Google, Sonos, Accuse Each Other Of Tech Theft


Take that, Sonos.

Five months after getting hit with a patent infringement case by Sonos, Google is fighting back.

Google has fired off a lawsuit in federal court in blaming the pioneering wireless speaker company for the same behavior the tech giant stands accused of.

The two erstwhile business partners had been working together on a deal that would incorporate Google Play Music onto the Sonos platform.

However, things went south fast when Sonos filed a patent infringement case against Google in federal court in January.

Google only cooperated long enough to gain an understanding of Sonos’ technology, later backing out of the deal, and launching its own wireless speakers that undercut the Santa Barbara-based company on price, Sonos alleged in its lawsuit.

But Google, in its countersuit filed Thursday (June 11), paints a different picture.

Google contends Sonos is using “substantial volumes” of its technology that includes “patented Google innovations in search, software, networking, audio processing, and digital media management and streaming, both in Sonos’ hardware products and in Sonos’ software and service offerings,” according to the complaint filed in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California.

And Google, in addition to lodging its own patent infringement accusations against Sonos, also uses the complaint to defend its own actions that have come under fire from its former collaborator.

“Sonos has made false claims about the companies’ shared work and Google’s technology in the lawsuits that Sonos filed against Google earlier this year,” Google contends in its federal lawsuit. “While Google rarely sues other companies for patent infringement, it must assert its intellectual property rights here.”

Sonos CEO Patrick Spence, in a statement reported by Bloomberg, contends Google’s lawsuit is a simple case of retaliation.

“Instead of simply addressing the merits of our case, and paying us what we’re owed, Google has chosen to use their size and breadth to try and find areas in which they can retaliate,” Spence said.


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