Shazam! Apple is buying the British software company behind the popular music tagging and recognition app. TechCrunch first reported the deal as likely happening last Friday, and today the company officially confirmed the acquisition to Buzzfeed. and the Financial Times.
“We are thrilled that Shazam and its talented team will be joining Apple,” Apple spokesperson Tom Neumayr said in a statement to BuzzFeed News. “Since the launch of the App Store, Shazam has consistently ranked as one of the most popular apps for iOS. Today, it’s used by hundreds of millions of people around the world, across multiple platforms.”
“Apple Music and Shazam are a natural fit, sharing a passion for music discovery and delivering great music experiences to our users,” Neumayr continued. “We have exciting plans in store, and we look forward to combining with Shazam upon approval of today’s agreement.”
Shazam’s music recognition feature is already integrated with Apple’s Siri voice assistant. For example, you can invoke Siri on an iPhone, iPad, or Mac (sorry, Apple Watch) and identify playing music by asking what song is playing.
Siri briefly automatically recognized playing music using Shazam, but the feature was quickly changed to only work when the user actually asks what song is playing. It’s unclear if this was for privacy reasons or as part of their licensing agreement, but it would be fantastic to see automatic song tagging return as part of this acquisition.
Shazam’s media recognition technology could also be integrated deeper in Apple’s software and services in the future. The deal is expected to be worth around $400 million.
As for Shazam’s apps on Android and other platforms, we’ve reached out to the company to ask about the fate of those clients. Following Apple’s Beats Music acquisition, the company maintained its Android client then released Apple Music for Android so it’s not unlikely that could happen here as well.