"What I wish we would’ve done is probably communicate the roadmap a little more clearly." Sonos CEO explains why its new app is going to get better, and customers will love it further down the line

Sonos Era 300 on sideboard, side front view
(Image credit: Tammy Rogers/ iMore)

There are currently two people in the world I wouldn’t want to be right now — The British Prime Minister, and anyone that has to work in the Sonos customer service department. Since updating its app, users of Sonos multi-room music systems have found that the update has damaged some useful features and outright removed others.

Sonos CEO Patrick Spence, however, is more than happy to stand by the new app update, and its modernized UI elements. His only reservation, it would appear, in an interview with The Verge, is that he wishes that the firm had been able to show customers more of its roadmap, so that they could see where the app is headed.

The issue at hand

There are a number of complaints about the app, ranging from devices either not connecting to outright missing features. The alarm settings, for example — nada, gone. Since the update speakers have been known to disconnect, and some older devices refuse to connect at all.

Of course, not every Sonos device or user is experiencing these issues, and there was a recent patch that fixed most of the bugs, to greater or lesser degrees. But there remain those missing features, which customers would like to see return.

Sonos tells us not to worry

In the interview with The Verge, Spence remarks “What I wish we would’ve done is probably communicate the roadmap a little more clearly.” He reckons that the people complaining about the app are those resistant to change, and that with a little time they’ll come to terms with the changes in the app, and, as a result, come to love all the improvements it's brought.

It seems some features were apparently removed to make way for new ones, but they’re said to eventually be brought back so that they work better with the wider Sonos ecosystem. In fact, Spence says the app is “actually much easier to navigate, more responsive, and just a better overall experience.” In his eyes, despite the complaints, the new app is a better way to connect to your Sonos devices that you have dotted around the house. He does recognize, however, that “once you add [a feature], it may become one person’s most important thing, and that matters most to that person.” He knows that Sonos had to be careful with its new app — and yet it still managed to release an app with some useful bits chopped off.

Either way, Sonos is going to keep at it with the revisions, hopefully adding in those missing features further down the road — ready for the launch of the upcoming Sonos Ace headphones.

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Tammy Rogers
Senior Staff Writer

As iMore's Senior Staff writer, Tammy uses her background in audio and Masters in screenwriting to pen engaging product reviews and informative buying guides. The resident audiophile (or audio weirdo), she's got an eye for detail and a love of top-quality sound. Apple is her bread and butter, with attention on HomeKit and Apple iPhone and Mac hardware. You won't find her far away from a keyboard even outside of working at iMore – in her spare time, she spends her free time writing feature-length and TV screenplays. Also known to enjoy driving digital cars around virtual circuits, to varying degrees of success. Just don't ask her about AirPods Max - you probably won't like her answer.