Last week— now it’s Google’s turn. The company’s stream Wednesday follows its in August. That event , and the Pixel 4A 5G. They were launched today, along with a new Chromecast and a , 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,, has been leakier than ancient plumbing (or perhaps, , the “leaks” are part of Google’s marketing strategy).
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.
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.
Screenshot by CNET
More bass, value and skinniness seem to be
- 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