Tag: audio

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Pixel 5, Chromecast with Google TV, Nest Audio: All of today’s Google announcements

Chromecast with Google TV

Juan Garzon/CNET

Last week Amazon dropped its annual armada of new products on us — now it’s Google’s turn. The company’s Launch Night In stream Wednesday follows its unveiling of the Pixel 4A budget phone in August. That event confirmed the existence of its next flagship phone, the Pixel 5, and the Pixel 4A 5G. They were launched today, along with a new Chromecast and a new Nest-branded smart speaker, the Nest Audio. There were few surprises, however, other than the Hold for Me phone feature, which puts those awful you’re-on-hold-forever calls in Google Assistant’s hands.

The Pixel 5 announcement, as with Google’s previous flagship phones, has been leakier than ancient plumbing (or perhaps, as CNET’s Lynn La suspects, the “leaks” are part of Google’s marketing strategy).

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Everything just announced at Google’s Pixel 5 event



Google’s latest flagship adds 5G support to Google’s rota, and it went live on Google’s store before the announcement. It starts at $699 (£599, AU$999). The camera adds Portrait LIght and Night Sight in portrait to the camera. And with the new phone, Google’s added a big bundle of services called Google One, a la Apple One.

Read our Pixel 5 first take.

Chris Monroe/CNET

The $50 (£60, AU$99) updated Chromecast has a new remote with an Assistant button, plus dedicated buttons for high-profile streaming services. “A more helpful TV” is Google’s tagline for Google TV, which seems to be Android TV: The Next Generation. It updates the recommendation engine and delivers better search results, plus aggregates your streaming subscriptions. 

Read our Chromecast with Google TV hands-on first take.

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Sonos sues Google again for allegedly copying wireless audio tech

Sonos Move
  • Sonos has sued Google again for allegedly copying wireless audio technology.
  • Nest and Chromecast devices supposedly violate five wireless audio patents.
  • It’s meant to show t he “depth and breadth of Google’s copying.”

Sonos isn’t stopping at one lawsuit against Google for allegedly copying speaker technology. The Verge reports that Sonos is suing Google again, claiming the internet giant is violating five wireless audio patents.

The suit asserts that the entire Nest and Chromecast lineups are using Sonos tech that includes phone-based streaming music control, speaker groups, and automatic EQ. Sonos felt it vital to sue again to underscore the “depth and breadth of Google’s copying,” according to legal chief Eddie Lazarus.

Google spokesperson Jose Castaneda promised that the company would fight the new lawsuit. He maintained that Google’s products had been “designed independently” and that his employer would deny the claims “vigorously.” Google countersued Sonos over the first case in June, using a common strategy to force a quick end to a legal battle.

Related: The best smart speaker you can buy

Sonos has frequently complained about the power of companies like Google and Amazon to reportedly swipe technology and dictate unforgiving terms. It went so far as to accuse them of knowingly violating patents on the assumption that the cost of any legal disputes would be trivial compared to the profits from smart speakers.

The company believes that “most people” in the wireless home audio space violate Sonos patents, Lazarus said. Suing Google was a “last resort” when discussions fail.

The lawsuit doesn’t mean Sonos has given up on Google integration. It wants a “positive relationship” with Google, according to Lazarus. However, it still wants Google to pay — we wouldn’t expect the two to warm to each other unless there’s a mutually agreeable settlement. Nest and Chromecast