AUDIO OUTFIT Sonos has unveiled the 'One', a speaker that can be controlled using both Amazon's Alexa and Google Assistant.
The launch of the Sonos One is bad news for Apple. At the unveiling of its HomePod speaker earlier this year, the firm targeted Sonos for forcing users to control it using an app, unlike its new Siri-controlled device.
Sonos' new speaker, however, will allow users to control it by barking commands at its baked-in Alexa AI assistant, with Google Assistant support to also arrive on the speaker next year.
This also means that, as well as being able to control music playback (with over 80 streaming services supported at launch), users will also be able to quiz the Sonos One about the weather and the latest headlines and will be able to bark commands in order to control their entire Sonos home sound systems.
Sonos notes that, when Google Assistant arrives, Sonos One owners will also gain the ability to "ask questions, keep track of the latest news, dim the lights, or hear about what's next on the to-do list."
Of course, Sonos has also focused on sound quality and the speaker comes equipped with two Class-D digital amplifiers, one tweeter and one-mid woofer. Voice control is carried out using the built-in six mic array, while adaptive noise suppression ensures the speaker understands everything clearly.
Sonos CEO Patrick Spence said: "We live in a golden age of streaming entertainment. But so much of this great content is being pushed through smart speakers that aren't designed with sound quality in mind.
"With our open approach to collaboration, agnostic approach to voice services, the strength of our many innovative partners, and a sound platform designed for the whole home, we're helping people listen more and listen better."
The Sonos One will be available in the UK from 24 October, months ahead of Apple's HomePod, and will fetch just £199. It's available to pre-order now on the Sonos website.
The firm also announced this week that existing Songs speaker owners will also be receiving Amazon Alexa support. A software update will allow users to control their speaker, assuming they have a nearby Amazon Echo or Echo Dot, to control music playback. µ
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