Google snaps up streaming music service to hit back at Apple
The entire country is busy watching America’s rebels take on the Belgium Red Devils at World Cup, but while everyone else is focused on the football pitch, Google is busy readying its plans to take on Beats Music with a music service acquisition of its own.
Songza, a music streaming service that specializes in finding the right music to fit your mood – kind of like Beats’ Sentence feature – announced that is has been scooped up by the folks at Google.
“Today, we’re thrilled to announce that we’re becoming part of Google. We can’t think of a better company to join in our quest to provide the perfect soundtrack for everything you do.”
The company says there are no current plans to change Songza – other than making it faster, smarter and more fun – but you can bet we’ll see the company’s smart playlist creation tools pop up on Google Music and maybe even YouTube within the coming months.
Apple dished out over $3 billion for Beats Music and its lucrative headphone business but details on the Google/Songza deal have not yet been disclosed. It’s unlikely that Google paid anywhere near $1 billion for Songza though as reports earlier this month claimed the company was only asking for a paltry $15 million.
Google Music already has a radio feature that generates playlists like iTunes Radio, Pandora, Spotify and others, but Songza brings a more human element to music curation, by offering up hand-picked mixes that are curated by actual people to meet your mood. Beats Music received praise for playlists created by top artists and editors form Pitchfork and XXL when it launched earlier this year. Songza on the other hand, has been doing the same thing since 2010 – before it even had an iOS app.
Google’s ties to Songza go back to 2012 when the company’s VP of retail sales John McAteer, invested $1.5 million in the company independently, but it looks like Google is finally ready to embrace the role humans, not algorithms, are destined to play in the future of music streaming.