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Tidal, the streaming music service bought by Jay Z back in 2015, is reportedly in talks with Apple over a possible acquisition.

It seems one streaming service, Apple Music, may not be enough for Apple. The Cupertino giant is in early stage talks to buy Tidal, according to a report in The Wall Street Journal.

Talks are said to be at an early stage, with Tidal's strong ties with popular artists reportedly a key factor for Apple.

Music mogul Jay Z bought Tidal's parent compant Aspiro back in 2015, and has since grown the streaming service to more than 4 million subscribers.

Tidal offers a standard £10 per month music offering in line with Apple Music and Spotify, but also offers a £20 per month CD-quality streaming option. Tidal hi-res streaming is also set to launch later this year.

MORE: 23 Tidal tips, tricks and features

More after the break

As well as streaming music, Tidal has offered music downloads, music videos, streams of live events and even concert tickets, with an emphasis on exclusive content from big-name artists.

Apple's own Apple Music streaming service launched in June 2015, taking a leaf out of Tidal's book by offering videos and exclusive artist content alongside a more familiar streaming service.

Why would Apple buy Tidal? Tidal's strong ties to big-hitting artists, from Beyonce to Madonna and Kanye West, is said to be a key factor. Many of the artists are also stakeholders in Tidal and have offered music exclusively on the service as a result. 

Or could CD-quality or even hi-res music finally be on Apple's radar, with Tidal in a position to offer such a service? We fear that's probably a long-shot.

The Wall Street Journal reports talks are at an early stage but with Jay Z having paid $56 million for Aspiro back in 2015, expect any package to be above and beyond that figure.

It's unlikely to top the $3 billion Apple paid for Beats in May 2014, the company's largest and highest profile acquisition. Tim Cook noted that Beats had become the "brand of choice...in both the music and sports world" - could it be Tidal has carved out enough of a niche in the music industry?

The Beats acquisition also included the Beats Music streaming service, which was subsequently rolled into Apple's own music offering. Now it seems Apple may have its eye on another streaming service.

MORE: Apple Music review


jacking's picture


I'm not one bit happy about this. As a previous Apple iTunes and a current Tidal customer I just know Apple will a) Reduce the quality & b) increase the subscription fee. 

Don Ho's picture

1st Beats. 2nd Tidal. 3rd PONO?


hmd5859's picture

Here comes apple to mess things up

JayZ had the best intentions on keeping the fidelity in music alive. Now here comes apple with nothing more in mind than to monopolize the music service with expensive low quality audio. Somebody please tell them to just leave us alone and go back to thier hippie world. Some of us are tired of low quality music and would like to preserve our hobby. GO AWAY!!!!

coombsg's picture


I hope apple doesn't mess with tidal. It is the only high quality streaming service i have to listen to .