Apple buys out cloud music provider Omnifone [u]

Posted:
in iPod + iTunes + AppleTV edited July 2016
Apple has bought out "global music platform provider" Omnifone in a deal thought to be worth $10 million, a report said on Wednesday.




Missing from the acquisition were Omnifone's patent portfolio, debts, and investments, according to documents seen by MacRumors. Terms did, however, include a "royalty bearing license," which should let Omnifone gauge the value of its patent stable.

Omnifone previously ran a white-label service called MusicStation, and has had partnerships with companies like Sony, Samsung, Vodafone, and PonoMusic. Samsung, for instance, used Omnifone's technology for Milk Music.

PonoMusic has posted a statement on its website, noting that Omnifone was recently "acquired by a large company," and is killing all of its supply relationships "effective immediately." It adds that while Omnifone was its sole content provider and the PonoMusic store is temporarily unavailable, it expected the transition and has been negotiating a changeover to 7 Digital.

Omnifone declared bankruptcy in May after losing important clients like Sony and BlackBerry. 71 people were laid off as the company hunted down a buyer for its technological assets.

It's not clear why Apple would want Omnifone, given that its own streaming service -- Apple Music -- is over a year old and fairly well-established, regardless of planned interface changes.

Update: Citing his own sources, the well informed Jim Dalrymple refutes today's report, saying that Omnifone's "mystery buyer" was not Apple.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 8
    calicali Posts: 3,495member
    Milk Music the iTunes killer. I remember Maroon 5 saying they were gonna burn their iPhones for Milk. (Later tweeted from iPhone of course)

    So what does this acquisition do exactly?
    jbdragon
  • Reply 2 of 8
    BradCavBradCav Posts: 4member
    "It's not clear why Apple would want Omnifone..." Given that Apple is extending iDevice storage capacity to 128 and even 256 GB, and the rumored lightning connector headphones and patch cables will be able to deliver better than CD quality sound, and that Omnifone used to deliver content for lossless provider Pono, I'm hoping this is a signal that Apple will begin delivering lossless content through the iTunes store and/or Apple Music.
    mike1levi
  • Reply 3 of 8
    slprescottslprescott Posts: 752member
    Or Apple just wants to remove this technology from the industry so some other competitor doesn't purchase it.
    edited July 2016
  • Reply 4 of 8
    P-DogNCP-DogNC Posts: 24member
    Neil Young has been "Pono'd"...
    [Deleted User]
  • Reply 5 of 8
    quadra 610quadra 610 Posts: 6,743member
    Anyone at first glance read that as PornoMusic?









    Anyone?
  • Reply 6 of 8
    levilevi Posts: 344member
    BradCav said:
    "It's not clear why Apple would want Omnifone..." Given that Apple is extending iDevice storage capacity to 128 and even 256 GB, and the rumored lightning connector headphones and patch cables will be able to deliver better than CD quality sound, and that Omnifone used to deliver content for lossless provider Pono, I'm hoping this is a signal that Apple will begin delivering lossless content through the iTunes store and/or Apple Music.
    I was thinking the same. Would align with the rumored interest in Tidal which also offers high fidelity options. Or at least that's my layman understanding. 
  • Reply 7 of 8
    kevin keekevin kee Posts: 1,000member
    Has Apple ever purchased something for charity? I knew that Omnifone had filed bankruptcy but I failed to see what Apple need "royalty bearing license" for.
  • Reply 8 of 8
    hexclockhexclock Posts: 559member
    Anyone at first glance read that as PornoMusic?









    Anyone?
    Yes. I even heard the wah pedal in my mind. 
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