Apple's Beats acquisition nearing completion as more details behind the deal emerge

Beats Music

Apple's rumored $3.2 billion tie-up with Beats Electronics may not have happened as quickly as first reported, but the deal is still happening. As we all continue to scratch our heads as to why exactly Apple would acquire beats, the latest reports circle back to talent — they want Jimmy Iovine and Dr. Dre. According to TechCrunch:

"They want Jimmy and they want Dre," said the source. "He's got fashion and culture completely locked up."

Sure the successful line of headphones and the streaming music service are an added bonus to the potential deal, but adding Iovine and Dre to the Apple team could unlock new potential in the media industry as a whole. Even before launching Beats, the pair have been extremely influential in all realms of media — something that Apple could leverage for new content deals and more in the future.

The deal for Beats sounds like it makes a little more sense now — what do you think of a proposed deal that would bring Iovine and Dre onto Apple as execs?

Source: TechCrunch

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Andrew Martonik

Economist. Android Central editor. Let's talk about mobile things.

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Apple's Beats acquisition nearing completion as more details behind the deal emerge

40 Comments

Why not?? Apple has no diversity within their senior leadership. Say what you want Dre turned himself into a very successful businessman. They will bring a lot to the table culture- wise.

Hiphop is taking over..embrace it! Lol

Dre has come a long way from his Death Row Records days, the man is a solid businessman and one of the best music producers in the industry. Personally I have no problem with Apple giving him executive privileges. I think as Apple fans we should would welcome him collaborating and working at Apple because of his music industry background, and although Beats headphones sound like garbage they are one of the best looking headphones on the market. It would be great for Apple to incorporate some of Beats headphone designs into some of their products.

Great idea. When HTC owned Beats it worked out awesome for them.

Beats is more about branding and image than anything else. Influencial, perhaps. But something tells me Jobs would have never approved of a move to aquire such a superficial company.

"Beats is more about branding and image than anything else. "
So what you're saying is that it's a perfect fit? Apples strong suit is branding and image, that it's a premium product so you should be willing to spend more. With that as your starting point, the HTC connection doesn't make sense as much as Apple and Beats.

The brand isn't what sells apples products. It's the quality the company regularly puts out. I know I can buy apple and get a high quality product.

I am pretty tired of people like u who constantly regurgitate the same washed up Talking Point, "Jobs would have never Approved of that Move"
Steve Jobs my Hero is Dead. (God bless his Soul) and I cried like a Little Bitch when he Passed, but he gave Tim Cook a bit of advice before his Passing.
Now this is Tim Cook Speaking on the Company's Campus,
“Among his last advice he had for me, and for all of you, was to never ask what he would do. ‘Just do what’s right,’” Cook said. Jobs wanted Apple to avoid the trap that Walt Disney Co. (DIS) fell into after the death of its iconic founder, Cook said, where “everyone spent all their time thinking and talking about what Walt would do.” so lets cut the guy some slack and wait and see what the future holds for the Company. They know what we don't & So far Tim have not made and Dumb Purchases that we know of so far. !!

+4. I'm really tired of hearing the Steve wouldn't do this line. Who really knows what Steve would have done.

Sent from the iMore App

"He's got fashion and culture completely locked up."

Hogwash. He may be in tune with a certain culture, but it's not mainstream. Besides, you think hip hop fashion & culture is all the same? Nor is that cachet necessarily transferrable. Will Dre be as influential with the crowd when he's just a cog in the Apple machine? Will the music industry dance with Iovine after he sells out to Apple?

This rumor has smelled fishy from the beginning. I suspect that Financial Times, Re/Code, TechCrunch and others have been played. I believe Apple talked with Beats, but probably about something much more limited in scope than a complete acquisition.

This series of leaks almost certainly originated from the Beats side. All PR benefit to such rumors accrue to Beats and they've now drawn it out to a third week. Apple rarely even talks about acquisitions AFTER the fact, much less while they're still negotiating.

He's in tune with the segment of culture that Apple craves though. The youth. Have you walked a college campus lately? You'll see Beats everywhere.

And Apple stores are full of Beats headphones. But does that "cred" transfer over just because Dre now works for Apple? And what happens if a year from now some other overpriced headphone is the "in" thing?

I'm sure this differs from campus to campus. But in Berkeley I see more iPhones than Beats headphones. Those that do walk around with cans are just as likely to have Grado, Senns, AKGs, etc. No doubt there's a lot of Beats out there, but college kids don't all listen to hip hop with overpowering bass. The main point is young people love Apple gear...if their parents can afford it.

