Sonos smart speakers gain one more awesome Alexa skill

Sonos Beam

Sonos Beam and Sonos One achieved what few other smart speakers even dared of by supporting multiple voice assistants simultaneously. 

This started when AirPlay 2 came to Sonos’ smart speakers last month, joining Amazon’s Alexa that came pre-installed on every speaker, and will continue when Google Assistant arrives sometime down the road.

The only problem with so many smart assistants – and with being a third-party smart speaker in the first place – is that some features from first-party speakers never make it to your hardware. 

But Amazon and Sonos are working diligently to close that gap. 

To that end, Sonos and Amazon announced today that the Amazon Announcements feature will now be supported on both the Sonos One and Sonos Beam in the US, Canada and the UK. 

The Sonos One and Sonos Beam both support the Amazon Announcements feature.

The Sonos One and Sonos Beam both support the Amazon Announcements feature.

One more piece of the puzzle

While Amazon Announcements isn't the most exciting feature in its own right – it basically turns every Alexa speaker in your house into a one-way broadcast device that can send a voice message to the other speakers – the idea of a constantly improving third-party speaker is well worth stopping to take notice of. 

As the smart home continues to expand and third-party companies like JBL, Sonos, LG and more take advantage of existing smart platforms, it's very possible that feature sets will differ depending on which speaker you use. And that can be troubling if, say, one gets a feature like voice calls and the others do not. 

The fact that Amazon and Sonos are working closely to bring the Sonos One and Sonos Beam up to par with Amazon's first-party offerings like the Amazon Echo and Amazon Echo Dot show that both parties are concerned about the future of the platform being as feature-complete on whichever device you use.

Nick Pino

Nick Pino is Managing Editor, TV and AV for TechRadar's sister site, Tom's Guide. Previously, he was the Senior Editor of Home Entertainment at TechRadar, covering TVs, headphones, speakers, video games, VR and streaming devices. He's also written for GamesRadar+, Official Xbox Magazine, PC Gamer and other outlets over the last decade, and he has a degree in computer science he's not using if anyone wants it.