solely for BBCiPlayer, I'm absolutely pig-sick !! I would never have bought it if I knew it didn't have the capability to do so. I feel as if I have just thrown £429 down the pan !!!! Have brought my wee holiday bluetooth speaker back out of the cupboard. My Sonos 5 is now a small coffee table... Come on Sonos, get yer finger out. I will not buy another Sonos product until something is done about it. Another extremely DISAPPOINTED customer...
Userlevel 1
Sure. Eleven Likes and 3 Post. That's a real huge demand.

BBC Iplayer radio went global in mid 2016 which means they have sorted out any licensing concerns. Sonos is at the end of the day a speaker system. There doesn't seem to be any reason why if iplayer is global that it cannot cast to Sonos. I have made this point to bbc iplayer via their twitter feed and their direct email and hope they can update at some point.

Correct, there should be no reason. Sonos offers for free to any service a Music Partners integration package for inclusion in the Sonos app (, and they have recently released a new API which allows control of Sonos speakers from third party apps (

However, in the case of the first, Sonos cannot unilaterally add BBC content access to the Sonos app, they need the cooperation of the BBC or they are usurping licensing laws. For the second, they have no access to the BBC app, so there is no way they can implement it there even if they wished to usurp licensing laws.

In other words, Sonos support for the BBC lies in the hands of the BBC.
Userlevel 1
BBC Podcasts please
I'm just giving my support for adding BBC iPlayer to the Sonos app. I've recently joined the 'family' with a Play 5 and Play 1. They are working seamlessly in our house but I've had to connect an old iphone 4 to the Play 5 to receive iplayer. This does work quite well but seems to me a tad unnecessary and i would love to have integration with the Sonos app.
Please do listen to our UK requests, Sonos, and make your app less blinkered and restrictive.
Many thanks,
Janet Elwin
ok, this thread has even more replies than the other one, so let me beg here as well:

Now that you have done the Apple Music integration, can you focus on doing the BBC iPlayer? Pleeeaaase! I finally want to stop listening to the iPlayer app via headphones from my iPhone whilst cooking having a perfectly fine Sonos system sitting there unused.
Userlevel 1
I have also been waiting for SONOS to support BBC Iplayer Radio. SONOS keep telling me that it does provide access to the BBC radio streams via Radio by Tuneln, which works well for live radio streams. However, what Tuneln does not do well is provide access to BBC Radio play it again and podcasts. Tuneln is very hit amd miss about supporting BBC Radio podcasts and very slow in getting play it again BBC Radio programs loaded if they get them at all. This could easily be solved by SONOS by supporting BBC Iplayer in the SONOS App. I suggest SONOS listen to the large number of very annoyed BBC Iplayer users who also have SONOS systems and get it integrated in the SONOS App. As a simple workaround I am using a Google Chromecast Audio plugged into my line-in port and then cast the BBC Iplayer program to SONOS. It works better than a bluetooth device on the line-in port. However, SONOS, please listen to your UK users and get BBC Iplayer radio integrated into your SONOS app. Thanks.
Userlevel 7
Badge +17
Hopefully one day google casting will be able to cast to sonos from native apps like iplayer. not just the one GPM android app. Seeing as google has sold 55million of these little chromecast devices, it would make sonos more attractive to households that already have them.
Userlevel 2
Yes of late is has moved from "unreliable" to "not working", but since Sonos clearly don't seem to have any interest in supporting BBC streams properly (for whatever reason) I am unsurprised to find no solution forthcoming...
Hi all. I've just received the following update from Sonos Technical Support. Thought you might be interested... "We are aware that some of BBC's podcasts doesn't play via Sonos - Our radio partner TuneIn has identified the problem with BBC and they are working together towards a solution. At this moment we don't have any information about when it will be solved, but as soon as we do we will provide you with an update."
+1 for all the comments in this thread. TuneIn needs fixing to provide a stable service but I would really like to see native support for bbc services in the sonos app.
Can I add another plea for BBC iPlayer integration with SONOS systems? It's such a big gap in the UK market and means I won't be expanding my set up any further.
SONOS - can you break your silence and give us a statement on iPlayer please?
Userlevel 1
I spent weeks/months last year, to-ing and fro-ing with Sonos support trying to decipher what was causing my ageing Sonos kit to hang (and need a reboot).
I’d explained all along that I thought it was connected with BBC radio streams and Tunein. They were having “none of it”.
I gave up trying to diagnose in the end.

Interestingly other radio stations (non-BBC) seem to stream very well and without any lock-ups.

I’ve had my sonos kit for years, probably about 8 or 9 now. This never used to happen with BBC stations.

I think the BBC’s migration to a new steaming platform, plus Tunein’s uselessness keeps us where we are today.

Pretty sure in the old days, Sonos used a different streaming partner to serve all their stuff. Can’t remember what it was... but it was always reliable.

Can’t believe this fiasco is still ongoing.

I dip into these BBC channel posts post every now and then to see if there is any change with BBC support on Sonos. For me I don't really care if it is TuneIn, BBC or Sonos that has a problem. I don't care if it's a technical issue brought about by changing transmission support. And I really don't care about who said what when and proof etc. I bought a system from Sonos in good faith. I was told at point of sale, a Sonos concession in John Lewis, that 'Yes, BBC channels were fully supported' (among other questions that I asked and also received positive responses. Therefore my contract of sale (and support) is with Sonos (not TuneIn, not the BBC). I also contacted Sonos directly and they directed me to this and other posts to 'watch for the answer'. So for me it's quite simple, BBC channels on Sonos don't work well, they need fixing, so is it going to be fixed or not? If not then Sonos should tell us. If it is then Sonos should tell us what the time line is for implementation. It's not rocket science it's a simple question and just requires a simple answer. Last I read from a Sonos employee was that Sonos were looking at this last year, this year - I forget - but Sonos, having looked and investigated then there must be a definitive answer, so where is it? And what is it?