The next chapter in the battle between tech giants Google, Apple and Amazon sings a very similar tune. With Apple acquiring Beats for $3billion, and Amazon launching a music streaming service alongside Prime memberships, Google has jumped on the bandwagon and bought Songza.
Neither company have disclosed the deals’ money details, but previous reports estimated that discussions were around the $15million mark before other suitors got involved, which would have considerably raised the price tag. The New York Times claims the final deal closed for over $39 million - still considerably less than Apple’s Beats purchase.
Songza allows you to pick your music based on mood and genre, as well as suggesting curated playlists depending on the time of day and your listening history. Playlists are created by actual humans (a rarity in modern technology), rather than relying solely on algorithms like most of its competitors (that's you, Spotify). Playlist titles include ‘Indie music that’s not too weird’, ‘mellow escapist evening’ and ‘classic pop wake-up call’ and are produced by music DJs and journalists. This signature concierge service can be accessed through Songza’s website, iOS, Android and Chromecast.
Google’s acquisition of the music streaming service means that over the next few months, many of these popular Songza features will be integrated into Google play music and potentially also Youtube, although Songza will continue to remain an active and independent app in the mean time. After launching its mobile app in 2011, Songza now serves over 5.5 million active users, and therefore also holds a massive amount of their preference data.
Songza knows what its users like to listen to at each point of the day, as well as their weather, location and activity - all valuable factors to Google’s quest to totally integrate technology into every aspect of our lives.
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