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Apple 'nears deal' to buy tech unicorn Shazam


The company has a glittering array of partners, including venture capitalists Kleiner Perkins and London's DN Captial, plus content providers Sony Music, Universal Music and Access Industries (owner of Warner Music). The company was valued at $1.02 billion in its last funding round in 2015.

Photo Shazam said last year that it had surpassed a billion mobile downloads.

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TechCrunch first reported on the pending deal.

Apple may be close to acquiring multi-faceted audio-video app Shazam, which lets users identify any song, TV show, film, or advertisement by reviewing a clip. At its simplest, acquiring Shazam could let Apple do something similar with Siri. It made a statutory pre-tax loss of £4 million ($5.3 million) in 2016, which was still a loss but significantly smaller than the £16.6 million loss in FY 2015. It will be interesting to see if Apple plays nice with others or just shuts Shazam down and keeps the tech for their own needs.

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Shazam's music-recognition technology used to be novel, but now it's relatively easy for anyone to replicate that product. Plans to announce the acquisition could change, however. It gained popularity for its ability to recognize music and more through a snippet of sound, and can also identify items such as books and magazines through visual cues picked up through a device's camera. If the acquisition does take place, it will be interesting to see what happens with the Shazam app on iOS as well as Android.

The move would make sense for Apple on a few fronts.

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We'll know more in the coming days.

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