Sonos Music API - Getting Started Guide

Types of supported content

Sonos supports several ways to play content including streaming, smart radio, on-demand, audiobooks, and podcasts. Your service may provide one or more of these mechanisms to users. Regardless of which type of content a user is playing, all content is streamed to the player; no music is stored locally on players.

Streaming radio

If your service supports streaming radio, also known as online radio, you provide a continuous stream of music or other content without any dynamic input. That is, user actions or preferences have no control over content choice; it is predetermined and the same for every user listening to your stream. This is similar to traditional over-the-air radio. An example of this is an online feed from a regular radio station.

Programmed Radio

If your service supports programmed radio, you provide a generated sequence of tracks that users cannot directly choose. However, these tracks are based in some way on user preferences - a chosen genre, ratings, likes, favorites, or other indirect inputs - and may be influenced by liking or disliking tracks as the service plays. In addition, users may be able to skip tracks (depending on the limits placed on them by your service). For example, you might offer smart radio stations initially based on a user supplied artist, track, or genre and refined by thumbs up and thumbs down indications from the user as each station plays.


If your service supports on-demand, you let users select individual tracks to play. These tracks can typically be queued up to create a personalized set of continuous music and other content. These sets can often be saved as playlists. Content stored on a personal hard drive, network drive, or a user's phone is also available to that user via an on-demand content service provided by Sonos directly.

Audiobooks and Podcasts

If your service supports resumable content, your users can listen to any number of audiobooks and individual tracks such as podcasts or songs, choose to stop listening at any point, and come back later to resume listening where they left off. For audiobooks, Sonos supports additional user navigation including skipping to the next or previous chapters, skipping 30 seconds forward or backward, as well as selecting any point in an audiobook from a sliding progress bar. See Saving and Resuming Play Position for details.