You don’t have to stick to one music or podcast app. With the Sonos app and a Wi-Fi connection, your speaker can connect to dozens of services with just a few taps.
The beauty of Wi-Fi speakers is that they aren’t bound to any particular device. Most of them also offer ways to connect directly to streaming music services so they can continue playing music, even if you leave the room or house.
Sonos’ whole-home Wi-Fi speakers can connect directly to over 100 different services(Opens in a new window). This includes popular music services like Spotify and Apple Music, but also Audible for audiobooks and iHeartRadio for local radio stations.
You’ll need a subscription to some of these services, but there are free options as well, like the Sonos Radio service that will stream music to get you started.
Sonos speakers can be used with Apple AirPlay or Spotify Connect. Some, like the Move and Roam, include Bluetooth connectivity. But if you use the Sonos app, your speakers connect via Wi-Fi, meaning other people in the house can jump in and add songs to the queue, switch the service, or change the volume from their own devices. In some contexts, it also means that a higher-quality version of the song can be played.
To add a new service to your Sonos system, open the Sonos app on your mobile device and tap Settings > Services & Voice > Add a Service.
Scroll through the list of available options to find the audio service you want and then follow its login directions. Some services will authorize from an app already on your phone while others will require you to enter your username and password.
You can also add a new service to your Sonos system from the desktop app(Opens in a new window) for Windows and macOS machines. Open the app and select Add a Service under the Source column. If you don’t see the option to add a new service, you may need to update a speaker to the latest software(Opens in a new window) before new services can be added.
If you subscribe to a family plan for Apple Music or Spotify, you’re able to add multiple accounts to the Sonos app. To do so, repeat the steps above with a device that is signed into the streaming music service.
Sonos authorizes Apple’s music service directly from Apple’s app. That means if you want to add a second Apple Music account from the same device, you would need to log out of Apple Music, sign in with a family member’s credentials, and then add the account in the Sonos app again.
Why should you add multiple accounts? Everything you listen to on a Sonos speaker, through your music service of choice, gets logged to that account. If someone else listens to their favorite tunes on your account, your recommendations (as well as your Spotify Wrapped or Apple Music Replay) could be skewed by their selections.
If you don’t subscribe to a streaming music service, set up Sonos Radio(Opens in a new window), a free, ad-supported service that comes ready to go; nothing needs to be set up or configured. Sonos Radio HD(Opens in a new window) is the paid version of this same service and costs $9.99 a month. It offers lossless audio, ad-free listening, exclusive content, original programming, and the ability to skip and replay songs.
Sonos now offers its own voice assistant, which can be summoned with, “Hey Sonos.” It can tap into your streaming service of choice to play music on a Sonos speaker. If you have Apple Music and Spotify connected through Sonos, for example, you can speak commands(Opens in a new window) like, “Hey Sonos, play Harry Styles’ ‘As it Was’ on Apple Music.”
To set up Sonos Voice Control from a mobile device, head to Settings > Services & Voice > Add a Voice Assistant > Sonos Voice Control and follow the remaining directions.
Amazon Alexa(Opens in a new window) and Google Assistant(Opens in a new window) are also available to use on compatible Sonos speakers with microphones. (Sonos SL products do not have microphones.)
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Tyler Hayes is an early adopter, technology writer based in California who’s contributed to Fast Company, BuzzFeed, and Billboard, among others.
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