Apple reportedly buying Beats Electronics

In a somewhat surprising move, Apple is rumored to be in talks with Jimmy Iovine and Dr. Dre’s Beats Electronics that could see the audio accessories and music streaming service acquired for $3.2 billion.

Under the supposed deal, Apple would gain control of Beats’ audio hardware division as well as the firm’s subscription-based music streaming service. The Beats management team would report to Apple CEO Tim Cook.

This is getting interesting.



  • http://peterscott.ws/ Peter Scott

    I was hoping for a ‘nope’.

    Don’t see how this would make sense for Apple.

    • John V.

      When Jony Ive resigns before next WWDC it’ll start making more sense.

      • rogifan

        Resigning because of this acquisition?

  • http://tewha.net/ Steven Fisher

    Since when do we trust The Financial Times with something like this? Unless you have some inside info they don’t have?

    • http://www.engadget.com/ Jon Fingas

      Well, the NYT, Bloomberg, Recode and the WSJ all have sources saying the same thing now… I’m surprised Jim hasn’t responded with a “yep” or “nope” yet!

      • http://tewha.net/ Steven Fisher

        I can’t read WSJ or NYT, but Bloomberg and Recode both seem to be relying on FT as their source.

  • Jason

    let’s read between the lines here, Itunes is not cutting it…

    • 11thIndian

      Yup. The number 1 moneymaker in digital music isn’t cutting it. Hyperbole away…!

      • Jason

        so why are we buying Beats? for the headphones? shits and giggles?

        • James Hughes

          Or it’s just a rumor??

  • dreyfus2

    What a terrible rumor, hope that is not true. Everything they make is crap, and the subscription service is certainly something Apple could pull off alone… Beats’ contracts with the labels are most likely not transferable anyhow.

    But maybe that gold iPhone bought them more street cred than they can swallow :-(

  • willo

    I´m guessing this has nothing to do with headphones, and all about licensing/exclusivity. Beats Music will be the ultimate streaming service, and I´m sure it will support music videos soon. I think Apple will keep the brand name Beats Music, and use it as a streaming service. Maybe they´ll even go into Android with it.

    • rattyuk

      Save the licensing deals probably expire if sold.

  • stsk

    Regardless of what I think about their headphones (they suck) and streaming music (it sucks), Apple has never been known to pay more than necessary for a company. Beats had a financing round 4 months ago which valued it at about a billion. We’re supposed to believe that the last 4 months have seen a value increase of 3X?

    Preposterous.

  • SDR97

    If this turns out to be true, I think it will mark the exact moment we look back to in hindsight and say, yeah. We should have seen the writing on the wall for Apple’s decline.

    This move at this price makes absolutely no sense at all. Yahoo? Sure. Dropbox? Absolutely. Wolfram Alpha? Hurrah!

    But Beats? Really?? Cut the price 90% and I still wouldn’t see the value.

    • rogifan

      Take out Yahoo and I’d agree with you. Removed Alibaba and Yahoo Japan and the rest of the company is worthless.

      • SDR97

        Right, but Yahoo would at least make sense to me as a strategic move in an important market where they need to grow their presence, with some ancillary benefits (Yahoo still gets a ton of traffic). I just don’t get the beats thing. If Apple is looking to become a headphones and medical devices company, I think they’re losing their way.

        • dreyfus2

          Almost nothing sounds as “headphones and medical” as Dr. Dre though… :-)

          • SDR97

            LOL! Well played, my friend.

  • taitaisanchez

    If you love beats you know nothing about headphones. If you hate beats, you really don’t know anything about headphones.

    For all their technical flaws, half the reason why beats keep selling is that for most kinds of audio, bass heavy music, they sound decent. Half of it IS braaaaaaaaand. Or a reasonable portion thereof.

    Still, EarPods have decent response, but not great. I think Apple is looking to double down on making decent headphones. I’m thinking this might be EarPods 2.0. Apple has had a history of making in ear headphones too, in addition to that iPod hifi thing. Apple getting into the personal audio biz makes a lot of sense from a priorities perspective.

  • John

    Nada. Nope. Not buying it.

    And neither is Apple.

    • John

      I was dead wrong. Filet o’ crow to go please?

  • Jürgen Pöschel

    If this is going to happen, then this would be the first time

    that I am seriously worried about Apple

    since the death of SJ. It’s contrary to everything Apple has done in recent years.

  • marcintosh

    Because what Apple really needs is a couple dozen more products in it’s lineup in dozens of different colors. That totally sounds like something they’d do.

    It would make as much sense for them to just buy Dr. Dre.

  • tylernol

    ick.

  • http://twitter.com/matthewwanderer Matthew

    Is this about brand and the (youth) category? Beats hardware looks good, but it doesn’t reflect Apple’s passion for quality.

    That’s my initial take, particularly after catching up on Angela Ahrendts’s videos where she talks about how she reinvented Burberry. Apple’s clearly paying very close attention to this customer category at the moment. Beats makes sense in this context, but not at the rumored valuation.

    I’ve rarely (I can’t recall the last time, in fact) objected to a move Apple has made on this level, but this development has me concerned (as a s/h and fan).