Sonos devices are known for their wide range of audio streaming options, including playing audio through line-in, Bluetooth, AirPlay, network-attached storage (NAS) and locally stored music. However, one of these methods will soon be discontinued for Android users.
The company has updated its website with a notice that reads, “Starting May 23rd, 2023, we’re removing the ability to play audio files directly to Sonos using the ‘On this device’ menu in the Sonos app for Android.” While still available, the feature allows Android users to easily play audio files stored locally on their device across a Sonos system at full quality.
The company suggests customers who want to continue playing their local files on Sonos should either upload them to a streaming service, such as YouTube Music or use a NAS solution. Sonos claims this change is due to compatibility issues with newer Android operating system versions.
It’s worth noting that the same feature for iOS and iPadOS was removed three years ago, citing reliability problems and that AirPlay support made the feature redundant.
The Verge notes that Sonos and Google are engaged in a patent infringement lawsuit, but this is likely a coincidence and not the reason for ‘on this device’ being removed. “As newer versions of mobile operating systems are released, it can sometimes change the way information is shared between devices, and this [on this device] will no longer be compatible with newer versions of the Android operating system,” wrote a Sonos rep wrote on the company’s support forum.