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GoogleNestTeam
Community Manager (Admin)
Community Manager (Admin)

Hey everyone, 

Due to a recent legal ruling we’re making some changes to how you set up your devices and the Speaker Group functionality will work moving forward. If you’re using the Speaker Group feature to control the volume in the Google Home app, by voice with the Google Assistant, or directly on your Nest Hub display, you’ll notice a few changes: 

  • To adjust volume on your speaker groups, you will need to adjust each speaker individually instead of using the group volume controller. You’ll also no longer be able to change your Speaker Group volume using your phone’s physical volume button. 
  • Most Speaker Groups should continue functioning as expected unless you have a speaker group containing other brands of Cast-based devices, like JBL or Lenovo, they need to be on 1.52.272222 or higher Cast firmware version. Check out this article on how to find your device’s firmware version or contact your device maker. 
  • A small set of users will need to use the ‘Device Utility app’ (DUA) to complete product installation and updates. You may receive a prompt to download and run DUA, and it will ensure that your device is connected to Wi-Fi and receives the most updated software version. 

We will continue to support our users and work to minimize any additional changes.

Thanks, 

Google Nest team

885 Comments
Gvoettiner7
Community Member

Is this why none of my speaker groups work anymore? When I try playing on my “home group “ or “downstairs” only one speaker works at a time and it randomly picks them. 

fpatou
Community Member

Is it too much to ask to have a clear and complete vision with simple words on the status for the pairs of speakers :

are they considered in their features as a group or as a single device?

Please communicate on your next steps !!!!

For a ww leader in software topic...you seem to miss all the basic rules to be agile and transparent in your plans for future releases regarding audio devices managed  by your code (or maybe this is sonos code...this may be the reason why you are not able to understand it !) 

CuirBear
Community Member

AIRMUSIC APP

This works.

There is  a delay that needs to be tweaked, but I am able to cast most music apps to multiple speakers at once.

Only issue, apparently, if that Spotify is unable to be cast via app, need to use webpage. Haven't tried yet.

This will do until Google can get their act together and fix group casting.

Ninjamber
Community Member

Absolute garage.  I can't believe how stupid this is from a PR standpoint.  Screw over users to avoid throwing a few crumbs of your multibillion dollar revenu to Sonos.  Unbelievable!  5 year olds know how to better make amends when they mess up.

 

Get your act together folks.

HBZ
Community Member

I have a workaround if you're using the Home app on Android.

1. Uninstall "Home"

2. Install the November 2021 version of "Home" from apkmirror 

That's Google Home 2.46.1.7

3. Immediately and quickly, after install, open Play Store

4. Search for "Home",

5. select the app, and

6. using the Ellipses menu, turn off auto-update for the app

5. Open Home and select a Speaker Group

Now, Groups are working perfectly again with the option to cast

 

Hopefully, by the time hardware firmware gets upgraded enough to kill this workaround, Google will have sorted out their legal position.

 

 

tommykat1
Community Member

@HBZ , thank you for this, it worked for me too!

Note for others, you don't lose any of your settings, so you won't need to reinstall your devices, or rebuild your speaker groups. That in itself is huge for me, since I have 15 devices I'd have to mess with.

To be clear, this is for my Android Galaxy phone, and my specific desire is to mirror my device and cast "Samsung Music Player" to speaker groups. I don't use a subscription music service.

This workaround is awesome!

CuirBear
Community Member

@HBZ It did not work for me.

I cast through music services. Not sure this makes a difference.

Also, when I tried to add a speaker to the cast group, it was unable to do so.

tommykat1
Community Member

Addendum to my last post:

(1) After installation of the earlier (November) version, I was taken to the "Welcome" page, and assumed I'd have to set up the app again. However, when hitting "Next," I went directly to the configured application, and was greeted by the completely enabled working (old) version, with my smart home's devices and settings as normal.

(2) Casting to groups (through mirroring) would not work until I restarted my phone.

I'm a happy camper, for now. We'll see what surprises Google has for me overnight, even with auto-updates turned off...

 

tommykat1
Community Member

I concur with others: the AirMusic app works too. I can mirror my device and cast to all my speaker groups. Ecstatic! The free market wins!

So that's two workarounds. Wondering if Sonos will go after AirMusic, too...

