Beijing time on January 9 morning news, this week, smart speaker company Sonos formally sued Google to steal its technology. A day later, the head of antitrust in the U.S. House of Representatives invited the company to a public hearing to present its views. The hearing is scheduled for January 17. It will be the fifth part of the House Judiciary Committee’s antitrust investigation into big technology companies such as Google and Facebook.
Since last June, an antitrust panel led by David Ciciline, the chairman of the Judiciary Committee, has invited witnesses and critics from America’s largest technology companies to discuss how lawmakers are responding to the market dominance of big technology companies.
Sonos CEO Patrick Spencer will be joined by PopSockets founder and CEO David Barnett, Tile Vice President and General Counsel Kirsten Daru Daru went to the University of Colorado School of Law for a hearing together. According to a U.S. congressional press release, the committee is likely to invite more witnesses by next Friday.
Over the past six months, lawmakers have invited representatives from Facebook, Google, Amazon, and academics and technology commentators to discuss what steps should be taken to regulate big technology companies. The hearings focused on the impact of technology platforms on journalism and how and why large companies collect user data.
In the lawsuit, Sonos alleged that the tech giant stole Sonos’ multi-room sound technology after working with Google. Sonos describes the technology in a series of patents. The initial goal was to support Sonos speakers to play music through Google’s app, but Sonos said Google stole the speaker design and then launched a lower-priced product to open up the market. Google subsidizes the cost of hardware by collecting data from users. Google disputed the allegations and said it was “disappointed that Sonos is suing instead of continuing genuine negotiations.”