US trade panel opens patent probe into Google speakers – Hardware

The US Worldwide Trade Commission stated on Thursday it was launching a patent investigation into specified audio gamers and controllers bought by Google dependent on a grievance by rival smart speaker maker Sonos .

The ITC received a grievance from Sonos previous month alleging that the import of specified audio gamers and controllers and their parts infringe on its patents.

Sonos at the time also filed a patent infringement lawsuit versus Google in US District Court docket in Los Angeles and testified to a Property of Reps antitrust subcommittee about its frustrations with Google.

“Sonos has made misleading statements about our record of functioning alongside one another. Our technologies and units ended up developed independently. We deny their claims vigorously, and will be defending versus them,” Google spokesperson Jose Castaneda stated in a statement on Thursday.

The ITC has in some cases issued orders banning products and solutions from US entry on the grounds they infringe US patents. The menace of these types of bans, recognized as exclusion orders, can be leverage in settlement discussions.

But companies issue to the bans are frequently equipped to maintain importing products and solutions by redesigning them to keep away from using patented technologies.

Sonos spokesperson Erin Pategas stated the firm was pleased that the ITC will look into “all of our claims asserting Google blatantly infringed our intellectual property. We’ll entirely cooperate through the period of the investigation and feel confident about the deserves of our situation.”

The maker of quality residence speaker units has stated Google copied its technologies for connecting alongside one another several speakers throughout partnership discussions. Some Sonos speakers incorporate voice assistant technologies from Google and Amazon.

Google separately sells its individual Nest smart speakers, a lot of of which are much more cost-effective than Sonos speakers and also incorporate Google Assistant technologies and multi-system relationship abilities.

The look for big has disputed Sonos’ infringement claims.

Sonos on Wednesday reported fourth-quarter profits that beat expectations.

Google on Monday stated its components gross sales declined in the fourth quarter from a year in the past.