Apple Buys Shazam In $400 Million Acquisition

Shazam logo cover

According to Bloomberg reports, Apple Inc. has agreed to purchase music-identification service Shazam.

But behind the nifty song-detecting technology lies something that could explain why Apple is buying Shazam for a reported sum of $400 million - its treasure trove of data. Downloaded over a billion times since its launch in 1999, the London-based company peaked at more than 100 million active monthly users. Bloomberg is reporting that a new paid music service, tentatively titled Remix could be ready to launch as soon as March and feature Spotify-style on-demand music streaming alongside obvious tie-ins to its current music video dominance. Apple Music and Shazam are a natural fit, sharing a passion for music discovery and delivering great music experiences to our users.

A Shazam spokesperson was quick to point out the company's excitement to be working with Apple and continue "delivering magic" to its user base.

Apple has made no secret about its ambitions in the AR space, with CEO Tim Cook describing the technology as more profound than virtual reality (VR). Its app has a single goal: identify a song that's playing and connect users to a service to download or stream it. Longer-term, Apple could ditch the app altogether, and put Shazam's services directly into Siri, so that it can extend the platform across all of its different operating systems.

Music has always been a major part of Apple's business.

Apple did not elaborate on its plans, but the company will not be able to make any major changes to Shazam until it secures regulatory approval.

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Shazam could also be a key weapon for Apple as it enters the voice-enabled device market with its HomePod - whose release is already delayed until after the winter holidays, robbing Apple of a key opportunity to compete with Amazon and Google for the connected home.

Apple, which now generates more than half of its revenue from the sales of iPhone devices, needs to explore another revenue stream to reduce its reliance on iPhone.

While it is known for song recognition capabilities, helping users identify unfamiliar songs, the app has also been building AR features.

By prioritizing Apple Music, the company could better position itself to take advantage of a fast-growing market while simultaneously giving customers more reasons to keep buying its products.

Snapchat and Spotify have referral deals with Shazam and it has yet to be seen if they will continue under Apple ownership.

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