A California federal jury has ordered Google to pay Sonos a $32.5 million penalty for violating their patent on grouping speakers for simultaneous audio playback, which Sonos has been doing for years. Earlier versions of Google products, including the Chromecast Audio and Google Home, were found to violate Sonos’ patent, while the jury concluded that a second patent on controlling devices via smartphone or other device was not violated. Sonos had initially sued Google over six patents, but only one was found to have been infringed. Google argued that it had developed its technology independently, and is considering its next moves.
Sonos, for its part, thanked the jury for their validation of the company’s patents on “zone scenes” and reiterated its belief that Google infringes on over 200 of their patents. The lawsuit stems from January 2020 and is part of a larger legal battle between the two companies that includes additional unresolved claims and counter-claims. The legal wrangling is expected to continue in the future and may not be settled for some time.
Update, May 26th 2023, 5:30PM ET: Google has issued a statement on the case.
Update, May 26th 2023, 8:00PM ET: Sonos has added its own statement in response to the jury decision.