After spending years integrating Alexa and the Google Assistant into its range of home audio products, Sonos is reportedly about to launch its own voice assistant.
Sonos Voice Control will be activated by the wake word “Hey Sonos”, according to a new report from The Verge claiming the service will launch on June 1.
Sonos fans in the US will be first in line for the rollout on all existing devices capable of running the Sonos S2 software, the report says.
According to the sources, Sonos’ internal tests have shown Sonos Voice Control “to be quicker than competing assistant services at core music tasks.” Perhaps that’s because Sonos is able to bypass some of the intermediary processes when handling requests for third-party assistants?
Naturally, any voice assistant, will require the support of a number of third-party music services and the report says Apple Music, Amazon Music, Deezer, and Pandora are already on board, as well as the own-brand Sonos Radio service.
However, Spotify and YouTube Music haven’t yet signed on, the source says, but there is still time to make that happen before launch.
This isn’t a complete surprise as there have been plenty of rumours about a potential Siri rival from Sonos in recent years. The company has been recruiting in the area and there have been hints from senior executives during interviews in the past.
Given Sonos is attempting to distinguish itself from newer hardware rivals like Apple, Google and Amazon, it would be wise for the company to have its own voice assistant for those primarily concerned with controlling their music.
It’s unlikely the company will expand into things like full smart home controls, or offer the depth of information others in the field aim to do. With that in mind, it’s likely the company will enable other services like Alexa to co-exist, the report says.