Berkeley is not the norm nor mainstream. It's the exception actually. Wake up and get out of California! And before you reply, retired military here and have traveled the world and lived all over.

mainstream is shopping at walmart and khaki dockers and watching American Idol. Nobody worth being wants to be that. That shit doesn't sell product. Now i'll agree that the what he may not transfer to apple.

Dre will always be influential. But Dre's power is who he is. He's a untouchable rap legend and legendary producer. But if you take the name off and make it beats by apple who knows if anybody wants them.

Apple nor Beats have made any comment. The quotes here are from Tech Crunch.

The only thing that makes sense out of this is music curation from the Beats Music app, but it's still so new I couldn't see Apple acquiring the company just for that. In terms of hardware, as many have said, Beats are merely a fad (and I'm 23 before anyone gives me that "you're old" crap). The headphones, simply, suck. So I don't see Apple acquiring them for that either. And to say Lovine and Dre have fashion and culture "locked up" just seems silly. They could easily exchange that for someone more influential like Lady Gaga or Kanye West or someone who has more fashion and culture wrapped around their fingers at this time. Dre isn't even an influential rapper at the time (Detox will never drop, give it up). Maybe it's to compete with Samsung for collaborating with Jay-Z for his album release and performance in Austin with Kanye West. Just kind of throwing stuff out there now, but..

I'm really not fully buying this and I would LOVE to hear Apple's justification at this point.

Sent from the iMore App

I tried Beats Music and hated it. Very little in the way of customization other than choosing 3 artists you like at initial setup, and no way of going back and changing them. I never heard anything I wanted to hear no matter how I set up the "play this sentence" mode. They had a few bands in the "just for you" section but then all you heard were those bands. A lot of "intro to *band name here* of bands I was quite familiar with and no way I could see of eliminating bands I didn't like. I'll stick with Slacker, Pandora, and iTunes radio for now. It'll be interesting to see what Apple does with Beats Music in the future. Say what you will about the headphones, but you can't deny that they're insanely popular with their target market.

Lady Gaga for fashion influence? What are you smoking? I don't think Apple cares about any type of fashion aspect anyway, other than making beautiful hardware. And F*CK Kanye West. I agree on any expectations of Detox ever coming, but Dre does a lot of work behind the scenes and Lovine is simply a legend in the music industry (then again so is Dre).

I agree that the curation needs work, but off to a good start. I think the "sentence" feature is an interesting way to discover new music and kind of curates a little better with what you're actually in the mood for. However, yes, it needs a lot of work but the partnership could help the Beats app and iTunes Radio. This is what I think will come good of the acquiring deal.

Hardware is a decent plus I guess. "iBeats" being included with new devices sold is a nice plus, but not necessarily a "premium" price I'm willing to pay as most audiophiles will opt to buy other brands anyway.

As as the Gaga and Kanye references, say what you will but they, among others, are big names in the music, fashion and lifestyle culture. I will agree that Dre is iconic and his work behind-the-scenes has been an influential part of not only the hip-hop genre, but music as a whole, however this argument can be made of Nile Rodgers, Rick Rubin, Pharrell, Timbaland, Brian Eno and so on. I think to say that Dre and Lovine have fashion and culture/lifestyle "locked up" is a bit over-the-top when CURRENTLY other artists are more impressionable in that aspect (where my Gaga & Kanye reference came from). As far as MUSIC goes (the article did not highlight this part, so I didn't comment above) I will say Dre is a nice bet.

Guys and Gals at iMore. This isn't Quantum Physics. Iovine and Dr Dre and well connected in the music industry. They have a high margin headphone lineup that will pay off the acquisition price in a few years and they have a solid streaming service with great curation. It just needs to be able to scale.

This isn't difficult to understand. Apple keeps Beats properties as a Filemaker like wholly owned subsidiary and the "beat" goes on.

This is a fantastic move from Apple. Just looking at the picture of the iPhone & the Beats headphones is beauty in itself. All iPhones coming with beats headphones (regardless of their quality) is a statement of class in itself. Apple, creators of the iPod & iTunes looking to reinvent their delivery of music from them to us (subscription based is the new way forward) headed by Dre who is responsible for discovering some of the greatest hip hop artists & producing some of the greatest hip hop music PERIOD. Not to mention the image & marketing potential. I mean really is it that difficult to see that, I mean really. Beats headphones are everywhere & worn by some of the biggest names in entertainment & Apple are gonna pay a measley (by their bank balance standards) 3.2 Billion to own this & place the iPhone/iPad/iPod Touch alongside them. Open your eyes please it's really not that difficult.

I'm pretty sure Apple has a plan and knows what they are doing with this. I have no doubt this will be good for Apple. If not, whats the big deal? It shows they are still looking to expand which is good. As for Dre, hats off to him. He built his empire and you can't take anything away from that.

