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Echo and Music Unlimited - Streaming On Multiple Devices?

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Echo and Music Unlimited - Streaming On Multiple Devices?
« on: July 25, 2019, 02:48:31 pm »
Sorry for the long post, but there's a lot of important detail to cover.

I have an Amazon Music Unlimited Individual subscription.

"The Amazon Music Unlimited Individual Plan allows you to listen to Amazon Music Unlimited titles on all your devices. Streaming is limited to one device at a time."

That's from: https://www.amazon.com/gp/help/customer/display.html?nodeId=GA3WMK9TWFN8PEK8

I am finding that not to be true.

My environment:

  • I have 4 Gen 3 Echo Dots
  • They all have different names: Bed, Living, Shop, Garage
  • Bed and Garage have the same Wake Word - Echo
  • Living and Shop have the same Wake Word - Alexa
  • All devices are located such that the Wake Words can not be overheard by a device with the same Wake Word

The other night I was streaming some Blues music on Living. I went down to the Shop and said...

Me: "Alexa, play blues"
Shop: "Amazon Music is streaming on another device. Would you like to stream from here instead?"
Me: "Yes"
Shop: (Blues music begins to stream on Shop)

A little while later, I went upstairs and found that Living was still streaming the Blues, but it was a different song, so therefore a different stream.

Confused, I went out to the garage.

Me: "Echo, play some Jazz"
Garage: "Streaming Jazz on Amazon Music" (Jazz begins to stream on Garage)

Now I have 3 different streams going on 3 different devices.

I went up to the bedroom and very quietly said...

Me: "Echo, play some soft music"
Bed: "Amazon Music is streaming on another device. Would you like to stream from here instead?"
Me: "Yes"
Bed: "Streaming Soft Music on Amazon Music" (Soft Music begins to stream on Bed)

I swing by the Garage and find that the music has stopped. However, the music on Shop and Living is still on, so I'm still streaming on 3 out of 4 devices with 3 different streams: 2 different Blues streams and 1 Soft Music.

OK, so as weird as that all is, it's get even weirder:

I went back out to the Garage - where the music had stopped when I asked Bed to stream - and whispered "Echo, stop". Of course, nothing happened (other then the Dot's lights) because nothing was playing. I then went up to the bedroom and found that Bed had stopped streaming. Now, you may recall that Garage and Bed have the same Wake Word, but I was 2 stories away, on the opposite side of the house, behind a closed door and whispering when I said "Echo, stop". There is no way that Bed heard the Stop request, yet the streaming stopped.

At that point I was too baffled (and too tired from running up and down the stairs  ;) ) to try anything else.

The bottom line is that I was able to stream on 3 of 4 devices at the same time, but never on all 4. It also seems that commands given to one device were being followed by different devices if the Wake Word was the same.

Pretty strange, eh?

Re: Echo and Music Unlimited - Streaming On Multiple Devices?
« Reply #1 on: July 29, 2019, 02:38:16 pm »
I have 3 within earshot of each other and sometimes experience what you describe. If you say "Alexa, cancel music everywhere" she stops everywhere.

Re: Echo and Music Unlimited - Streaming On Multiple Devices?
« Reply #2 on: July 30, 2019, 03:26:01 pm »
I have 3 within earshot of each other and sometimes experience what you describe. If you say "Alexa, cancel music everywhere" she stops everywhere.

Through further testing I have determined that the "multiple streams" appear to be nothing more than buffered data. Once the currently playing song ends on a device that shouldn't be streaming, that device goes silent. In other words, when Alexa says "Amazon Music is streaming on another device. Would you like to stream from here instead?" and I say "Yes", the stream stops on the other device, but the device's buffer still has some music stored in it, so it keeps playing.

As far as your comment "If you say "Alexa, cancel music everywhere" she stops everywhere", Yes, that is true. However, that is not related to my issue.

My issue is this: Let's say I have 2 devices (D1 and D2) with the same wake word: Alexa. If I start a stream on D1 and then go to D2 - which is way, way out of earshot of D1 - and say "Alexa, stop", D1 will stop streaming. I don't have to say "Alexa, stop everywhere" or "Alexa, stop streaming on D1". All I have to say is "Alexa, stop" to D2 and D1 will stop.

That is not what I would expect. Basically what that means is that I could be playing tunes in my shop and someone else could be upstairs and say "Alexa stop", thereby shutting down my stream. The main reason for my concern (curiosity?) is because I am considering upgrading from the Individual plan to the Family plan so that my wife and I can stream from multiple devices at once. What happens when I say "Alexa, stop" to my device (or worse yet, when she says "Alexa, stop" to hers  ;))? Will both devices stop? I would hope that the instruction would only apply to the device hearing the Wake Word, but that's not what is a happening now.

Re: Echo and Music Unlimited - Streaming On Multiple Devices?
« Reply #3 on: August 08, 2019, 09:13:06 am »
I have had some similar problems but have not really explored it yet.   one thing I did do however is connect some devices together .  example "Alexa play 80's rock down stairs" and just the 2 I have down stairs will play,   same with "upstairs" and Everywhere" that all of them play.   

Perhaps linking the ones you use the most or that she does would help alleviate some of this?   

another thing that is a possibility that I just thought of is the voice recognition thing?  would alexa recognize either of your voices that it would differentiate between the both of you and the streams?