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Can you use any Bluetooth headphones with the Sonos app?

The Sonos app now shows an option for Bluetooth headphones, but it's not for just any old Bluetooth headphones.
The Sonos app now shows an option for Bluetooth headphones, but it’s not for just any old Bluetooth headphones. Phil Nickinson / Digital Trends

Prolific fans of Sonos — particularly those who are on the hunt for the latest app updates in hopes of vast improvements — may have noticed a new feature. And it’s one that’s definitely cause for excitement, though perhaps not quite in the way some have hoped.

A recent update has added the ability to add Bluetooth headphones to a Sonos setup. That’s exciting in its own right because you’ve never been able to use Bluetooth headphones with the Sonos app before. But it’s also an addition that’s directly tied to the announcement of the Sonos Ace headphones.

Sonos Ace beside Apple iPad running the Sonos app.
The Sonos Ace headphones and the Sonos app on a tablet. Simon Cohen / Digital Trends

Those, as you’ll recall from our first look at the Sonos Ace, are the first headphones from the company that to date has only made speakers that are not intended to live on the side of your head. And you’ll also recall that the Sonos Ace actually are more like traditional Bluetooth headphones in that you don’t actually have to use the Sonos app to use them. (And that’s a good thing.) You’ll just pair them like any other Bluetooth headphones and get to listening via whatever app you like to use.

But — also just like other Bluetooth headphones — that doesn’t mean you won’t ever want use them in conjunction with their app. Pairing with the Sonos app will give you access to an EQ, and it’s also how you’ll control active noise cancellation, as well as spatial audio and head tracking. You’ll also be able to toggle the wear sensors (which detect if they’re actually on your head), and you’ll be able to pair with a second device via Bluetooth Multipoint. You’ll also be able to see the precise battery level, which is always nice.

We can understand the confusion, though. The way the option looks in the settings menu could lead you to believe that you can add any old Bluetooth headphones to the app. But (for now, anyway), that’s just not the case. It’s Sonos Ace, or bust.

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Phil Nickinson
Phil spent the 2000s making newspapers with the Pensacola (Fla.) News Journal, the 2010s with Android Central and then the…
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