Google Buying Songza to Compete With Apple's Beats

1:24 PM PST 07/01/2014 by Natalie Jarvey

UPDATED: Google's deal for music streaming service Songza is said to be worth more than $39 million.

Google has acquired music-streaming service Songza after weeks of speculation about a potential deal.

Terms of the acquisition were not disclosed, but the New York Times is reporting that Google paid more than $39 million for the four-year-old company, more than double the $15 million that the New York Post reported Google had originally bid in early June. 

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Google announced the deal on its Google Play blog, calling Songza "a great service which uses contextual expert-curated playlists to give you the right music at the right time." Meanwhile, Songza also shared the news in a blog post of its own, adding "we can't think of a better company to join in our quest to provide the perfect soundtrack for everything you do."  

No immediate changes are planned for Songza, which will eventually move from its Long Island City headquarters to Google's New York office. Google will look to incorporate Songza into its Google Play Music service, YouTube and other products.

Songza was founded in 2010 to develop a free service that creates DJ-curated playlists based on various moods and themes. It also offers a 99-cent weekly subscription to do away with ads. The company, which now employs about 50 people, has about 5.5 million total subscribers.

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The acquisition comes on the heels of Apple's deal to purchase Beats Electronics and its streaming music service for $3 billion. Amazon also has jumped into the music streaming market with the launch of the Prime Music service, which comes as part of its $99 annual Prime subscription. The move appears to be part of Google's plans to compete in this increasingly crowded music-streaming space, which is already dominated by Spotify.

Google currently offers a music marketplace through Google Play and sells a $10 subscription to Google Play Music All Access, which has a library of 25 million songs available in 28 countries. But the company, which is working on a YouTube streaming music service, does not have a free streaming service and Songza's popular product will fill that hole.

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