Airplay 2 using Sonos groups

  • 25 March 2020
  • 4 replies


Hi all,


just wanted to share what I learned from the support about Airplay 2 and Sonos groups.

When trying to cast something to a Sonos One SL speaker using Airplay 2 (for instance from Apple Music) to a group defined in the Sonos app, Airplay 2 will not display the group, only individual speakers.

Apparently this is working as designed which to me is a deficiency. Using the Sonos iOS app it is possible to cast to a group. It should be possible to do the same regardless of which app is being used.

According to the support my request has been forwarded as a request for improvement. One can only hope this makes it into production in a not to far future.





4 replies


@106rallye If both Airplay and Sonos use the same grouping functionality there is no complication.


Also, if I am not mistaken, the Sonos app is not a “player” as for instance Apple Music or TuneIn but more of a remote streaming music from other players. This is what leads me to say that if the Sonos app can do it so should other apps.

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What you seem to want is a possibility to group speakers in Apple Airplay. I am not sure Apple has implemented this feature for it's own speakers. For Sonos this would mean two things:

  • you would only have to use the Airplay feature on your iPhone (for Airplay) and not also the Sonos app (for grouping), so for some users this would be less complicated; but
  • Airplay groups could be different from Sonos groups so this feature could add complicatons for other.

Since I have noticed on my system when using Airplay that the Sonos group is more stable then sending music to multiple Airplay devices, and, reading this forum, since I notice that a lot of people are confused about the possibilities of Sonos as it is, I would prefer Sonos not implementing this feature.


@Airgetlam My intention was to inform everyone interested that this behavior is considered working as designed. It is a deficiency since, as I mention, it works using the Sonos app but not other apps. If the deficiency is on Apples side or Sonos is impossible for me to tell since I work for neither company.


Again, my intent is to inform users that this is how it works at the moment (fact) and that it should work differently in the future (my opinion).

I’m confused as to why you consider this a deficiency. You’ve got two different actions going on. The first is sending an AirPlay 2 signal to a device that is capable of receiving that signal. This is an Apple display, and they would show you the fact that your device is indeed ‘casting’ to an applicable receiver. Then once the signal is in the Sonos realm, it is ‘grouped’ by the Sonos software with other speakers, which is reflected in the Sonos controller.

I haven’t checked Apple’s specifications for AirPlay 2, but it would be quite surprising if there was anything in the spec that would allow the receiving device to send additional information to the AirPlay 2 device regarding whether it was extending the signal via another non-Apple application to other devices.

On the other hand, maybe I’m wrong, and a Sonos could petition Apple to change the spec to allow such a thing, so I’m glad you submitted the request.