Sonos sued Google over the way Google Home speakers sync up and work together, and Sonos won. Unfortunately, this means your existing speakers will lose a helpful feature, which is never a good thing.
“Due to a recent legal ruling we’re making some changes to how you set up your devices, and the Speaker Group functionality will work moving forward,” said Google in a blog post.
You’ll no longer be able to set the volume on multiple linked Google Home speakers at the same time, so you’ll need to set the volume on each speaker individually. If you use your speakers individually, this shouldn’t be an issue for you. However, if you like to take advantage of syncing your speakers, this will be a rather annoying change.
In its blog post, Google said, “To adjust volume on your speaker groups, you will need to adjust each speaker individually instead of using the group volume controller. You’ll also no longer be able to change your Speaker Group volume using your phone’s physical volume button.”
Additionally, some users will need to use the Device Utility app to get their speakers up and running. Speaker groups containing non-Google Cast-based devices, like JBL or Lenovo, need to be on Cast firmware version 1.52.272222 or higher.
Google says it will “work to minimize any additional changes,” so hopefully, these are the only things that’ll change with the way Google speakers work together, but we’ll have to wait and see. According to the New York Times, the US International Trade Commission ruled that Google violates five Sonos patents relating to smart speakers, so other changes could come as the ruling is sorted out.