Sonos launches its own streaming radio service

Sonos

Sonos Radio will now be the default service available for the company’s speaker

Sonos has always been the neutral manager of streaming services on its multiroom audio platform, but the company is about to take a big step into creating some of that content itself. Sonos Radio is a new, free-to-use streaming service that’s being introduced as part of a software update rolling out today worldwide.

Moving forward, it’ll come preloaded in the Sonos app, so I think it’s fair to think of Sonos Radio as a starting point that customers can sample before adding other services like Spotify, Apple Music, Amazon Music, Pandora, and whatever else they will be listening to. That’s a pretty advantageous spot to be in, and CEO Patrick Spence says it’s “only the beginning” as Sonos works on other services “that provide our customers a better experience, and provide our music streaming service partners an opportunity to highlight their best content.”

Sonos

Sonos says radio playback accounts for “nearly half” of all the time that customers spend listening to its products. “Complementing the 100-plus streaming options available on Sonos, the new service introduces a holistic and cohesive way to explore radio, bringing together more than 60,000 stations from multiple streaming partners alongside original programming from Sonos,” the company said in its press release.

Those partners include TuneIn and iHeartRadio, two obvious go-to picks for this category. In the Local Radio section of Sonos Radio, you’ll be able to easily pull up your local NPR station, sports talk, news shows, or other favorites — or listen to something from across the globe if you choose. You won’t get every feature of TuneIn or iHeartRadio as part of Sonos Radio, but the partnerships check off the core function of streaming live radio. Sonos says more partners, including Radio.com in the US and Global in the UK, are coming soon.

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