Sonos Enters Patent Infringement Dispute Against Google Over Smart Speaker Tech

Smart speaker maker Sonos Inc. has recently filed a lawsuit against Google, claiming that the search giant has copied its patented home speaker technology.

California-based Sonos is in the business of making high-end home sound systems that users can control with their voice. Although the firm is famous for its quality indoor speakers, it also makes the related accessories, like amplifiers.

Through the Patent Infringement suits filed in the Log Angeles Federal District Court and with the U.S. International Trade Commission, the company is looking for financial damages and a sales ban on Google’s speakers, smartphones, and laptops, in the US market.

Sonos claimed that the features in the Google Home smart speakers infringed upon five of its patents, including technologies that enable their speakers to communicate and synchronize with each other wirelessly. The company further claimed that the scope of Intellectual Property (IP) infringement could be much bigger, potentially beyond the search giant.

Sonos, in a statement, said that Google had been blatantly and knowingly copying its patented technology in creating and selling the audio products under the search giant’s name. It then added that despite the repeated and extensive efforts made by its team over the last few years, Google hadn’t shown any willingness to work with it on a mutually beneficial solution.

Executives at Sonos told the New York Times that they provided Google with a list of around 100 patents found to be used unlawfully. They further told that Amazon’s Echo smart speakers are also believed to be violating a similar number of patents. Nevertheless, the company opted to limit the litigation to the lawsuit it is pursuing against Google because battling against both the tech giants at once would be a risk.

Both Google and Amazon, on their part, have strongly pushed back the Sonos’ accusations. Google said that they are disappointed with Sonos’ move where the smart speaker maker brought these lawsuits rather than continuing negotiations in good faith and that they would battle against these claims and defend them vigorously. On the other side, Amazon’s spokesperson said that the Echo family devices and their multi-room music technology were developed independently by Amazon.

It is predicted that the recently launched lawsuit against Google will only complicate Sonos’ tense partnership with the search giant and Amazon. Besides, in the big picture, the lawsuit may add fuel to the upsurging pressure tech giants are having from competitors. Sonos revealed that after it started asking for patent licensing feeds, Google added new technical caveats to their partnership. However, Congressional staff members discussed having Sonos Chief Executive Officer – Patrick Spence – testify on the matter before the House antitrust subcommittee. For more visit:

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