According to foreign media, 3D audio Dysonics has been quietly acquired by Google.A number of Dysonics employees have joined Google in recent months, and they are now working on audio hardware development at Google.Google has also acquired the DySonics intellectual property, including some patents for tracking binaural sound -- patents that could come in handy in future iterations of Google's Pixel Buds, or other audio wearables.
The acquisition took place in December and was disclosed in a recent filing with the US Patent and Trademark Office.Terms of the deal were not immediately known.Dysonics previously raised an undisclosed sum of money from Intel Capital and other companies and employed fewer than 10 people, according to the 2020 PPP loan documents.
Dysonics was founded in 2011 as a division of the University of California, Davis Technology Incubator.The company initially built an activity tracker for headphones, which made it possible to add spatial awareness to off-the-shelf audio wearables.Dysonics subsequently partnered with Virgin America to bring surround sound to its in-flight entertainment system and also developed 3D audio authoring software for VR content creators.
Among the few employees who changed their LinkedIn profiles to acknowledge the move to Google, co-founder and CTO Robert Dalton Jr.His profile simply states that he is developing "audio hardware" for his new employer.Another former Dysonics employee noted on LinkedIn that he now "works on a team building audio algorithms for Google's various hardware products."
Google is likely to use Dysonics staff and technology for future versions of Pixel Buds, which would allow the company to add features like spatial audio to future products, the latter of which already exists in Apple's AirPods Pro and Max models.It's also possible that Google will use the startup's technology to further enhance the sound of its Nest speakers.
In addition, it is of interest that Dysonics has the potential to power audio for future Google AR hardware.After a period of low profile in the AR/VR hardware space, Google's moves in recent months indicate its renewed interest in AR/VR.Most notably, Google acquired AR eyewear maker North in June 2020.