Sonos One Review – A Smart Speaker with Built-in Amazon Alexa

sonos one reviewSmart speakers have completely revolutionized the world of smart home and speakers in these recent years but unfortunately, none of these smart speakers produced premium quality sound as wired, non-smart stereo speakers. With the creation of Sonos One and its subsequent integration of Amazon’s smart voice assistant, Alexa, the tides are shifting and this smart speaker might actually be the first of its kind to deliver both smart features and an excellent audio quality.

The speaker isn’t as cheap as the Amazon Echo line or the Google Home but with better sound quality and stronger speakers, the price-to-performance ratio is pretty spot on. The Apple HomePod, on the other hand, is quite high end and produces a dynamic sound as well. But if you’re looking for a smart speaker that doesn’t break the bank and still produces great quality, crisp audio, Sonos One is the way to go.

The smart speaker is the first from the company to have Alexa integration so now you can use simple voice commands to stream your favorite music. The device is rapidly gaining popularity in the tech world and for a good reason. If you’re planning to buy a new smart home speaker for your home, don’t forget to check this one out as well!

Sonos One Review

The Looks

When it comes to looks, the Sonos One is pretty classy. It might be a little larger than other popular smart speakers but its intelligent, inconspicuous design is similar to a product made by Apple. However, if you like the smaller, cylindrical or spherical bodies of the Echo smart speakers, you might not be impressed with the design of the Bluetooth speaker. In the end, its looks all depend upon personal preference.

The body of the speaker is roughly rectangular in shape with a flat top and no physical buttons as the previous non-smart Sonos speaker models did. There are however buttons you can tap on the flat top to adjust the volume of the music or to play, pause and skip to the next track. The Sonos One also has two LED lights on top that blink when the voice recognition is in function or when there’s a connectivity issue. One of the lights is situated below a microphone icon that indicates if, and when, the microphone is picking up sounds and voice commands.

Specs & Performance

The speaker is incorporated with the same audio components as other speakers made by the company. This means that the device, despite being a smart speaker, is able to produce the same quality dynamic, crisp audio output as any other speaker. The microphones consist of an array of six far field microphones to pick up voice commands at a decent amount of distance.

The only thing that the speaker lacks is bass output. The bass isn’t as strong as other stereo speakers but at the price and smart features Sonos One is offering, the sound quality is pretty amazing.

You can also connect two speakers together for an even more immersive music experience. You can’t, however, pair the smart speaker to another Sonos speaker, say for example the Play:1. Nonetheless, the paired smart speakers can produce well balanced, loud and dynamic audio.

The speaker supports a limited music streaming platforms though. Since it is integrated with Alexa, the speaker can play music that Amazon supports like Amazon Music, Pandora, iHeartRadio and TuneIn. The latest update in the device has also allowed compatibility with Spotify.

Alexa in Sonos One

Currently the only voice assistant integrated in the Sonos One is Amazon’s voice assistant, Alexa. We might expect compatibility of the speaker with Google Assistant sooner rather than later as well.

sonos one smart bluetooth speaker review

Image Credits: Amazon

Alexa can perform basically the same functions as she does on any Echo smart speaker. You can ask Alexa to play your songs for you and adjust the volume or skip to the next track easily. The device, through Alexa, can also take control of your smart home or order food and a cab. Alexa can also read you the latest news updates and tell you how the weather will be for the day. Alexa in the speaker is, however, a little more buggy than it is in the Echo line of speakers. It’s easier for this smart speaker to mishear and misinterpret your voice commands which can be a bit frustrating.

Two features that the device lacks with Alexa are voice calling and texting. These functions are currently only available with the Amazon Echo speakers.

Setting up the speaker is a little tricky as well. You’ll need to download both the Sonos app and the Amazon Alexa app on your smart phone, connect the speaker via Bluetooth and WiFi and pair the applications together.

Sonos One Review – The Verdict

With the price and the quality of features the speaker is offering, it can easily compete with the more famous smart speaker brands like Amazon Echo and the Google Home. It’s the sound quality in the Sonos One speaker that makes it the clear winner in performance although the smart assistant features could need some fine tuning.

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