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Google hits back at Sonos in patent fight with a countersuit

Sonos One Lifestyle Black
Sonos One Lifestyle Black (Image credit: Sonos)

What you need to know

  • Google is countersuing Sonos on patent infringement.
  • This comes months after Sonos initially sued Google and Amazon.
  • Alleged intellectual property violations include mesh networking, Sonos' strong suit.

After half a year of being portrayed as a bully against the smaller Sonos, Google has decided to fight back with a countersuit against the connected speaker company. According to an article from The Verge, Google filed a lawsuit claiming that Sonos has infringed on several of its patents and intellectual property, including mesh networking, echo cancellation, digital rights management (DRM), content notifications, and personalized search. This lawsuit goes up against the one that Sonos filed in January, alledging that Google infringed on a several of its patents, including multiroom speaker connectivity.

Sonos was founded in 2002, and has earned a loyal following thanks in large part to its audiophile-quality speakers and whole-home connectivity, as well as the fact that its products work with dozens of music and audio services, and both Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa voice assistants. Google, on the other hand, introduced its first connected smart speaker, the Google Home, in 2016, and only later built-in mesh networking to connect its smart speakers.

Google claims that this move is defensive in nature, and that it is reluctantly engaging in proactive litigation of their own to demonstrate the work that it has accomplished in the areas mentioned above. It is unclear what will come of these lawsuits or when, if ever, they might be resolved, particularly in light of COVID-19 restrictions. Regardless, we will continue following the story as it develops, and will provide updates as they are unveiled.

Jeramy is proud to help *Keep Austin Weird* and loves hiking in the hill country of central Texas with a breakfast taco in each hand. When he's not writing about smart home gadgets and wearables, he's defending his relationship with his smart voice assistants to his family. You can follow him on Twitter at @jeramyutgw.