Media

Apple to buy Beats Electronics for $3.2B, report says

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Apple is reportedly finalizing a deal to acquire Beats Electronics for a whopping $3.2 billion.

The deal will supposedly be announced next week, according to the Financial Times, who first reported news of the rumored acquisition. If true, the deal would be the largest acquisition in Apple’s history. It would also mark a huge change in strategy for Apple, which has traditionally stayed away from high-dollar acquisitions.

Some details of the deal are still in the works, according to FT’s sources, which means the talks could still fall apart. What we do know is that Apple would take control of Beats’ hardware business (including its signature headphones) and its relatively new streaming-music service, Beats Music.

While a billion-dollar acquisition would be out of character for Apple, the company could certainly afford it. (Apple has billions in cash and cash equivalents that it isn’t doing anything with.) But more than that, buying Beats seems like a very odd move for Apple — especially since iPhone maker already has the means to produce quality audio hardware as well as its own streaming music service, iTunes Radio.

A few past reports do lend credibility to Apple buying Beats. For instance, Beats founder Jimmy Iovine has previously gone on record about how he prodded Apple founder Steve Jobs to launch an Apple music service. Additionally, Beats was rumored to be considering a partnership with Apple to launch Beats Music just last year.

As for Beats, the company was rumored to be pursuing a major new round of funding worth $60 million to $100 million, as VentureBeat previously reported. (Beats is said to need the additional funds to stay competitive with leading on-demand music service Spotify, which it competes with directly in the streaming realm.) That’s on top of the $60 million raise that Beats closed a little over a year ago.

VentureBeat is reaching out to both Apple and Beats for further comment and will update this post with any new information we learn.

More information:

Apple designs and markets consumer electronics, computer software, and personal computers. The company's best-known hardware products include the Macintosh line of computers, the iPod, the iPhone and the iPad. Apple software includes t... read more »

Beats Music is a music streaming service spun out of Beats Electronics and into its own company in early 2013. The core experience will be centered around curated playlists created by musicians and music writers. It is currently in pri... read more »

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92 comments
Kevin Wayne Peterson
Kevin Wayne Peterson

garbage service too....all around bad company. Ive worked for them before.

Jeremy Hermanns
Jeremy Hermanns

Apple must be in A LOT of trouble if they feel compelled to buy a BRAND and not a technology....

John Canning
John Canning

ata boy Ian C Rogers...you deserve it bub!

John Byrne
John Byrne

Can they spend some $$ fixing there products first

Alexander Stewart
Alexander Stewart

Their DAC is really good on mobile phones, can't even lie. My 8X still outputs excellent quality.

Sergiy Zhuk
Sergiy Zhuk

wtf did they do it ? It's extremely overrated and overpriced

Joshua Dubissette
Joshua Dubissette

hope its jus a rumor though.. better leave my fav. headphones alone

Lafayette Howell
Lafayette Howell

I shared the news with my 12 yr old son, and his reply, "why is Apple doing this" #smartkid

Kieran Dunne
Kieran Dunne

meh, disagree. at least when compared to the likes of google and fb

Kevin Green
Kevin Green

Pretty sure I know, chief. Maybe we have different definitions. I prefer not to be so narrow.

Marc Mealy
Marc Mealy

3 billion is chump change for apple. Plus beats was already taken over by a private equity firm, which after stripping out a ton of cash, loading it up with debt and spending big on advertising, now they are the big winners and cashing out a 2nd time.

Nick Donnelly
Nick Donnelly

Actually it objectively broke sound on the HTC. Beats ups the bass & treble - thus distorting the sound from what the musician intended. What makes this far worse - is that when you turn it 'off' in the HTC settings, it actually drops the bass & treble *below* the flat settings. This tricks you into thinking it 'makes it sound better'. The sound you want - is a flat neutral sound - as the artist intended. Not only are you getting worse, distorted sound (that might sound higher impact to naive ears) - you can't turn it off to get a proper flat sound. Look this up. If you want worse sound - go for beats.

Cory Weston
Cory Weston

Beats is probably the only one willing to sell and Apple is probably only interested in Beats Music.

Brn Vntl
Brn Vntl

Bowers and Wilkins would've been far cheaper and made their products seem much more premium

Brn Vntl
Brn Vntl

I swear to jeebus if there is a big dumb beats logo on the next gen MacBook Pro I may consider another computer

John Oik Smith
John Oik Smith

No, the start button is stuck. Gonna take out the knife, have warranty, great product, or was.

Mahwish Humayun Khan
Mahwish Humayun Khan

No way!!!!!! Do you have warranty? What did you do to them? Dropped them I'm sure

John Oik Smith
John Oik Smith

My beats pill stopped working. Mahwish Humayun Khan

Ta Wil
Ta Wil

What not enough things to acquire,since Steve died they can't seem to invent anything or create anything but feel the need to steal and buy $hit!

Vincent Raja
Vincent Raja

Ya Read few hours before:) actually i planned to buy Beats Solo next month. Shocking :P

Sampath Kumar
Sampath Kumar

Robin Son Karthikeyan Sunderraj Vincent Raja Chakkravarthy Raghavan

James Parashos
James Parashos

They should spend more money Making a KILLER iPhone 6 and beating samsung than spending a fortune else where.

James Parashos
James Parashos

Too bad beats are over priced rubbish when there's better quality out there for cheaper prices.

Enrico Yoshinaga
Enrico Yoshinaga

financially speaking, Beats sounds nice deal for shareholders (a cash cow). Technologically speaking, they bought serious garbage.

Karan Sthi
Karan Sthi

too bad one can only like your comment once

Rafael Rivera
Rafael Rivera

sounds like a dumb move, but what do i know about electronics!

Pavel Markin
Pavel Markin

I personally really enjoy Beats Audio on my HTC One. At least we know now what next IPhone will get.

James Connell
James Connell

Apple is clearly buying beats because of their music subscription service. Their head phones are junk with marketing hoopla. No real engineer in a recording studio would use them.