Sonos is in discussions to potentially build Roku voice control into its smart speakers, according to CNET. The report says that these are still “preliminary talks,” so they’re not a sure thing, but given that Roku’s voice assistant isn’t out yet, that makes enough sense.
The partnership, if it develops, would allow people to use the microphones built into Sonos’ speakers to control what’s playing on their Roku-connected TVs, much like you can already do with Roku’s Voice Remote. The integration could be even more powerful once Roku’s “Entertainment Assistant” launches, but we haven’t seen everything that it’ll be capable of yet.
Integrating the two products could also make it easier to set up and sync Sonos speakers with a Roku-connected TV. The full details of how the integration would work aren’t entirely clear yet, but CNET says that Sonos would integrate with Roku Connect, the Roku Entertainment Assistant, or both to enable the devices to work together and control each other.
Roku announced Roku Connect and the Roku Entertainment Assistant back in January, but neither has seen much movement since. The first Roku Connect speakers, which pair with and can be controlled by Roku-connected TVs, aren’t supposed to launch until next month. And those come from Roku.
That suggests that it could still be a little while before this partnership unfolds. Not to mention that Sonos has spent a full year promising Google Assistant support on its Sonos One speakers, and that remains in the works. (It’s still promised for later this year.) Roku is also launching a Google Assistant integration, so once those two things arrive, Sonos owners will get a very similar option for controlling their TVs.
Sonos wouldn’t confirm the talks with Roku in a comment to CNET, but a spokesperson said, “We’re open to having discussions with any number of companies crafting innovative voice experiences.”
Source: The Verge