Note that Sonos won't look good if this goes to court. Their doohickie that compares to Chromecast costs $500 vs $35.00 for the old Chromecast audio dongle. This can be construed as anti-trust monopolistic stuff.

 

c0sm0naught
Community Member

another day with no feedback from Google.

I'm at the end of my phone contract - and have had every major pixel phone since the Pixel 2

 

@GoogleNestTeam - after how you've treated us here, why should I or anyone else keep buying your products?

You dont answer questions, offer any glimpse of hope that these features will return for this instance. So, how do we know this wont happen again with other features/products?

Wheres the trust?

When will you start rebuilding our faith that your products are worth our hard earned money?

Clive
Community Member

Things are getting better with community support (Where is Google?) but my major issue is still controlling the volumes of groups via routines. (The use case here is morning radio/music play to house speaker group in the morning as an alarm)

This whole episode has been a bit of an awakening for me. In hindsight I have quite honestly struggled to get the whole google home eco system working the way I wanted it but I did eventually get it to a place I was fairly happy with only for it to now break. 

I was considering extending my H/W to include nest, Heating controller, cameras etc but the way in which companies like Google can change and remove functionality so that the overall system no longer works or no longer functions as intended has put a stop to that. I will run my existing hardware for as long as Google allow me too but I do not intend to upgrade or replace it. I hope in time there will be a usable community driven speaker system that does no relay on patents, subscription, cloud or provider enforced upgrades.

Time to break from these companies and aim to make things work for the customer.

 

barrymilliken
Community Member

@Clive if its just routines that are your problem its no big deal to adjust each speaker individually. Do it once and unless your group change you are done.

Clive
Community Member

Thanks @barrymilliken. I tried your suggestion early on but it did not work for me.

My speaker groups contain google home, mini and google chrome cast audio devices.

Using the method you suggested I can get good results  when the routine is manually started from the google home app, Intermittent results when the routines are started from speech and nothing if the routines are started as timed events (my use case). 

Have I missed anything?

barrymilliken
Community Member

@Clive My workday routine use the command format "set <devicename> to volume 3.0".

That works for me.

But the other rule that I follow is all names for devices, groups and rooms are one word. No spaces.

fpatou
Community Member

Hello

@barrymilliken

Your solution is of course the one to be used to be an acceptable stable workaround ...

BUT many of user have paires devices and this is not applicable at all to setup the volume for this kind.

This is for me the main topic for such routines managing volume.

 

 

 

DTBoudreau
Community Member

@barrymilliken Your solution didn't work for me.  Do you need to create a distinct routine for each speaker or can I put the commands in sequence in one routine? 

 

For years I had a single routine that fixed the volume to a standard level across the house at 11pm and it's the biggest thing I'm missing as I seem to be able to cast from spotify on my computer to the whole house without issue.

Clive
Community Member

@barrymilliken

In the example where my speaker group contains Speaker A, B and C. Lets say A and B are google minis and C is a chrome cast audio.

I have three routines

set A volume to 2

set B volume to 2

set C volume to 2

Each routine works when run from my phone

Each routine has its own timed event that does not work at all and only works intermittently with started via speech. However I threw caution to the wind and used your exact wording "set <devicename> to volume 3.0" and I can now start the routines via speech each time. The key seems to be the decimal point and zero.

When running as a timed routine however I still get the message "Sorry, I cannot change the volume on this device" in google home logs

barrymilliken
Community Member

@Clive @DTBoudreau 

I have 4 "set volume" actions in my Workday routine.

At 7:10 AM-

The first 2 actions set the volume to 0.5 for 2 devices (brpair and brwifi).

Then i play WQXR radio for 4 hours.

At 7:11 AM-

I set the volume separately to 3.0 for the same two devices.

The whole purpose of this is to supress the annoying public service announcement when the radio starts. Instead I wake up to classical music.

barrymilliken
Community Member

@fpatou It works for me on paired devices.

You could also try referring to the individual devices that make up a pair. But I haven't needed to do that.

Remember: NO SPACES in any device of group name.

DTBoudreau
Community Member

thanks @barrymilliken 

Unfortunately still no dice for me.  One routine with 8 separate commands in it

Set Dining volume to 3.0

Set Kitchen volume to 4.0

etc. 

etc.

No speakers are in pairs nor do they have a space in the name.  The routine it is not set to run on any speaker.  Thought it worked the first time when I ran from the phone but it did not....oh well.

