updated 07:35 pm EDT, Wed April 4, 2012
Beats looks into subs but won't confirm MOG deal
Beats Audio co-creator Jimmy Iovine gave some of the first signs of a possible buyout of MOG in an interview on Wednesday. Although stopping short of confirming the deal directly, he mentioned to Bloomberg that Beats was "looking at this area." His company wouldn't try to encroach on iTunes' pay-per-track formula, which was largely secure, but saw a deficit in the subscription field.
"Right now, subscription music online is culturally inadequate," Iovine said. "It needs feel. It needs culture. What Apple has in the downloading world is very, very good. But subscription has an enormous hole in it, and it's not satisfying right now."
Were Beats to have its own service, it wouldn't just be a 'utility' as with others. There was a "magic trick" to what Beats wanted that had to be kept secret, he said. MOG has been considered a relatively straightforward music streaming service and would suggest extra work from Beats if the two are connected.
The plans as rumored would give Beats some level of autonomy over its future, possibly leading to its own device store and support for iOS along with the expected Android and possibly Windows Phone. However, its rumored $12 million acquisition of MOG may be a deal made on HTC's behalf to once again give it a music service after its Listen portal failed.