I think its a good thing. Beats aren't the best headphones out & iPhone isn't necessarily the best phone out there but people love both & they work well for the people that love them. Opinions are subjective...what isn't is the amount of sales Beats headphones & the iPhone have produced separately. Why not bring them together?

The Beats deal would fix a hole in Apple's product line. They have the iPod, iTunes, iTunes Radio, Podcasts… but no headphones? I've always thought it was odd that Apple sells the music and the device you use to listen to the music, yet leaves out the most important part. iPod and iTunes are dying, Beats can help them.

Sent from the iMore App

Yes, but they are limited. If you want over-ear headphones or if they don't don't fit comfortably in your ears, you will have to buy other headphones. If you don't like the sound of the EarPods or if they break, you have to buy other headphones. Plus, Apple could allow you to bundle and upgrade to Beats. If you buy an iPhone, you can get the regular Apple earbuds for free, or you could pay $50 to get Beats. Consumers will save money by buying two products together while Apple makes money off of two purchases. Also, Beats makes speakers and audio drivers. One of the weaknesses of the iPhone is poor speaker quality. It isn't horrible, but it could certainly be improved. Add that to the talent and brand recognition that Beats brings and it looks like a perfect deal. In my opinion, Beats brings a lot more potential profits and markets for Apple to exploit.

Sent from the iMore App

I see no problem here, I'm sure Apple knows what it's doing. But for the love of God, please don't EVER incorporate Beats Audio into the Mac lineup.

So buying Beats for it's successful line of headphones or for the music streaming which Apple doesn't have makes no sense. Paying $3.2 billion for two executives, now that makes sense?

Sent from the iMore App

The headphones are junk and Apple knows it. What they are buying is the beats music streaming service and more importantly, Jimmy Iovine. His connections with all things media will definitely help Apple with contract negotiations with all music, movie, and TV studios to acquire the rights to sell and stream content. Why do you think the cable companies are trying to buy the content creators? They need something to sell us before we all cut the cord and stream everything from the net. Once again, Apple thinks bigger then everyone else. As a shareholder, my only concern is ultimately, is this deal worth 3.2 Billion? It may turn out that Apple is getting a bargain.

My question is why is one article speaking on the issue as fact and the other explicitly referring to it as a rumor?

If the answer is that it semantically remains a rumor until announced, then the word "rumor" should have been somewhere in this article and every other article on the topic.

I'm not just nitpicking. It's confusing and problematic - among the reasons that modern journalism has a shaky rep.

Aesthetically I love the design of Beats, but from a hardware and sound perspective I find it quite lacking. If Apple buys out Beats I would love to see a high-quality pair of Beats get manufactured that would definitely get me to sink my hard earned greenbacks on those cans.

Also, it makes sense for Apple to acquire Beats because of the music streaming experience, an upgrade to iTunes radio and possibly iTunes would be awesome!

Apple wants Jimmy because he took the idea of Dr. Dre and turned into Beats--and then Beats music. Don't forget, Beats music is not an original platform. Too lazy to research the name, but they did buy out a company, and then edited and made it Beats music. I think Apple realized the business sense in the upper rankings of "Beats" and decided to make a move, before beats took it one step further. The worst possible scenario was Beats being in-tune and figuring out how to build the next great iTunes or the next great iPod--that would've killed Apple, considering Dre and Iovine.

I think it's a gamble for apple because the coolness of Dre may disappear if they muck with the Beats by Dre brand. Apple is corporate, semi-nerdy, though Jobs helped that. Without him it's coolness is kinda meh. Not that Apple products are declining, most still have the designs from when jobs was around so time will tell.

But i think selling speakers and headphones is a good market for apple. and it's something they don't have right now. Not to mention apple headphones go in the garbage right now so anything is an improvement.

Dre is smart. He surrounds himself with cool people and puts his products in the hands of cool people. Athletes, actors, singers from around the world. That's what most people want to be like. And it's hard for the tech world to appeal to those sorts of people. But will beats transfer? I'm not certain about that. To me it's like the Nike buying Armani. If you take off Armani and put on Nike on all the suits will that doesn't help the brand. Hell it's like in reality when Nike bought Cole Haan shoes. Cole Haan had a great rep for high quality shoes and Nike bought them and popularity and quality of the shoes tanked.

For Dre it's great. take the cash, get paid, If apple tanks Beats you make a new company and still sell headphones with celebrity marketing.

Oh on the speaker thing i could see lines of speakers with airplay integrated, beats recording equipment like mics for podcast recording, gaming headsets, computer speakers like studio monitors.