I make no secret of the fact that I am a big Sonos fan; it is the one thing I recommend for every home. I’ve previously gushed about the mini but mighty Play One, the Sonos Playbar and more but now I’m excited to share another Sonos first: the Sonos One.
The Sonos One, available from October 24th, has Amazon Alexa built-in. Pop a Sonos One in your home, download the Alexa app and get started. The Sonos One combines the incredible sound quality we’ve come to expect from Sonos with Amazon Alexa, the simple-to-use voice command system. As well as completely hands-free control of your music you get all the features you’d expect from Alexa, like news and traffic updates, scheduling information for your day, weather reports and you can even control your heating, lighting and electrical appliances*.
You can start music with a simple voice command with Amazon Prime Music, Amazon Unlimited, Pandora, Radio by Tune-In, iHeart Radio, and Sirius XM. You can manually start a playlist or queue from Spotify, Google Play, Apple Music, or any other Sonos compatible music services and then play/pause, skip track, and control volume with your voice.
So far, so wordy, but I am excited about the everyday practical use of the Sonos One. At night, I can ask Alexa to wake me at a certain time, with a certain song, playlist or radio station. Once up, I can ‘tell’ the Sonos One to play my favourite radio station, ask what the weather will be like and find out what my schedule is for the day. Later, I can use my voice to control what music to play while I cook – or even ask for recipe ideas, wine pairing suggestions and convert American ‘cup’ measurements into millilitres – and then request a soothing lullaby when I’m tucking the kids in.
The possibilities for incredibly practical use don’t end there as you can talk to the Sonos One to control your lighting, heating, security and with more and more appliances becoming ‘smart’, you could soon be using your Sonos One for so much more (subject to compatible appliances and smart-enabled devices.)
Much like Sonos’ existing speakers, the Sonos One can be used a standalone speaker, or can be wirelessly paired for stereo, or used in conjunction with PlayBase or PlayBar for a home cinema surround setup. If you’ve already got Sonos speakers, the Sonos One can use voice control to play the same music on all your speakers or you can use the voice control to play different things in different rooms.
In terms of design and styling, the Sonos One has been built on the existing Play:One footprint. However, while it may look similar there are a few fundamental differences. Firstly, the Sonos One has a six-microphone array which is how the Alexa voice control receives your ‘commands’. There’s a white microphone LED indicator that lets you know when Alexa is listening, ensuring that you don’t inadvertently order a pizza.
The next difference is that the buttons found on the Sonos Play:1 have been replaced with touch controls and a ‘swipe’ gesture to move back and forth between tracks. This small alteration makes the speaker feel – and look – much sleeker.
The Sonos One will include mounting hardware, so that it can be mounted to walls, ceilings or placed on a compatible speaker stand. The Sonos One is also humidity-resistant, so that it can be the backing track to your shower singalong or even outside on the patio during a summer barbecue.
In terms of audio, there are 2 Class-D digital amplifiers perfectly tuned to match the speaker drivers and acoustic architecture. One tweeter creates a crisp and clear high-frequency response and the mid-woofer ensures you’ll hear the faithful playback of mid-range vocal frequencies plus the rich, deep bass we’ve come to expect from Sonos speakers.