APP OF THE DAY: Sonos Controller for Android review (Android)

The Sonos Controller for iPhone has been out for years, and the iPad version has been with us for a while, but what about Android?

Finally, Sonos has realised that music listeners aren’t just people with white headphones, and therefore launched a Sonos Controller for Android version of the software, allowing a whole host of new users to remotely access what is one of the best music systems on the market.

Sonos Controller for Android

Format
Android
Price
free
Where
Android Market

Download the app, install it, press a button on any one of your Sonos ZonePlayers and away you go. It really is that easy.

If you’re already using an iPhone, iPod touch or the dedicated touchscreen controller sold by Sonos, you’ll be right at home - the software is virtually identical and allows you to zip through the Zones and your music options at the touch.

A couple of things, however, are new to the Android offering. Most notable is that volume can be controlled via the hardware buttons on most Android phones. And voice search can be performed from within the app. Plus, it also features the ability to press back on your phone rather than having to press a dedicated icon on screen.

Bigger screen Android phones benefit slightly, but there isn’t little in it and aside from a slight difference in the interface here and there it’s all very easy to understand and use.

In practice, the volume buttons work a treat making changing volume on the fly really easy, and the voice search saves you having to tap away at a tiny keyboard.

It also gets around the bug that won’t show you the artist name until you’ve completely spelt out the name of the artist you are looking for. No longer do you have to work out how to spell Moloko or Captain Beefheart (Dan’s favourite by the way) you just press the search button and start talking. The search bit’s all done by Google rather than Sonos so works well. Ladeey Gaaa-Gaaaa.

As for speed and performance, we've tested it using a HTC Desire on our system, although we've also seen it work on a Samsung Nexus S and the Motorola Defy. Interestingly, we have noticed a speed difference between the three. Our HTC Desire, though, was more than capable of the job, giving a smooth experience in the menus and accessing services like Spotify.

So, the big question is, is it better than the iPhone version? And, aside from the new AirPlay feature that's just been released, I think it is. If you’re holding on to your iPhone because of your Sonos system, the Sonos Controller for Android app just gave you one less excuse.



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