It also means you can now loop in Appleâs own HomePod into your Sonos setup without the hassle of messing with iTunes and Apple TV. Double hooray.
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Apple just recently updated the HomePod to allow for multi-room audio, a big feature for its young smart speaker, but for those with Sonos setups, pairing the HomePod has not been an option - until now.
Sonos is the first third-party speaker maker to bestow AirPlay 2 on its speakers, which works on the Sonos One, Play:5, Playbar and the new Sonos Beam. Sadly it wonât be coming to older speakers (Sonos says theyâre just not powerful enough) but if you have any of the new ones on your network, the older speakers will be able to piggyback off their AirPlay 2, so thatâs something.
Below weâll walk you through the process of getting the HomePod synced up with your Sonos system using the power of AirPlay 2.
First, get Sonos up to date
AirPlay 2 has only just rolled out to Sonos systems, and youâll need to make sure itâs actually on there before proceeding any further. First of all, make sure the app on your iOS device is updated by visiting the App Store. You should see an update on there that mentions AirPlay 2. Got it? Great. Next up:
1) Open the app, and tap on More
2) Tap Update, which will firstly check the app. If prompted, re-route to the App Store and get the new version installed.
3) If not re-routed, tap Update to get the new software installed.
We had a problem the first time where it told us the update had failed. Should it do that, just tap Try Again. Also note: we too had a problem where the app wasnât letting us update from the App Store, even when Sonos re-routed us. If the same happens to you, simply uninstall the app and reinstall. Itâs pretty quick to set it up again.
Time to group them together
Now, once you've got AirPlay 2 running on Sonos, you should be able to see all your connected Sonos speakers from your iOS device. Head to Control Center, which you can access by swiping up and doing a Force Touch on audio widget. Then tap the AirPlay icon at the top right.
Assuming they're all connected, you can now see your HomePod and Sonos speakers side by side. Simply tap the ones you want to connect up and a little tick icon should appear, signifying they're all on the same network.
You can also hook them up through your music app of choice. In Apple Music, tap the AirPlay icon that shows up on the bottom. If you worship at the alter of Spotify, there're also an icon at the bottom of the Now Playing screen that brings up AirPlay control.
You can also loop your speakers together in the Sonos app, but this has been less reliable in use so far. And honestly, we can't see why you'd want to do it this way. But if you do, you can hit the grouping icon to the right of the volume bar.
How to turn on Siri control
The HomePod is unique in that Siri is very integrated. AirPlay 2 allows for a level of Siri control over Sonos speakers too, albeit not quite to the same level. Still, if you want to give Siri maximum control on Sonos, you'll need to add your speakers into the Home app. Simply do the following:
1) Open the Home app on your iOS device
2) Tap the + icon in the top right corner.
3) Hit Add Accessory.
4) Tap where it says 'Don't have a code or can't scan?'
5) Give it a second to populate with your Sonos speakers, then tap the one you want to add.
Once you've done this, you'll be able to rename your Sonos speakers in the Home app. Trust us, it's worth doing this, as you'll be able to ask Siri to start playback on individual Sonos speakers.