Apple acquires song identification app Shazam

Apple acquires song identification app Shazam
LONDON, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 29: The Apple logo is displayed outside company's Regent Street store on September 29, 2016 in London, England. Technology company Apple has announced that Battersea Power Station, a Grade II listed building and former coal-fired power station, is to be its new London headquarters by 2021. The building, which has been unoccupied for decades, is currently undergoing a £9 billion restoration. (Photo by Jack Taylor/Getty Images)

Monday Apple confirmed one of its most expensive takeovers yet with the acquisition of the media identification app Shazam for a sum upwards of $400 million.

Apple confirmed the deal in a statement it provided for online tech site Tech Crunch saying in part, “We are thrilled that Shazam and it’s talented team will be joining Apple. Since the launch of the App Store, Shazam has consistently ranked as one of the most popular apps for iOS.” The app has been a staple in the iOS Store’s top 10.

Until now Apple has been paying a commission to the London based startup behind the app for sending users to its iTunes Store to buy content. According to The Wall Street Journal, this made up a majority of Shazam’s revenue for 2016 and accounted for 10 percent of all digital download sales.

However in recent years, Shazam has become more than just a tool to identify what song is playing on the radio. Its foray into other medias specifically through advertising campaigns and its augmented reality feature launched back in 2015 has helped drive the app to over 1 billion total downloads to date.

The technology allows Shazamable products to be scanned, directing users to more content provided by those companies. For instance, Nike Inc made the infamous logo of the jumping basketball player on it’s new line of Nike Jordan shoes “Shazamable,” so when scanned by the app, users would be able to view other Nike offerings.

It may be this augmented reality feature that finally grabbed Apple’s interest. The feature has been used in magazines and other forms of print media, posters, TV ads and physical products to launch 3D animations and 360 degree videos. It would seem the acquisition could help Apple build on it’s ARKit for developers which it announced in June of this year.