I'm seeing lots of weird inconsistency reported in the experiences we are reporting.  For example I still have a group volume slider when I open Media in the Google Home app.  It doesn't always work and doesn't work as well as it use to but it's still there.  

barrymilliken
Community Member

@DTBoudreau 

The media tab works differently for me.

Befote casting (by voice, routine or from YT music), all speaker pairs, unpaired speakers and groups are listed.

After casting to a group, that group no longer appears in the list, but it's devices do with individual volume sliders.

 

Also be aware of latency issues. Before testing after changes in groups or names, I restart the network and either force stop the home app or reboot my phone. Then wait 10 minutes.

SamInPgh
Community Member

An interesting article on the outlook for Sonos stock price that discusses the patent "situation" vis-a-vis Google.

#PAYSONOS

https://seekingalpha.com/article/4485059-sonos-story-great-company-selling-cheap

Lamont911
Community Member

I am very disappointed. I have several thousand dollars invested in a "Google smart home" and am an IT professional that has been recommending your products... and this is the result. In addition to this there is no granular control of the Google WiFi, which i overlooked based on brand loyalty. And don't forget that the google tv will not play video audio through the nest speakers. Your products seem to quickly be digressing in functionality in a technological market that is becoming more functional. Feeling like i wasted my money. I now have poor expectation of your brand. To be such a large and dominant conglomerate you sure are not leveraging your resources for you consumers nor adding any value. I can't think of one new feature that is innovative. 

Like the hundreds of comments prior to this one, you probably have lost another customer. Sticking to your free offerings going forward unless you ruin Gmail and google.com as well.

New data centers cannot fix this one.

tommykat1
Community Member

Welp, even with auto-update turned off in the Google Home App, the company invaded my privacy in the wee hours, climbed on my phone and reinstalled version 2.47.78.2 dated 12/15/21, and favorite features disappeared again. Fortunately,  the installation package to the 11/21 version I obtained from apkmirror is still in my downloaded files, and it was quick and easy to install again. It appears I will need to play this game a few times a week. Or maybe I will get an old school alarm and turn my phone off at night, lol.

Note on AirMusic: I bought the paid version for $5.99, and it works on my Galaxy phone with Android 12. That said, the fine print states that permissions from Android may be revoked at any time, at which time the app will only work on a rooted phone.

Most important with AirMusic: the volume button doesn't respond! It will only control the volume on the phone itself. Imagine that. I can go to any Nest speaker and say, "Hey Google, turn the volume [up/down] [x]%, and a single speaker will respond. Group commands, will not respond. Also, the only way to control volume on a Chromecast audio dongle is by manually adjusting each device separately. In short, there are no volume controls in AirMusic.

HBZ
Community Member

That's shocking!

They updated an app which is selected to not update!?!!

 

I panicked and checked. My Pixel 4a and Tab s5e are both still on my downgraded version, with "Cast my audio" still available.

 

Phew.

 

For now, at least!

Oasis2011
Community Member

One of the user said : ( "even with auto-update turned off in the Google Home App, the company invaded my privacy in the wee hours, climbed on my phone and reinstalled version 2.47.78.2 dated 12/15/21, and favorite features disappeared again. " )

NO ONE CAN TOUCH MY PHONE ! GO TO HELL GOOGLE

tommykat1
Community Member

Here's another curve. I also have a Galaxy Tab 10 with Android 12, and this was set to auto-update. I leave it on 24/7. Perhaps this also affected my phone. I've switched auto-update off, and will install the November version of Home, and see what happens. Stay tuned...

tommykat1
Community Member

Just occurred to me, another "aha" moment. My Windows Chrome browser updated on startup this morning. I wonder if that may somehow fit in to this picture...? After all, it's all "Google" and "Chrome" stuff on my three devices.

I've taken the Google pill and may need to find an antidote.

Oasis2011
Community Member

Here is Solution..... ( Welp, even with auto-update turned off in the Google Home App, the company invaded my privacy in the wee hours, climbed on my phone and reinstalled version 2.47.78.2 dated 12/15/21, and favorite features disappeared again. ) 

SHUTTING GOOGLE CHROME UPDATE TO!

