Spotify has finally made its US debut, but the streaming music service is about more than just playback on your PC or Mac. As well as the mobile clients for iPhone, Android and other platforms - which we reviewed yesterday - there's a growing ecosystem of third-party boxes that support Spotify playback like Sonos and Onkyo.
If you are a fan of digital music and you prefer to stream that music from one central source out to all the rooms in your home you are likely familiar with Sonos. The company has a full line of streaming music gear that will get you r tunes just about anywhere you want in your house. A new Sonos speaker has surfaced thanks to our palls at the FCC as it crosses the test bench to get the approvals it needs to hit stores near you.
Sonos has released its Sonos Controller for Android app, allowing users of Android 2.1 or higher smartphones or tablets to remotely control their multi-room audio systems without paying for a separate remote. Meanwhile, the company has also added Apple AirPlay support in Sonos firmware v3.4, allowing an AirPort Express to be plugged into a Sonos device's aux-in input and stream from it around the home.
Sonos has confirmed that its Sonos Controller for Android app is delayed, with the free remote control software now not expected to be released until April 2011. Demonstrated to us at MWC 2011 last month, the app was originally on course for a release this month, but is apparently taking Sonos longer to test than originally expected.
Sonos has announced that it has now expanded its options for streaming media services to its multiroom audio systems like the S5 pictured here. Sonos now offers XM satellite radio subscribers the ability to stream and enjoy SiriusXM radio on the Sonos audio gear. Sirius satellite radio has been able to stream on the audio gear for years.
It's ShowStoppers, the unofficial pre-MWC event, and we've just caught up with the Sonos team to take a look at the latest beta of their Sonos Controller for Android app. Headed to the Android Market in March 2011 as a free download, the app allows for all the control of its iOS counterpart but also a few extra features thanks to Google's broader hardware flexibility in Android.
Sonos has announced its latest controller app, this time headed to Android smartphones. The Sonos Controller for Android will hit the Market in late March and, like the company's existing iOS apps, be a free download. New on the Android version, however, is music voice search, which will allow users to search for tracks, artists and albums using spoken requests.
Voice control also works for searching for new streaming radio stations, and the Android app has the same multi-room volume and track control as its predecessors. It requires a device running Android 2.1 or later, with a screen size of HVGA 320 x 480, WVGA 480 x 800 or WVGA 480 x 854; that basically means most recent phones.
Sonos is considering expanding its streaming audio system to offer products for in-car and headphone use, as part of an eventual push to cover more of the places that users listen to music. Sonos co-founder and VP of sales and marketing Tom Cullen told GigaOM that the company's roadmap was guided by the principle that "people listen to music in other places." However, the exec wouldn't pin a release date on an Android controller app.
Sonos has confirmed that their Wireless Dock WD100 - which allows you to drop your iPhone or iPod into a simple cradle, and then funnel the music stored on it across your network of Sonos ZonePlayer media boxes - is now shipping. Priced at $119.99, the desktop cradle requires only a power connection, since - as the name suggests - it has integrated wireless support.
Just as CDs have quickly been overtaken by digital downloads, so the number of people wanting to get their music off the computer and through speakers in their living room, kitchen and bedroom has increased. Wading into that market is Raumfeld, promising "Hi-Fi for the digital age" with their eponymous modular system. Still, you can't get far in multi-room audio without tripping over Sonos, so the question is whether the little-known German start-up can compete. Check out the full SlashGear review after the cut.