“Apple Reportedly Acquired Talent and Technology from Omnifone”
Apple recently picked up select technology from the online music provider Omnifone, and hired more than a dozen former Omnifone employees, reports TechCrunch.
It is speculated that Apple ‘bought out’ or ‘likely acquired’ key assets from Omnifone in July (or August). At that time Omnifone was said to find a buyer for parts of the company for $10 million, and the buyer was said to be Apple. Those reports were not confirmed by any side and soon treated with scepticism. Now about 16 Omnifone’s London-based employees have changed their employer to Apple on LinkedIn. Alongside with the talent grab, Apple also purchased some technology from defunct music startup Omnifone, according to an unnamed source who spoke to TechCrunch. Besides, MacRumors also reports that the purchase is not considered as a full acquisition, since it did not involve Omnifone’s patent portfolio, debts or investments.
Omnifone was found in 2003 and headquartered in London. It operated a cloud-based platform providing support for its own MusicStation service, and it also provided the back end infrastructure for other music services of companies, including LG, Samsung, Vodafone, BlackBerry, Sony, and more. The streaming music service provider went to bankruptcy this summer. It was placed into administration in May as it could not pay its debts following the loss of big clients like Sony and BlackBerry.
Omnifone has more than 50 patents of music technologies on the aspects of digital media recognition, streaming media, download technology and so on. In recent years Apple has placed more and more emphasis on Apple Music service, and it has made many acquisitions including Lala, Swell, Beats and MusicMetric. It is not clear what Omnifone technology were picked up by Apple. But a conclusion can be made that Apple would apply acquired talent and technology to improve Apple Music-related services.
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