Apple is set to make its largest acquisition ever as a company with a pending purchase of Beats Music, according to a new report from the Financial Times. Apple is reportedly shelling out a whopping $3.2 billion for Beats Music, which includes the newly launched streaming service, headphones and speakers.
"Apple will acquire Beats' streaming music service, which launched this year, and its audio equipment business, which included its brand of headphones and audio equipment," writes Financial Times. "The Beats management team will report to Mr. Cook, said people familiar with the deal. Apple and Beats declined to comment."
Beats Music, which was founded by music producer Jimmy Iovine and hip-hop rapper/producer Dr. Dre, released its music streaming service app in the App Store in January.
"We’re digital music consumers, too, and have used every service on the scene. But a feeling kept nagging at us — these aren’t actually 'services', they’re 'servers.' Lots of ways to access music, but we noticed they provided little more than access to a catalog — we still found music from trusted human sources, from friends to magazines to DJs," a Beats Music blog post reads. "We wanted to build a music service that combined the freedom of an on-demand subscription service – unlimited, uninterrupted streaming and downloads of tens of millions of songs – but layer on top features that would give you that feeling only music that moves you can give."
According to the Financial Times, the sale will be announced sometime next week.
It will be interesting to see what Apple does with the steaming service, since it launched its own music streaming service last year with iTunes Radio.
“iTunes Radio is an incredible way to listen to personalized radio stations which have been created just for you,” said Eddy Cue, Apple’s senior vice president of Internet Software and Services, in a news release. “It’s the music you love most and the music you’re going to love, and you can easily buy it from the iTunes Store with just one click.”
Unlike iTunes Radio, which is free, Beats Music is $9.99 a month. A feature unveiled with Beats Music is the ability to have music and playlist suggestions based on your mood or location. Answer a few questions such as where you are, what you feel like, who you are with and what type of music you like and Beats Music will curate a playlist for you.
To read the rest of the Financial Time's exclusive report, click here. The Beats Music app is available to download for free from the App Store. It requires iOS 6 or later and is optimized for the iPhone 5.