Apple's acquisition of Shazam under antitrust investigation

Apple Shazam

The European Commission on Monday opened an investigation of Apple's takeover of British music startup Shazam.

Apple announced in December 2017 that it meant to purchase Shazam for a rumored $400 million.

Shazam does not offer music for streaming, but it is able to direct users to listen to identified tracks through various streaming services like Google Play Music and Apple Music.

United Kingdom -based Shazam is best known for an eponymous app that listens to an environment's music and identifies tracks based on matching snippets against an extensive audio database.

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It's unclear what the worry is here, as Apple doesn't dominate digital music anymore and music identification capabilities are fairly common. The question there is if Apple Music would obtain an unfair competitive advantage with data from the United Kingdom firm it wishes to take over.

Apple's acquisition of Shazam is now under investigation by antitrust regulators in Europe. Regulators are anxious that Apple will use the service to push consumers to its own streaming service, hurting competition and unfairly advantaging its own service.

European regulators will investigate Apple's planned purchase of Shazam, the music recognition app that was developed in the UK.

The Commission's primary concern is that Shazam would give Apple access to commercially sensitive data about the customers of its competitors in the European Economic Area.

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