Since AirPlay 2’s official roll-out last week, the question on everyone’s lips has been – when is Sonos adding support? Well, now the company has confirmed that ‘newer’ Sonos speakers will be receiving AirPlay 2 functionality in July.
The products currently confirmed to be compatible with AirPlay 2 from launch are the Sonos One, the second-generation Play:5, and Playbase. The newly-announced Sonos Beam is also amongst the speakers getting compatibility with Apple’s multi-room audio technology. As it stands, those are the only speakers getting support for AirPlay 2, so if it’s not listed – it’s likely going without.
Sonos’ approach to multi-room audio has been to be platform agnostic. That’s why the company now has intentions to support AirPlay 2, Alexa, and the Google Assistant. There’s no word on when Google Assistant support is landing, but the company has affirmed that it will still be this year. Why does a platform agnostic approach matter? Well, users can now be sure that no matter what device, platform, or music streaming service they use, Sonos will support it. It also allows users to use more than one service, meaning they’re not locked in if members of their family use Apple Music while others use Spotify.
“We’re going to continue to build systems, not disposable speakers,” says Sonos CEO Patrick Spence. “We will remain fiercely open.”
Unlike with the Apple HomePod, users will still be incapable of asking Alexa on the Sonos One or Beam to play music from Apple Music. They will be able to control music playing on the speaker from an iPhone using AirPlay 2, however; no matter what music streaming service is in-use. Apple Music will also continue to be supported from inside the Sonos app.
While AirPlay 2’s purpose is to make it easier to create multi-room audio systems, it will be fully compatible with Sonos’ system. That means users who have already created room groupings in the Sonos app will be able to continue using those groups inside the AirPlay 2 settings.