Apple may buy Jay-Z’s Tidal

Apple is reportedly in talks to buy Tidal, Jay-Z’s premium music streaming service.

It seems Apple is looking for any possible edge in its battle to make Apple Music relevant (and, let’s face it, usable). One of the steps it could be set to take is acquiring rival service Tidal.

If your hopes are rising of a high-fidelity Apple Music service, then you should probably temper your expectations a little. That doesn’t seem to be the goal with these talks.

According to The Wall Street Journal, Apple is more interested in Tidal’s close ties to a number of popular artists, such as Kanye West and Madonna. It has recently provided access to exclusive releases from the likes of Rihanna, Beyoncé, and West, which would no doubt appeal to Apple.

Tidal is also the only streaming service to currently offer access Prince’s back catalogue. The late pop genius reportedly had a close relationship with Jay-Z.

The report also cautions that these talks may not result in a deal. Which seems like a pointlessly obvious thing to say, when you think about it.

Jay-Z has only been in possession of Tidal himself for a little over a year. His infamously tone-deaf relaunch involved dragging out a host of rich stars to whom he had given stakes in Tidal and boasting of their new higher streaming payouts. Yay for the little guy.

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If this acquisition goes ahead, it’ll be interesting to see if Apple does introduce a new high-fidelity tier to Apple Music. At present, Tidal subscribers must pay £20 per month for the right to stream “Lossless High Fidelity” music. That’s double the price of a Apple Music, Spotify, or Google Music subscription.

Apple would presumably also get a small boost from any of Tidal’s 4.2 million paying subscribers who agreed to make the switch.

Would you welcome a merger of Tidal and Apple Music? Which features would you want to keep (or lose) from both? Let us know in the comments.

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