Music filling every room in the house is an audiophile’s dream. Thanks to Amazon Alexa, that dream is finally about to come true. A new Alexa feature now allows users to control and synchronize music across multiple Echo devices around the home. In order to play music on a specific Echo or a group of them, all users have to do is ask. For those without an Echo, Amazon will soon bring this ability to other smart speakers running Alexa.
The update comes to Amazon’s Echo, Echo Dot, and Echo Show. Current support for music synchronization includes such streaming services as Amazon Music, TuneIn, iHeartRadio, and Pandora, with support for Spotify and SiriusXM coming soon. In order to create a group with two or more Echo devices, users must use the Alexa app and name the new group. For example, if a group is named “downstairs,” users can play music through the entire group by saying, “Alexa, play John Mayer downstairs.” Multiroom music can now be used on Echo devices throughout the U.S., U.K., and Germany.
In addition to updating its own Echo devices, Amazon has also announced two new sets of tools to allow developers to bring multiroom music control to other smart speakers. By using the Alexa Voice Service (AVS), new tools allow stand-alone AVS speakers to sync up with updated Echo devices. These tools will be available to developers early next year.
Other new tools enable device manufacturers to allow Alexa to work through their connected audio equipment. For example, a user can direct any Alexa-enabled device to play music through their connected audio systems. Amazon is already working with top brands such as Sonos, Bose, Sound United, and Samsung. Developers can preview these tools right now.
In just the past few months, Amazon has updated Alexa to create a more seamless entertainment experience. Past updates include controlling Amazon Fire TV and home entertainment systems through Echo; pulling up music lyrics, Amazon Video, and movie trailers through Echo Show; and searching for music based on activity.