HTC invests in Beats for better smartphone audio
IDG News Service - HTC has invested in Beats Electronics, a U.S. headphones company rap artist Dr. Dre helped found, as part of a move to improve the audio on the Taiwanese smartphone maker's devices.
The partnership, announced on Thursday, will lead to a line of HTC devices integrated with Beats "sound innovations," according to a statement from the company. The devices will be available this fall.
HTC will have exclusive rights among mobile phone companies to Beats' products, said Jimmy Iovine, chairman of Interscope Geffen-A&M Records and co-founder of Beats, during a conference call to announce the deal.
Beats Electronics is a developer of high-end headphones, which claim to reproduce the sounds heard in professional recording studios. The company also helped build an audio system for Hewlett-Packard's ENVY laptop series.
HTC is investing $300 million for a majority stake in Beats, it said.
It said that after its investment, Beats will continue to operate autonomously, and maintain its partnerships with HP, Chrysler Group and Monster Cable Products.
The executives from HTC and Beats weren't specific about what they will sell. HTC CEO Peter Chou hinted that Beats has technology beyond headphone hardware that will make it into HTC phones. Through the partnership the companies will "work very closely together to make deep integration of Beats technology, software and hardware and the authentic user experience of HTC mobile phones," Chou said.
HTC may also benefit from Beats' experience as a consumer brand. "This partnership will also give HTC the opportunity to learn how the music industry, the Hollywood industry, do marketing," he said.
In explaining that Beats approached HTC about making the investment, Iovine compared Chou to Apple's iconic CEO Steve Jobs. "Why Apple works so well is they do have a head. If Jobs gets an idea, the rest of the company follows. When I went looking for a partner, I found that in Peter," Iovine said.
The investment in Beats will help HTC differentiate its Android devices against rivals including Motorola, Samsung and Sony Ericsson, said Daryl Chiam, an analyst with research firm Canalys. The newest Android smartphones are already starting to feature very similar hardware offerings, such as dual core processors, 3D screens, and the ability to connect to faster fourth-generation LTE (Long Term Evolution) networks, creating a need to differentiate, he said.
"It doesn't surprise me HTC would do this, considering the competition, especially among Android based vendors," Chiam said. "I think they will be able to use this as differentiator not just for music phones, but for mass market models."
HTC acquired Dashwire in Seattle earlier this month to boost its mobile backup and sync services.
- 18 Hot IT Certifications for 2014
- CIOs Opting for IT Contractors Over Hiring Full-Time Staff
- 12 Best Free iOS 7 Holiday Shopping Apps
- For CMOs Big Data Can Lead to Big Profits
- Slideshow: 5 ways to lock down your mobile device
- Slideshow: 10 mistakes companies make after a data breach
- How to rob a bank: A social engineering walk through
- Which smartphone is the most secure?
China says to Chiang Kai-shek all Bitcoins at the door.
China marches long and hard over internal financial institutions, proclaiming that Bitcoins "should not and cannot be used as a currency". The news sent Bitcoin exchanges into a dive like cormorants in the deep China Sea. But all is not lost -- or is it? Bitcoins have been bubbling back to the surface, or has China's stance drained all enthusiasm? In IT Blogwatch, fearless leaders and bloggers quote pearls of wisdom from the little red book of Bitcoin. Not to mention: Financial advice from Whiz and Ice...
- IT Certification Study Tips
- Register for this Computerworld Insider Study Tip guide and gain access to hundreds of premium content articles, cheat sheets, product reviews and more.
- Make or Break: New Auto Products Must Go To Market On Time
- This Webcast quantifies the value of time to market for the auto industry and highlights how Primavera Enterprise Portfolio Management can help organizations.
- Stock Shock: The effect of project and portfolio management on share price
- In this independent report, you'll see the intrinsic connection between long-term capital investment and short term market performance -- and how this can...
- Hedge Your Bets
- This report explains how visibility and increased governance is key to reducing risk.
- In the Firing Line
- CEOs Are Increasingly Being Held Accountable; How susceptible is the CEO's reputation to poor performance across the project portfolio?
- The CISO's Guide To Virtualization Security
- This guide describes the security challenges within virtualized environments and shows how to apply the concepts of Forrester's Zero Trust Model of information... All Financial IT White Papers
- Live Webcast Research Report: The Big Data Opportunity for HR and Finance If CEOs, CFOs, CIOs, and CHROs want to drive their businesses forward, they will need to quickly recognize the enormous value of big...
- Live Webcast The Freedom to Run Your Business Your Way Vendors are challenged to create flexible systems that customers can tailor to particular business strategies and industry needs. But the flexibility should not...
- Live Webcast The Business Value of Human Capital Management for Finance View now >>
- HR and Finance Were made for Each Other View now >>
- The Value of Human Capital for Finance Professionals View now >>
- The Business Value of Human Capital Management for Finance View now >>
- The Freedom to Run Your Business Your Way Vendors are challenged to create flexible systems that customers can tailor to particular business strategies and industry needs. But the flexibility should not...
- Research Report: The Big Data Opportunity for HR and Finance If CEOs, CFOs, CIOs, and CHROs want to drive their businesses forward, they will need to quickly recognize the enormous value of big...
- All Financial IT Webcasts
Computerworld's Best Places to Work in IT 2013 list featured Quicken Loans, Securian, Vanguard and other top finance organizations. Honorees say the distinction helps them recruit top talent and boost staff morale.
Want to join this elite group? Nominate your organization for our 2014 list.