If you have several Google Nest speakers, Chromecast and smart displays, you can add each of them to several different groups in the Google Home app again. The company implemented changes last month, which would allow certain devices to be added to only one speaker group at a time in response to Sonos’ patent lawsuit. This development, announced by the Nest team, undoes that change. If you’ll recall, Sonos sued the company back in 2020, accusing it of infringing on several patents it holds, including ones related to managing groups of speakers.
In May, a California federal jury determined that Google had infringed on Sonos’ intellectual property and ordered the tech giant to pay a $32.5 million fine. However, US District Judge William Alsup has just tossed out the verdict after finding that Sonos’ patents were unenforceable. Alsup ruled that Sonos had improperly linked its multi-room audio patents to a 2006 patent application, which didn’t disclose the actual invention. He also concluded that Sonos didn’t file applications for the patents involved in the lawsuit until 2019, years after Google presented it with a plan to use multi-room audio technology while exploring a collaboration.
Sonos told Reuters that the judge’s ruling was “wrong on both the facts and law” and that it intends to lodge an appeal. Google has decided to roll back its previous changes despite Sonos’ plan, though, which means you “will no longer run into an error when trying to add a device to additional groups.” The update has already started rolling out and is currently making its way to the Home app on Android. Google says the change is also “coming soon” to the Home app on iOS devices.