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Beats buy could broaden Apple's reach

Published on May 10, 2014 6:15 AM
 
An Apple buy-out of hip headphone maker Beats Electronics could expand the iPhone maker's lucrative domain and play into plans for its next big thing, analysts said Friday. -- PHOTO: AFP

SAN FRANCISCO (AFP) - An Apple buy-out of hip headphone maker Beats Electronics could expand the iPhone maker's lucrative domain and play into plans for its next big thing, analysts said Friday.

Apple's reported multi-billion-dollar acquisition of Beats, seemingly confirmed by Beats founder Dr. Dre in a video clip posted to YouTube, could make Apple's coveted gadgets more enticing and broaden its "eco-system" for selling music and other digital content.

Apple and Beats both declined to comment on the reports of a US$3.2 billion (S$3.9 billion) take-over deal but rapper and business mogul Dre boasted in the clip of becoming "the first billionaire from hip-hop." Apple likely sees mobile audio as a growing opportunity and wants to not only Beats' music streaming service also to cash-in on delivering premium listening experiences from earphones or wireless speakers to in-car sound systems, according to analysts.

The premium headphone market in the United States grew 20 per cent last year while sales of wireless speakers more than doubled, according to industry tracker NPD.

 
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