Google Home officially restores multi-speaker volume control after Sonos dispute

Google Home officially restores multi-speaker volume control after Sonos dispute

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Google Home users have a reason to celebrate, as the company has just announced an update for Android devices that has revived the much-loved feature of controlling multiple speakers or devices simultaneously through the Google Home app. This means that you can finally say goodbye to the tedious task of adjusting each speaker individually, as this update brings some added convenience to your fingertips.This feature is not technically new. You may remember that once upon a time the functionality was there, but was then stripped due to a legal dispute with Sonos. This dispute involved Sonos’s allegations that Google’s Nest and Chromecast devices infringed on their proprietary technology, including features like phone-based music streaming control, speaker group management, and automatic equalization. This led to the removal of the multi-speaker volume control, requiring users to adjust each speaker individually.However, with the resolution of the dispute, Google has reintroduced this popular feature, allowing users to effortlessly adjust the volume across multiple speakers. The reinstated, and enhanced, functionality can be accessed through the Google Home app or via Google Assistant voice commands. Additionally, Android users can access group volume control directly from their lock screens or smart displays like the Nest Hub. This eliminates the need to unlock their phones or open the app, streamlining the process for a seamless user experience.

Credit: Google

To utilize the feature within the Google Home app, users simply need to initiate a playback session, tap on the mini-player, and access the output selector. From there, they can add or remove speakers, choose preset speaker groups, and adjust the volume collectively for the selected devices.

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Furthermore, Google Assistant now recognizes voice commands to manage group volumes. Commands such as “Hey Google, turn it up” (increasing the volume by 10%) or “Hey Google, set volume to 40%” enable effortless audio control across all connected devices.

This functionality was initially restored to Pixel devices running Android 15 Beta 2 last week, but now it’s official for those running stable builds of Android. It marks a significant win for Google Home users, not only by reinstating a much-loved feature, but also introducing enhancements for increased convenience.

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