Sonos Controller for Android Honeycomb pictures and hands-on

Sonos has released a new version of its Android remote control application that adds support for Honeycomb tablets, better Spotify integration and a few other bonus features. The updated Sonos Controller for Android is available now on the Android Market for free.

In addition, a new version of the Sonos system software has also been released, which owners can install through a one button update process.

Both of the updates add new features to the Spotify experience, including the ability to play music from New Releases and Top Tracks menus, while Premium subscribers can also now access their Spotify Inbox. iPad and iPhone owners will also get these new features, however it is the refreshed Android application that Pocket-lint got to play with in advance of the announcement.

Loaded onto a HTC Flyer (which makes an excellent Sonos remote) and a Sony Tablet S, the new Android app is similar to its previous iteration, although it makes much better use of the real estate offered by 7-inch and 10-inch tablets alike. It actually works with Android 2.2 and up, but looks best, certainly, on a larger piece of kit.

Most functions are identical to the other former versions, which we reviewed back in April, with you being able to access your music library through astonishingly simple menus and lists, but the Spotify bonuses are much welcomed, as are new enhancements such as alarms, smoother music library management and Twitter support (to let your friends and followers know what you're listening to).

Other features of the new Sonos system software 3.6 include support for the AAC+ codec, and a new section to help smaller music streaming services offer their wares to Sonos owners.

Sonos Labs is an API run by the company that allows any streaming service or online radio station to (after approval from the Sonos team) be added to the Sonos platform. Initially, this will be at a beta level, so that listeners can give feedback in order to improve integration, and then, all being well, it can go live for real. This, essentially, helps the manufacturer realise its dream of adding every single piece of music in the world to its platform, and is certainly of benefit to the end user.

Naturally, the Sonos Controller for Android app will be able to see those new services as and when they go live, and while it doesn't quite offer the multi-tiled approach of its equivalent, there's something reassuring in its cleanness and simplicity.

Amazon Kindle Fire owners can also expect to see a version for their tablet devices in the near future. Watch this space.



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