Sonos boss testifies on ‘market distortion’ of Google and Amazon


Sonos CEO Patrick Spence testified before the US House’s Antitrust, Commercial and Administrative Law Subcommittee on Friday (17 January) about the company’s complaints against Google and Amazon. You can read his full written testimony here, in a document published by the House.

“I’m gravely concerned that the market conditions that allowed Sonos to innovate and thrive — and many smaller companies like us — are endangered by the rise of a small group of companies with unprecedented size, scale, and dominance,” said Spence in his introduction. He would also claim that big technology companies “have come to use the scope of their platforms and their overwhelming dominance in certain markets to unfairly disadvantage competitors and squelch potential competition”, and talked about Google and Amazon’s willingness to subsidise the price of their smart speakers in order to dominate the market. “That kind of market distortion — the leveraging of profits from one dominant platform to subsidize the conquest of another that poses a potential competitive threat in the future — may benefit consumers in the short-term through lower prices. But it’s terrible for the innovative dynamic created by robust and fair competition because it hamstrings those companies that have better products that cannot be sold at a loss,” claimed Spence. You can read his arguments at length in the full document.

Written by: Stuart Dredge