Google Countersues Sonos In Patent Case

Google has countersued Sonos for patent infringement, following Sonos originally filing a patent lawsuit against Google in January. The lawsuit alleges that Sonos is infringing five Google patents covering mesh networking, echo cancellation, DRM, content notifications, and personalized search.

Google’s suit seems to serve a few purposes. One is obviously to countersue Sonos with its own patents. Another is for Google to show how it has been aggrieved after what it sees as helpful support for Sonos’ product development efforts.

“While Google rarely sues other companies for patent infringement, it must assert its intellectual property rights here,” the company says in its lawsuit. It characterizes the work it’s done to provide Google’s music services and Assistant voice assistant technology on Sonos products as “significant assistance in designing, implementing, and testing.”

The Sonos lawsuit filed in January alleged that Google had infringed five patents covering the setup, control, and synchronization of multiroom network speaker systems. Sonos claimed Google had stolen the technology after working with Sonos to integrate Google Play Music and had further insisted on harsh terms for Sonos to include the Google Assistant on its products, including sharing the full Sonos product roadmap for six months, even as Google was developing competing speaker products. Earlier this year, Sonos CEO Patrick Spence testified before the House Antitrust Committee that Google had blocked the company from enabling both Amazon’s Alexa assistant and the Google Assistant from being active at the same time.

Full Content: The Verge

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