Data-Over-Sound Pioneer Chirp Acquired by Sonos

February 13 2020, 19:20
Founded in 2011 and with a very promising trajectory of industry partnerships and growth,, the British data-over-sound company announced that it was acquired by Sonos, the wireless speaker company from Santa Barbara, California. With this new acquisition, that follows closely on other investments in voice- and edge-processing technologies, Sonos shows serious ambitions to expand its connected ecosystem of smart devices into the smart home and beyond.

Chirp is a company that pioneered data-over-sound technology, creating simple to implement solutions running on Arm and virtually any other embedded platform to enhance device-to-device connectivity and identification. Chirp’s technology provides a software-defined acoustic data transmission solution that substantially lowers the cost for applications such as device provisioning, proximity detection, 2-way acoustic NFC and telemetry in RF-restricted environments.

Chirp has now confirmed that it was acquired by Sonos. When confirming the acquisition, they described it as “the perfect match of wireless technologies and audio.”

“After working together for the last year, we are excited to announce that Chirp has been acquired by Sonos. Since spinning out of research arising from the Computer Science department at University College London in 2011, Chirp has always held firm to a belief that robust, reliable data-over-sound could transform user experiences and bring new possibilities to audio-capable devices.

“Sonos shares this belief, alongside our common passions for engineering excellence, delightful user experience, and investment in advanced research and development.”

Just in November 2019, Sonos announced the acquisition of Snips, a French company that provides embedded voice assistants and interfaces for connected devices that run locally and offline. The acquisition added a talented group of employees and strategic IP to Sonos and enabled the Santa Barbara company to design speech-enabled devices that can operate offline and to market them faster without sacrificing its own brand identity.  Adding Chirp to this equation will enable Sonos to achieve these goals with a clear technology differentiation.

James Nesfield, the CEO of Chirp is now Director of Emerging Technologies at Sonos, and already confirmed on the company’s website that all the development efforts with Chirp’s data-over-sound technology will be focused on Sonos’s own R&D program.

“Having joined Sonos, access to the Chirp developer console will be closing on March 1st, meaning users will no longer be able to download Chirp SDKs after that date. If you are using an SDK which you have already downloaded for hobby or proof-of-concept work you can continue to do so freely.

“We’ve loved seeing developers take our SDKs and apply them to such a wide variety of imaginative application areas. We would like to offer our heartfelt thanks to everyone who has supported us on our mission over the last 9 years,” Chirp states.

To learn more about data-over-sound and the technology developed by Chirp read this article, published in audioXpress.
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