Upcoming changes to Google Nest speaker group controls, device setup following Sonos decision

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Following the U.S. International Trade Commission’s (ITC) ruling favoring Sonos over Google, the Mountain View, Calif.-based tech giant has detailed several changes to its Nest speaker groups. /Home and their setup process.

Google says “a small group of users” will need to use the “Device Utility app” to configure devices and install updates. Below is the full statement from the tech giant:

“A small group of users will need to use the ‘Device Utility’ (DUA) application to complete product installation and updates. You may receive a prompt to download and run DUA, and this will ensure that your device is connected to Wi-Fi and receives the latest software version.

Also, users will have to adjust the volume of each speaker individually instead of using a group volume controller. It is also no longer possible to change the volume of a “group of speakers” from the physical buttons of your smartphone. However, according to Google, you can still do it with just one Google smart speaker.

Google says the functionality should remain the same, except for the volume rocker being disabled when it comes to third-party Assistant-enabled speakers.

Given that these are features I use quite frequently with my Google Home smart speaker setup when listening to music throughout my house, it’s disappointing from a user perspective. Devices affected by this change include Pixel smartphones, Nest Hub, Nest Mini, older Google Home devices, Chromecast and more.

Below is a statement from Google regarding third-party devices:

“Most speaker groups should continue to work as expected, unless you have a speaker group containing other brands of Cast-based devices, like JBL or Lenovo, they should be on version 1.52 .272222 or higher of Cast Firmware Check this article for information on how to find your device’s firmware version or contact your device manufacturer.

In a statement sent to several publications, Google says that while it disagrees with Google’s decision, it “appreciates the International Trade Commission’s approval of our modified designs”, and says it does not does not expect the decision to have an impact on its ability to import or sell these products.

With that in mind, the decision is unlikely to have any future effect on Google’s ability to continue selling or importing its devices worldwide. The tech giant has 60 days to implement these changes according to the ITC, so expect an update to come to Google’s smart speakers in the coming weeks.

You can find Google’s full blog post on the changes to its speakers, here.

Source: Google Via: The New York Times

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