Apple confirms deal to buy music discovery app Shazam

Isaac Cain
December 14, 2017

However in recent years, Shazam has become more than just a tool to identify what song is playing on the radio.

In a statement, Apple spokesman Tom Neumayr said Shazam 'is used by hundreds of millions of people around the world, across multiple platforms.

"The hold-up-your-phone-in-the-bar use case for Shazam requires one particular type of fingerprint, whereas comparing two mp3 files for a service like iTunes Match is not about a quick lookup of a song excerpt, but about speed and accuracy against the entire song at once", an executive at one of Apple's many data providers tells Billboard, speaking under the condition of anonymity.

But with growing competition between Apple Music and Spotify - which also ties into Shazam - Apple may have felt the need to secure the service rather than risk its Swedish rival or some other company buying it first.

Leaving aside the very real possibility that Apple splashed out purely to create the portmanteau name ShazApple, music discovery may still be at its core.

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The Cupertino, California, company declined to say whether Shazam's app will still be available after the deal closes.

The acquisition cost Apple a hefty $400 million price tag. "We have exciting plans in store, and we look forward to combining with Shazam upon approval of today's agreement". Apple is lagging behind its big rivals when it comes to smart speakers and digital assistants. For instance, Apple Music could monitor Shazam activity around certain songs and artists before they are even added to the streaming service.

Since the start of iTunes back in 2001, Apple has been keen on dominating the world of digital music and has made substantial investments in the quest to remain relevant.

In fact, Tencent and its music division will acquire a minority stake in Spotify from current investors, while Spotify will get a piece of Tencent Music, the companies said last week.

Apple Inc on Monday confirmed it had reached a deal to acquire Shazam Entertainment Ltd, the United Kingdom -based app that lets users identify songs by pointing a smart phone at the audio source.

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