Google acquires 3D audio startup Dysonics

3D audio startup Dysonics has been quietly acquired by Google. Some employees of Dysonics have joined Google in recent months, and they are now engaged in the R&D of audio hardware at Google. Google has also obtained Dysonics’ intellectual property rights, including some patents for tracking binaural sounds-these patents may come in handy in future iterations of Google’s Pixel buds or other audio wearable devices.

The acquisition took place in December last year and was disclosed in a document recently filed with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. The terms of the transaction are unclear. According to the 2020 PPP loan documents, Dysonics had previously raised an undisclosed amount of funds from Intel Capital and other companies, employing less than 10 people.

Founded in 2011, Dysonics is a branch of the University of California Davis Technology Incubator. The company originally created a motion tracker for headphones, which made it possible to add spatial awareness to off-the-shelf audio wearable devices. Subsequently, Dysonics cooperated with Virgin America to bring surround sound into its in-flight entertainment system, and also developed 3D audio creation software for VR content creators.

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Among the few employees who modified their LinkedIn profile to admit to switching to Google, the profile of co-founder and CTO Robert Dalton Jr. simply wrote that he was developing “audio hardware” for the new employer. Another former Dysonics employee pointed out on LinkedIn that he is now “working in a team to build audio algorithms for Google’s various hardware products.”

Google may use Dysonics employees and technology for future versions of Pixel Buds, which will allow the company to add features such as spatial audio to future products, which already exist on Apple’s AirPods Pro and Max models. In addition, Google may also use the startup’s technology to further enhance the sound of its Nest speakers.

In addition, it is interesting that Dysonics may provide audio power for future Google AR hardware. After keeping a low profile in the AR/VR hardware field for a while, Google’s actions in recent months have shown its renewed interest in AR/VR. Most notably, Google acquired AR glasses manufacturer North in June 2020.


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