GOOGLE DONT TOUCH OUR COMPUTER

Nsikakabasisowi
Community Member

I love Goole

 

Nsikakabasisowi
Community Member
  • goole
  • love
  •  
tommykat1
Community Member

The bast@rds did it again! They updated my Galaxy phone overnight with the disabled current version of Google Home, even with auto-updates turned off!!!!

There is some truly ominous sh1t going on here. I'm thinking of contacting a local news station and seeing if there's a scoop for them.

tommykat1
Community Member

They didn't update the app on my Galaxy Tab A. Interestingly, though, it now only shows one speaker group. My phone works fine with the November app, and shows all groups.

Tonight I will turn off my Wi-Fi connection and go into airplane mode. Maybe when I awake and enable the phone, I'll be given a choice to update, save for later or never!

Nrnugteren
Community Member

False advertising indeed as mentioned by others, where only a class suit to refund all speakers seems the correct course.

Here's another example of false advertising, ongoing in support Case ID [0-############1769]:

On your own support page  it states that  'devices with Chromecast built-in' are supported for wireless speaker groups. Nevertheless, my STB with Chromecast built-in misses this feature completely, despite being on a correct firmware version.

Support (Wesley) now claims only TVs with CC b-i are supported, which conflicts with the info on your pages and is therefore misleading (i.e. scamming/stealing money).

The correct approach would be to either fix the issue or update the info, but the amount of money Google would lose on that would be incredible, leading me to believe this won't happen.

I was a huge Google fan since your launch and been so for 2 decades, but you completely lost my trust and customer loyalty.

I am getting myself Sonos products from now on.

 

 

 

Oasis2011
Community Member

EVERYONE THIS GOOGLE B@STARDS SNEAKE YOUR COMPUTER 

1. DO OLDER VERSION OF G. HOME

2. TURN OFF AUTO UPDATE OF APP

3. TURN OFF AUTO UPDATE OF GOOGLE CHROME TOO

( TO USE GROUP CASTING )

HBZ
Community Member

@tommykat1  this is just weird. There must be some logic to these updates.

Luckily my Pixel 4a and Tab s5e are still going strong with the downgraded Home app.

 

Two thoughts:

A. Something I noticed suggests there's a link between devices and the app settings. On my phone, I turned off auto-update for Chrome. Then I've just seen that it's also now switched off on my tablet. I'm pretty certain I've not done that. So, is it possible that you have another device somewhere in the house?

 

B. Ah ha, @tommykat1  I just thought. Samsung Galaxy have their own app store. Check that. Could the Samsung store, NOT the Google Play store be updating the app? Look in the Samsung Market and ensure there's no auto update which might affect Home.

If that fails, you could for now, tell Android not to allow app installs from Chrome , or to block unofficial installs. Those would be clutching at straws, but just a thought. I'd check the Samsung marketplace.

barrymilliken
Community Member

Fyi: Tmobile did a Samsung "security" update on my phone yesterday which included a reboot.

This morning my " workday" routine did not wake me up. I tried some of my other routines. None worked.

I tried the home app on my wife's phone. She has an older model that did not get the update yet. Her routines worked.

So I rebooted.my phone again and now my routines work.  I'm feeling a strong case of Windows 95 deja vu.

nkr1125
Community Member

As of today (11-FEB-2022), looks like Custom Action routines like:

Set Volume on Speaker A to 30%

Set Volume on Speaker B to 40%

has started working. Did Google finally fix the issue? Is there any details regarding the fix???

DTBoudreau
Community Member

@nkr1125 

Do you have each of those commands in their own routine?  Are you on an apple or google device?

I tried this morning and still nothing.

cawauk
Community Member

@DTBoudreau 

Just tested my "volume reset" routine which has a series of commands "set volume of device A to 100%" "set volume of device B to 85%" etc. which now works.

And as someone mentioned previously, "set volume of {speaker pair} to x%" does not work, instead use the simple workaround "set volume of {left speaker name in the pair} to x%" and this will correctly set the volume of both speakers in the pair.

nkr1125
Community Member

@DTBoudreau 

I have multiple Google devices.

