Amazon just announced a new addition to the Amazon Alexa program. With the feature, users of Amazon echo devices can now handle the control and synchronization of music across multiple Alexa-enabled devices in their homes. For now, the feature is available in a few countries and only supports music, certain devices, and services. Read on to find out all there is to know about the new service as well as how to set it up.
What does Alexa multi-room music mean?
The multi-room music is just as the phrase suggests. It refers to being able to listen to music in multiple rooms. Depending on the way the system is set up, the feature allows you to play the same music in all rooms, different music in different rooms, or just a couple of music simultaneously.
With the new Amazon Alexa feature, you can group two or more echo devices together, give the group a name and with voice command, you can ask the system to play a particular music with the group you have created. Not only will Alexa play tunes from Amazon Music, depending on your location, it will also search other streaming services for the music you requested.
Setting up the system
The first thing to do is to register the Alexa-enabled devices which you want to link together to a single Amazon account. Put all the devices on the same Wi-Fi network, and then with the Alexa app, you can set them up for multi-room music, by creating a group for them. You can visit the Amazon customer support page to learn more about doing this.
After you’ve successfully set up the Amazon echo devices and linked to the same network, open the Amazon Alexa mobile app and proceed as outlined here:
- Select Smart Home from the menu,
- Select the Groups category,
- Select Create Groups to create a group,
- Tap on Multi-Room Music Group,
- Select a pre-set group name or tap “Create Custom” and enter a name,
- Tap Next. The Alexa app will confirm it created your group, and
- Once enabled, say: “Play [song or artist] [Echo devices’ group name]”.
Which devices and music services are supported?
As of today, the availability of the feature is limited to Amazon Echo and Amazon Echo Dot devices in the UK, US, Austria, and Germany. Amazon is also giving tools to developers so that third parties will be able to provide devices that support the feature.
This means that some companies like Samsung, Bose, and Sonos will be able to provide speakers that support Alexa multi-room music. When this happens, it ultimately means that you will be able to play and synchronize music on Amazon Echo as well as third-party Alexa-enabled devices.
Also, the feature works with services such as Amazon Music and TuneIn. It is expected to work with Spotify soon. For users in the United States, you can sync up the device to Pandora and iHeartRadio, with SiriusXM expected to join soon.
However, neither does the feature allow fast forwarding or rewinding, nor does it support connections through Bluetooth while streaming, unless the connection is wired to an external speaker.
Lastly, the multi-room music feature from Amazon does any other content aside from music, be it eBooks or skills.