First there was Amazon’s Alexa and it’s speakers and then along came Google Home which built upon this and included a better speaker. Now there is even more competition with Apple’s upcoming HomePod which apparently includes a speaker that blows Amazon’s and Google’s offerings out of the water. A high end speaker with an included digital assistant made by Apple is no doubt making the high-end speaker manufacturers very nervous.
Voice control works by your voice enabled Sonos Product “listening” for a specific wake word. Please note that not all Sonos Products are voice enabled.
The Product will record until you are finished with your voice command. The actual recording of your voice command is then sent to the voice partner you have authorized to receive such recording (for example, Amazon).
This part of the policy fits with how Amazon’s Alexa works but when Variety reached out to Sonos they received so much more from the Sonos spokesperson:
It covers those things that we’ve already talked about like Alexa integration, currently in private beta. It also covers future voice experiences like additional voice assistants and any future products with integrated microphones.
This leads us to the hypothesis that Sonos are not limiting themselves to just one digital assistant, leaving the door open for a Google Assistant-powered speaker. With Alexa not available worldwide it seems sensible that Sonos would not limit a product to only a few markets and the policy has also been changed on the Australian Sonos site as well.
This statement and the follow-up response from Sonos suggest that the new Sonos speakers with integrated voice assistant(s) will be arriving very soon. Sonos tend to bring most of their products to Australia so we can only hope that they also bring a Google Assistant-powered smart speaker. We have reached out to Sonos Australia for further comment.