I have 1 routine "Morning" with multiple Custom Actions as below:

Set the Volume to 20% on Speaker A

Set the Volume to 30% on Speaker B

Set the Volume to 40% on Speaker C

Set the Volume to 50% on Speaker D

 

I have another separate routine "Night" with similar Custom Actions for each speaker (only the speaker name and volume % are the variables)

 

I noticed it was working last night (after "Night" routine ran) and when I checked the volume levels on each speaker, they were all set correctly. I checked them again after the "Morning" routine ran (had different Volume % for each speaker), they were set correctly again. Looks like its a very recent fix - I did notice a recent Google Home app update on Android; but not sure if the fix was included.

 

I just checked giving a voice command on my phone to "Set Volume to 33% on Speaker A", it got set  to 33% (earlier it was setting my phone media volume to 33%, and speaker volume was not getting set). So looks like Google fixed it somehow.

 

Google Home App Version on my phone is 2.47.78.2

Firmware on my Google Minis is  1.54.27099

snapperheadjoe
Community Member

@DTBoudreau

My Google home app has been on version 2.47.78.2 since 12\16\21.  I just ran my volume routine, several times, that sets volumes on 9 devices from my Tablet as well as one of my Nest Home v1 displays.  The results are the same it just changes the volume on the device the routine is run from for each line on the routine.   Attempting to change the volume via voice command remotely also does the same thing it just changes the volume on the device where you are giving the voice command from.  This is the same behavior that has been going on for weeks since Google hosed up the Volume situation on their devices.

What seems even more baffling to me is that people with the same firmware  and application versions are having different experiences from similar devices.  Is it because Google is rolling out some back-end server infrastructure change across regions and it hasn't hit everywhere yet or some other nefarious under the radar change that Google is doing?  Either way the dark Kingdom doesn't like to share any of this information with their clients.  I'm sure everyone on this thread is heavily invested in their devices so flushing hundreds or thousands of dollars down the drain and moving to Sonos is not a practical solution.

I am in agreement with the multiple posts that ask Google to make things right with Sonos and pay the royalties for whatever intellectual property they have stolen but the likelihood of that happening is zero.  These companies only care about their bottom line they don't care about us as customers we're just dollar bills to them.  Google being the largest and most diverse tech company on the planet doesn't have a lot of incentive to listen to us.  I just hope they find some financial benefit to them to fix this otherwise it will never get fixed.

KasD
Community Member

Well, this sucks..... I have a speaker group of 9 speakers.  All Google Nest brand. And since this update I can only get max 3 of them to work together.... Why the f did I put speakers in my entire home if they're now not working anymore bc of some new feature that pretty  much destroyed the entire functionality??

tommykat1
Community Member

They did it again! SOAB! I deselected auto-update on both Chrome and Google Home on my Samsung devices, and the company still climbed on my phone WITHOUT MY PERMISSION in the wee hours and updated me to their broken and unusable current (December) app! I reinstalled the November version, which works perfectly, as expected and as advertised. 

This is seriously ominous and creepy, and I'm thinking quite illegal.

HBZ
Community Member

@tommykat1

did you try these two things I mentioned, earlier? 

 Samsung Galaxy devices have their own app store. Check that. Could the Samsung store, NOT the Google Play store be updating the app? Look in the Samsung app place and ensure there's no auto-update which might affect either all installed apps or just Home?

If that fails, you could for now, tell Android not to allow app installs from Chrome , or to block unofficial installs. Those would be clutching at straws, but just a thought. It might prevent updates? 

HBZ
Community Member

@tommykat1 

As well as the ideas above. Looking into this, there's additional things to try

1. Tell Samsung app store not to update

2. Log out of that too and disable it if possible 

3. Tell play store to notify you of any updates 

4. Enforce power save on Home, Chrome and Play store so they don't wake up

5. Force shutdown and clear data on play store

tommykat1
Community Member

@HBZ, thanks, I'm trying one thing at a time to see if I can isolate the cause. BTW, I don't have the Samsung Galaxy Store, or any other related Galaxy shopping service, installed.

tommykat1
Community Member

BTW, the overnight update did not happen on my Galaxy Tab A, only my Galaxy phone.

HBZ
Community Member

That makes sense!

Good luck with it!

CuirBear
Community Member

Have tried to go down the downgraded app route - not much success. Mirroring audio is foreign to me; I prefer to just cast.

The Air Music app works very well for me so far. If you've tried it, you will see that it basically casts the same source to multiple speakers simultaneously, bypassing any grouping. I wonder why Google has not looked at this option, or a variation thereof.