Airplay 2 Support



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As far as I can tell, the whole thing is still under development, so we don’t know whether or not you would be required to have one newer device to get the signal in to the Sonos ecosystem in some way, or whether all devices have the necessary WiFi cards that will accept the signal. Rather than jumping to conclusions, which we all tend to do, why don’t we wait for development to finish, and Sonos to announce how it works? I’m certain they would be doing everything possible to make it work with as many devices as possible.
It seems Sonos has said the entire current range and even older models will work with Airplay 2. I'd google around on that to see the sources.
It seems Sonos has said the entire current range and even older models will work with Airplay 2. I'd google around on that to see the sources. Let's hope so. I just ordered another Play:1 Would be a shame if it is only supported on the newer devices.
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I am going to assume if you have one Sonos device hat is capable you can group any other Sonos unit to that one to get the signal. Ie if you have a play:5 gen2 you can play from iOS tonthat speaker then group in any other speakers you want to play the same music. But you have to have the play:5 playing that stream. Kind of like with playbar you can play tv sound to any speaker in the house as long as the playbar is playing tv.

The make or break element of this chris will be whether you have to leave the airplay controller on your iOS device to do the grouping. If you airplay from iOS then group in SONOS app, it’s a very poor user experience. If however one device acts as the hub for all other speakers, perfect.

We live in hope...


I am not sure but what I understood from Apple side it is that Airplay2 on iOS will have the same functionalities than Airplay from iTunes application on your Mac. Which means you ould group different speakers.

Now if iOS will let you do that from your iPhone and use directly for instance iOS Apple Music application, then there will be no need anymore of Sonos app. An end that I am not sure Sonos will agree with.
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Reading http://iphone.appleinsider.com/articles/17/06/06/airplay-2-on-existing-speakers-requires-firmware-update-raising-questions-for-apples-airport-express

It seems that Airplay2 will need a firmware update or new hardware to get a full compatibility. Also, regarding the speaker manufacturer, some will provide an update others won't.
The question now is where Sonos will stand?
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"Unlike the original AirPlay, AirPlay 2 doesn't require special hardware anymore, but is entirely software-based, which allows for companies like Sonos to add support to their devices after the fact."

https://www.theverge.com/2017/10/4/16418944/sonos-airplay-2-support-apple-ios-siri-2018
Special hardware means something quite different from a minimum hardware requirement. It just may be that the Apple requirements are such that the processors in the older Sonos devices cannot keep up.
Additionally, there could be some sort of memory constraint on older hardware. Sonos might not be able to add the necessary code to older devices that could interpret the airplay 2 signal. I've no idea how tight they are, but it's a possibility that their memory is maxed out already, with all the other changes to the Sonos controller and music sources.
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Wto the original poster: it seems it’s scenario (ii) since, apparently it’s settled that AirPlay 2 is only for the newer touch control products: One, Play:5 (2nd Gen) and Playbase.

The remainder old products can be coupled with these new ones, but that means they will not be independently available as AirPlay speakers not available on the Home app.

Even the Airport Express from 2012 seems to be supported (judging from the reports on the latest iOS Betas), so it would be interesting to know if it’s actually a technical limitation or just a strategic decision by Sonos.

https://www.theverge.com/circuitbreaker/2018/4/25/17283114/sonos-apple-airplay-2-support-details#comments
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Yes, it looks like devices that Sonos still currently sell such as PlayBar and Play:1 & Play:3 won't get Airplay 2.
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If that is the case. They should come out with a unit that you can add to a group so airplay2 can find the connect connect amp and play1 and play3. Since they said groups with at least one sonos one will make that group airplay2 compatible. Seem like they have the tech already. Just take the brains of the Sonos one and package it as as hub for airplay2 amazon and Google assistance.
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In the recent blog post by Sonos (https://blog.sonos.com/en/airplay2-coming/) they say that

Today, we’re confirming that newer Sonos speakers like Play:5, Playbase and Sonos One will support AirPlay 2, as will future Sonos products. When you group one of these Airplay-enabled speakers with older Sonos devices, you can bring AirPlay capabilities to your entire Sonos system.


