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Jimmy Iovine Confirms Apple Will Not Buy Tidal

Justin Sullivan, Getty Images
Justin Sullivan, Getty Images

In June, the Wall Street Journal reported that Apple was in exploratory talks to acquire Tidal. Yesterday (Sept. 14), BuzzFeed reported that Apple is in fact not looking to acquire Tidal.

Head of Apple Music Jimmy Iovine tells BuzzFeed, “We’re really running our own race. We’re not looking to acquire any streaming services.” Iovine’s interview with the publication is the first time someone from Apple addressed the alleged talks that began in June. Apple currently has around 17 million paid subscribers, and Tidal has about 4.2 million. For now, it seems Apple is passing on the potential to acquire Tidal.

As we’ve noted before, purchasing the Jay Z-owned Tidal would remove a major threat to Apple’s goal for streaming supremacy. In fact, a new report finds that Spotify, after hitting 40 million subscribers, is outpacing Apple in terms of acquiring new users. Tidal also just posted a monster loss of $28 million dollars, so despite pursuing aggressive policies for exclusive albums, neither Tidal nor Apple seem to have the secret ingredient that Spotify does for retaining subscribers. Perhaps it’s Spotify’s student discount, which offers kids in school a premium account for half the price ($4.99). Artist exclusives feel like a good way to grab new users, but how do you keep them?

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