After swirling rumors that Apple Inc., was eyeing the popular music app, Shazam, it has been confirmed that this isn’t a rumor. This is timely given that Spotify continues to expand its online streaming services. Apple is looking to step up its streaming offerings and the acquisition of a popular identification app indicates that they want to go head to head with the likes of Spotify and similar platforms. If you’ve never used Shazam, all you need to know is that it’s an awesome app that helps people identify a song, a tv show, or advert in a matter of seconds just from an audio sample. Apple users already know that Shazam works with Siri – it has consistently ranked as one of the top apps for iOS. Shazam also comes with image recognition software, indicating that their humble $400 million dollar purchase might be used for a much bigger vision that audio recognition.
Shazam’s image recognition software, similar to it’s audio component, allows you discover content based on snapshots. The app has come a long way from being an SMS text and has been downloaded over 1 billion times. Despite this, Shazam has not been insanely profitable – it operates at or near profitability, which CEO Rich Riley noted makes it a prime target for acquisition. If that was the company’s goal, then they have succeeded. It is unclear at this time whether Shazam will continue to operate after the acquisition or if Apple will integrate it into their own operations.