From the way this is written, it seems like that you have to start by casting AirPlay 2 content to one of the newer speakers, then group with an old one. I was hoping they would do this a bit more automagically by having internal logic that said that "ok, the user selected this old play:3, so I will silently start the stream on this new Play:One speaker and forward it to this old one" or whatever. Of course, this could still be how it works out, but from the description it seems to be more... manual.
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It sound like if you have the 5.1 setup with either the Sonos ones or the playbase. That whole group will play the airplay data once you pick that on iOS or Mac. No need to group after casting
If that is the case. They should come out with a unit that you can add to a group so airplay2 can find the connect connect amp and play1 and play3. Since they said groups with at least one sonos one will make that group airplay2 compatible. Seem like they have the tech already. Just take the brains of the Sonos one and package it as as hub for airplay2 amazon and Google assistance.
... Or just buy a Sonos ONE.


From the way this is written, it seems like that you have to start by casting AirPlay 2 content to one of the newer speakers, then group with an old one. I was hoping they would do this a bit more automagically by having internal logic that said that "ok, the user selected this old play:3, so I will silently start the stream on this new Play:One speaker and forward it to this old one" or whatever. Of course, this could still be how it works out, but from the description it seems to be more... manual.
This would indeed be magically.
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Trying to work stuff out from various different threads here :D

Reading through this one, I think if I was sat in a room that didn't have an AP2 compatible speaker in it and I had to first send the stream to where the Sonos One is, then group the Sonos One with the speakers where I'm sat, then remove the Sonos One from that group, frankly I think I'll pass on the whole topic (which will save me money anyway by not buying the Sonos One in the first place).

There are two reasons for this. Firstly I find the whole method of moving music from one room to another by grouping / ungrouping to be very clunky as it is. Would be nice to be told I'm doing this wrong!! Secondly, if someone was in the room where the Sonos One is it would like scare the living cr*p out of them at best, at worst, interrupt what they might be doing (watching TV, having a conversation with someone etc.). Not a good idea.

So I'm still hoping a lot of it is transparent. Clearly I guess Sonos are not going to go into this level of detail yet which is a shame because I already missed the "2 for £300" promotion because I'm not prepared to buy something based on assumptions. It would be nice if either that offer reappears when AP2 comes out or a similar discount on 1 unit for a brief period. We can hope I guess.
No need to group, then ungroup to pass music room to room. Press Group on the source room or group, deselect non-destination room(s), select destination room(s), press Done. Easy peasy.
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@jgatie - thanks for that info. I will check it out in the Sonos app later. It doesn't surprise me if I'm doing things in an overcomplicated manner. I don't think I've ever read any documentation or anything, I've only ever just prodded about until it worked.

Ironically, I'm not in the app right now because I'm listening to Apple Music over Airplay 1 to my pair of Gen 1 Play5's. I'd used AirConnect in the past but don't remember why I didn't stick with it. Most likely it was a stuttering mess? Not so this time however, I just put it on one of the VMs running in the background on my server and it's working like a charm. If it continues to then to be honest the hole AirPlay2 subject will become irrelevent to me since I don't really want it for the audio from video or anything, just music.
@jgatie - thanks for that info. I will check it out in the Sonos app later. It doesn't surprise me if I'm doing things in an overcomplicated manner. I don't think I've ever read any documentation or anything, I've only ever just prodded about until it worked.

Ironically, I'm not in the app right now because I'm listening to Apple Music over Airplay 1 to my pair of Gen 1 Play5's. I'd used AirConnect in the past but don't remember why I didn't stick with it. Most likely it was a stuttering mess? Not so this time however, I just put it on one of the VMs running in the background on my server and it's working like a charm. If it continues to then to be honest the hole AirPlay2 subject will become irrelevent to me since I don't really want it for the audio from video or anything, just music.


I use AirSonos which is a node.js package which bridges AirPlay and Sonos - it runs on my Raspberry Pi home automation server and works flawlessly - it's been running without issue for a couple of months now and offers exactly what Sonos should have offered years ago.

I remember using some variant of this when I first got my Sonos:1's (few years ago) and it didn't work properly, if at all, and from memory it was something to do with one of the audio CODECs which AirPlay uses not being supported.

