Sonos Releases iPhone Controller App

Discussion in 'iOS Apps' started by dss, Aug 26, 2008.

  1. dss macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2008
    #1
    If you are a Sonos owner (and you really should be, it's an AMAZING device), you probably share my enthusiasm for this apps arrival. Controlling sonos from the iPhone is a natural extension of the system. I just downloaded it and it's currently building my library (it takes some time the first time out, especially with large libraries). so I can't comment on the app itself yet, but I'm thrilled that we have something official to play with.

    Here is a link to the developers page:
    http://kupuk.com/zones
     
  2. QuarterSwede macrumors G3

    QuarterSwede

    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2005
    Location:
    Colorado Springs, CO
    #2
    I've always wondered. How is a Sonos and this app better than an Airport Express, iTunes and the Remote app?
     
  3. philgilder macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2007
    Location:
    UK
    #3
    you don't need the computer on the whole time, and can have the same music in several rooms played simultaneously, for a party for example
     
  4. dss thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2008
    #4
    There are dozens of reasons why Sonos is a vastly different beast than the setup you described. Not the least of which is easy of use and quality of audio. Sonos can play most anything you throw at it (including FLAC which many people who care about audio quality tend to use). I have my Sonos setup with a NAS so my computer is completely out of the equation. I also have a fairly large collection and Sonos makes it a breeze to navigate and easily access music and play multiple streams in different rooms, or easily link them to play together. You can also access Rhapsody over the air (no computer required) which is a fantastic all you can eat program, as well as Sirius, Pandora, Internet Radio, etc... It's by far the best addition to my home media environment in years.

    As for this app, well, I still haven't had much of a chance to test drive it but it is VERY limited in functionality. It took an hour or so to index my library.

    You can basically select a zone and then select either an album or track to play. You cannot access anything other than your actual library (nothing from the services menu such as sirius or pandora), you cannot link zones, and most importantly to me, you cannot see the "artist" level of your music library. As someone with a fairly large library, that is my typical browsing path as I have too many albums to easily navigate just at that level.

    It's a welcome first effort but I sincerely hope the developer is up for refining and improving this with future releases.
     
  5. QuarterSwede macrumors G3

    QuarterSwede

    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2005
    Location:
    Colorado Springs, CO
    #5
    Thanks for the replies. So the biggest difference is that you can play multiple streams to multiple zones. And after researching a bit it seems that some Sonos boxes can act like a receiver as well.

    Here's why:
    Internet radio/other streams or FLAC is a wash because AirFoil can stream any audio from OS X or Windows to an Airport Express/AppleTV (FLAC can be played back via VLC). Although the biggest flaw with using AirFoil is that Remote app can't control what's playing if it's not playable through iTunes.

    I guess I just don't see justifying paying around $1000 to get started with a Sonos system when I can add an Airport Express (already have one) to my current setup as desired for $100 each, just to enjoy multiple streams to multiple zones and having remote convenience to streams that won't play in iTunes (Sirius, etc). Obviously this figure is assuming that with both the Sonos system and Airport Express setup you already have 1) a mac 2) an iPhone and 3) some sort of receiver in each zone with speakers attached.

    If there's more to it please let me know because I am very interested in having in a centralized home audio through in wall/ceiling speakers by either "the box" as people call it, or some other system such as Sonos.
     
  6. dss thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2008
    #6
    I think those are good points and that is why there are different solutions out there for different needs. Personally, the ease of use and quality of the audio for me is HUGE and not having to be tethered to a PC is also a big deal, especially when running off a NAS for your library. If you really want to understand the benefits of Sonos, I would strongly suggest you check out the Sonos Forums as they are true experts over there and could probably give you a far better answer than I could. Sonos also has (by far) the best tech support I've ever encountered and has a 30 day money back guarantee so it might be worth picking up a system for a test drive to see for yourself.

    The best analogy I can come up with is VCRs and Tivo/DVRs. When they first came out, a lot of people said "I know how to use a VCR, I can program it to record shows, play back, etc... why do I need this" Now most of us can't imagine life without a DVR. They just perfectly integrate into the daily fabric of your media usage.

    </end sales pitch>
     
  7. tofupancake macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2008
    #7
    I really hope a similar thing comes out for the Squeezebox.
    EDIT: Cool, iPeng already does it! Don't know why I didn't think of just trying to access through the web interface.
     
  8. ked macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2008
    #8
    I have been a sonos user for some time and have been waiting for an iphone app interface. The sonos controller is very outdated and could really use a touch screen to help with the online searches. I tried out the itunes iphone app and would be ready to switch if it just included a sonos-like queue feature and access to online music. I know many prefer to own rather than rent from online services like napster and rhapsody, but I can't even access the itunes store in a convenient way. All that is missing is the right software, so I will continue to wait and see who comes out with it first. Also, I do not believe that sonos has the avantage when it comes to sound quality. With the right speakers and decent amplifier, quality is sure to be limited by the amount of compression typical with downloaded content.
     
