The reviewer has been compensated in the form of a Best Buy Gift Card and/or received the product/service at a reduced price or for free.
The new Sonos One Wireless Speaker with Amazon Alexa Voice Assistant has just launched at Best Buy.
It’s been a couple of years now since Amazon introduced the world to the Echo – a smart speaker technology with a personal voice activated assistant name Alexa. This marvelous technology allowed consumers to ask Alexa questions about anything such as sports scores, weather forecasts, recipes, etc. You can use it to set reminders or make to-do lists as well, in addition to playing your favorite music from streaming services and even shopping! Need some new shoes? Well, if you’ve got an Amazon account (and who doesn’t these days) just ask Alexa to order you some, and they’ll be shipped forthwith. Since then, Google’s smart speaker offering, the Google Home, has given Amazon’s Echo a serious run for their money. As you can imagine it provides practically everything the Echo can, but works much better with Google applications like Gmail and Google Maps. Both of these products are getting better all the time too, with updates that now allow for voice messaging and phone calls, BlueTooth connectivity, and much more thanks to their ability to “learn” hundreds of skills. But what they both are sorely lacking in is speaker quality. While both renditions contain adequate speakers to function, neither can produce truly exceptional sound quality preferred by audiophiles who would utilize them mainly for listening to music. The answer to that problem was to buy separate smart speakers that could work with the voice assistant over Wi-Fi. Sonos is one such company that provided stellar quality smart home speakers that could be connected to an existing Amazon Echo. This was especially crucial if you only owned an Echo Dot (a mini version of Echo with a very tiny speaker) since it was designed to be used with external speakers either wired or over BlueTooth. Buying everything individually however proves to be an expensive undertaking notably for those on a budget. Now there is a solution, and it happens to be my first foray into the world of voice assisted speaker technology; the Sonos One.
The Sonos One is a product that integrates its renowned speaker technology and Amazons Alexa voice assistant into a single unit! It combines everything you love about Alexa: Amazon’s premier voice assistant technology, and everything you love about Sonos: rich, full-bodied sound. Crisp clean treble, warm and inviting mid-range, and deep textured bass you can feel, fill the room while playing all your favorite songs. Simply download the Sonos app and the Alexa app to your smart phone/device, spend a few minutes creating/logging into accounts, and you can begin adding your favorite music services like, Amazon Music, Pandora, and iHeart Radio. Play, pause, skip, replay your tracks all using voice commands, and when combined with other Sonos smart speakers, you can play them all in any room of the house! You can play the same song or even different ones in which ever room you choose; adjust volume separately or as a unit. The choice is yours! You can even connect 2 Sonos One’s in the same room and have them work as a stereo pair of high performance audio speakers.
Noticeably missing from the list is Spotify which cannot be accessed through the voice command, but is able to be used through the Sonos app. On December 21st, however, just in time for Christmas the voice command access is promised to be available through an update. Another noticeable absence is the lack of BlueTooth connectivity, which has been an ongoing issue with Sonos’s other smart speaker PLAY line. However, coming in 2018 will be another awesome feature which will further set the Sonos One apart from the rest of the field; the ability to utilize Google’s home assistant as well! Being able to use the top 2 competing voice assistants on the market with top tier audio multi-room Sonos speaker technology is an unparalleled achievement that definitely makes the Sonos One the best choice for anyone looking to upgrade or delve for the first time into the future of smart home voice automation. Continuous updates for Sonos, Alexa, and Google Assistant will further expand its usefulness well into the coming years. Even though the $199.99 price tag is a bit steeper than the other options, its smart capabilities and vibrant sound make it the best choice for music lovers hands down! A must have item for the casual listener or hardcore audiophile this Christmas.
Check out the Sonos One at Best Buy