It's disappointing to hear my three Play:1's and Connect:Amp won't get native AirPlay2 support but hey-ho, I've got a workaround which suits me fine.

I can't see it being too long until an AirPlay2 variant of something similar comes along - isn't AirPlay2 meant to be more "open" to aid wider adoption? Even if that's not the case, it won't take the geeks long to reverse-engineer the protocol and get it into a package.
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If that is the case. They should come out with a unit that you can add to a group so airplay2 can find the connect connect amp and play1 and play3. Since they said groups with at least one sonos one will make that group airplay2 compatible. Seem like they have the tech already. Just take the brains of the Sonos one and package it as as hub for airplay2 amazon and Google assistance.
... Or just buy a Sonos ONE.


From the way this is written, it seems like that you have to start by casting AirPlay 2 content to one of the newer speakers, then group with an old one. I was hoping they would do this a bit more automagically by having internal logic that said that "ok, the user selected this old play:3, so I will silently start the stream on this new Play:One speaker and forward it to this old one" or whatever. Of course, this could still be how it works out, but from the description it seems to be more... manual.
This would indeed be magically.


Someone might not need another speaker. 😉

Someone might not need another speaker. ;)


Exactly. I would settle for a hockey puck size device I can plug in or put in a closet. A bridge for Airplay 2 compatibility..

Someone might not need another speaker. ;)


Exactly. I would settle for a hockey puck size device I can plug in or put in a closet. A bridge for Airplay 2 compatibility..

It has been mentioned amongst my own friends, since reading the recent Sonos 'AirPlay-2' announcement, that Sonos could perhaps build a kind of AirPlay-2 'control centre' hub into their next generation Boost ?... but to me, that really just seems so unlikely at the moment, as Sonos are always going to want their customers to buy their next generation speakers. They are a speaker hardware (sales) company first and foremost.

I think the processors in the older Sonos units (Play-1/Play-3 etc.) are not powerful enough to deal with the upcoming AirPlay-2 (stereo and 5.1 audio) requirements ... so a more powerful 'gateway' or 'handler' is clearly going to be needed to deal with the streaming process.

I can see why Sonos would install such a 'gateway/handler' in all their latest products (Sonos One etc.) and next generation devices, rather than it being a small 'add-on' device with some extra processing ability.

I'm just grateful that the solution Sonos is suggesting in their announcement, appears to be a reasonable compromise, as it still keeps my older speakers, (Play-1, Play-3 etc.) on the development path with a way of playing AirPlay-2 sources through all of them.
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All Sonos devices cope perfectly well streaming from all manner of devices in mono and stereo and up to 32 devices too. Including streaming of higher bitrate flac files etc. and from all manner of devices including streaming from mobile devices.
Sonos have now said that they still sell old, outdated hardware that can't cope with the requirements of Airplay 2.
Does anybody have any actual information on what these requirements are that are so above the requirements they currently satisfy in allowing all of the above multi room functionality? Is there cpu intensive encryption and decryption going on? What is the reason?
All Sonos devices cope perfectly well streaming from all manner of devices in mono and stereo and up to 32 devices too. Including streaming of higher bitrate flac files etc. and from all manner of devices including streaming from mobile devices.
Sonos have now said that they still sell old, outdated hardware that can't cope with the requirements of Airplay 2.
Does anybody have any actual information on what these requirements are that are so above the requirements they currently satisfy in allowing all of the above multi room functionality? Is there cpu intensive encryption and decryption going on? What is the reason?


I'm certainly no hardware expert but I'm thinking it's the case that the latest Apple hardware is built around 64 bit processing. Sonos devices need to be able to cope with that faster movement of data, perhaps?
I'm certainly no hardware expert but I'm thinking it's the case that the latest Apple hardware is built around 64 bit processing. Sonos devices need to be able to cope with that faster movement of data, perhaps?
Correct. With the release of iOS 11 and macOS High Sierra 10.13.4 apps (and therefore Airplay2-enabled devices from third-party suppliers as well) MUST support 64-bit technology.

https://developer.apple.com/news/