  9. dss thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2008
    #9
    This app has come a long way. Zones 1.2 was released in the App Store today. It's a major upgrade and improved the UIs significantly. It also adds support for Playlists, Internet Radio, Queue Management, LineIn, etc... There is still no support for Zone Management or Services (including Sirius, Pandora, Rhapsody, etc...). There is still no search function either.

    That all being said, this is now a must have in my opinion if you have a Sonos and an iPhone/Touch and it's nice to see the developer cranking out such frequent updates.
     
  10. Superman07 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2007
    #10
    Bump. Sonos just launched a free iPhone and iPod Touch application.

    http://sonos.com/whattobuy/controllers/iphone/default.aspx

    Anybody know if a Drobo will work with Sonos? Also, how will that setup work with the netshare hardware from Drobo and the new Firefly music application for it?
     
  11. MacRumors macrumors bot

    MacRumors

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    Apr 12, 2001
    #11
    Sonos Releases iPhone Controller App

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    [​IMG]

    This one's only useful for those with Sonos hardware that provides music to multiple rooms in your house. Though, the iPhone app seems cool enough that you might actually consider buy the required hardware after seeing it.
    The video demo gives you an overview of the functionality. Essentially you can control the music to your entire house from your iPhone or iPod touch.

    App Store Link: http://phobos.apple.com/WebObjects/MZStore.woa/wa/viewSoftware?id=293523031&mt=8

    Article Link: Sonos Releases iPhone Controller App
     
  12. stownsend3 macrumors member

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    May 9, 2008
    #12
    This seems really cool. Whats a Sonos system go for these days?
     
  13. arn macrumors god

    arn

    Staff Member

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    Apr 9, 2001
    #13
  14. Superman07 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2007
    #14

    Appaerntly you don't need the controller with this application. That means you'd be able to start out with a single box. Admittedly you'd only have music in one room though. :p
     
  15. napabar macrumors regular

    napabar

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2008
    #15
    You can do this with iTunes, Airtunes, and Remote now. I have 3 zones in my apartment. My office with my iMac, my living room with Apple TV (as Airtunes client) and an Airport express in my bedroom. I am able to turn on and off each zone from the Remote program, control volume, choose songs, and stream the same music to all zones when I have a party. Much cheaper by comparison, and Airpot Express plugs into almost any speaker system known to man!
     
  16. Superman07 macrumors 6502a

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    Aug 28, 2007
    #16
    Did you hack your ATV? I wasn't aware it could act as a iTunes Server. I was under the impression that a host machine running iTunes was required.
     
  17. napabar macrumors regular

    napabar

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    Jun 12, 2008
    #17
    I didn't hack Apple TV. I'm just using it as an Airtunes client (same as an Airport Express). The Remote program is controlling iTunes on my iMac, which is streaming the music to my two other zones.
     
  18. Superman07 macrumors 6502a

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    Aug 28, 2007
    #18
    Gottcha. But as philgilder said earlier, with the Sonos system you are not required to have a host computer running. That's not the same as what you described with your setup!
     
  19. napabar macrumors regular

    napabar

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2008
    #19
    I was correcting his statement about being able to stream the same music to many rooms at the same time. I wasn't commenting on having to have a computer on the whole time (although I'm not sure why that would be an issue).
     
  20. hok macrumors newbie

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    Mar 8, 2008
    #20
  21. bubba451 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2002
    #21
    Since the Controller is now optional, a "system" (i.e. one ZonePlayer 90) is $350.

    I have a Sonos system, and I agree that the best thing about it is that it doesn't have to be tied to my computers at all. All my music is on a NAS (a recent update supports AirDisks too), so I don't have to worry about whether my computers are sleeping, busy encoding, rebooting, on a VPN, etc. The music is just always available (this is really nice for spouse acceptance).

    Anyway, as a Sonos owner, I'm thrilled to see this. Can't wait to get home to try it out.
     
  22. uva25 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2008
    #22
    Sonos is awesome. I've had it for a few years. Does what it says it does VERY WELL. Apple TV is very unstable in my opinion, even if it did what the Sonos does.
     
  23. tofupancake macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2008
    #23
    My vote is for using the logitech SqueezeBox. Much more cost effective and just as good. I control it on the iphone using the browser interface.
     
  24. uva25 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2008
    #24
    I assume you don't have many zones. I also assume you always want a receiver in the room that has zones. If I recall, Squeezebox needs a receiver or powered speakers, neither of which I want in my kitchen, living room, etc.
     
  25. ked macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2008
    #25
    sonos new app

    The new app from sonos is everything I was waiting for. I guess Sonos determined that the new app would attract new customers and and prevent current users from defecting to apple, and this would more than make up for lost sonos controller sales (the new iphone app is much much better than the sonos controller). For those who do not like itunes and are willing to pay for the sonos hardware, sonos is definitely the way to go, ... for now.
     

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