New in OS X: Get MacRumors Push Notifications on your Mac

Resubscribe Now Close

Apple Close to Acquiring Radio Streaming Service Swell for $30 Million

Apple is close to acquiring talk radio curation service Swell for about $30 million, reports Re/code. Swell's iOS app launched last year and allows users to listen to streaming audio from iTunes, NPR, ABC, ESPN and others through a design that emphasizes simplicity.

As a part of the acquisition, Swell will shut down its iOS app this week as its CEO Ram Ramkumar and other members of its development team will join Apple. Apple will likely look to use Swell's technology to improve its own Podcasts app, which holds a 1.5 star rating and has been widely criticized for performance issues. Users of Podcasts also experienced an outage last month, as the app constantly crashed upon opening.

swell_app
Swell's iOS app

Apple's purchase of Swell follows the acquisition of "Pandora for Books" startup BookLamp in April for a reported sum between $10 million and $15 million, as the company also acquired Beats Electronics this past May for $3 billion. It was revealed in the company's Q3 2014 results earnings call that it had acquired 29 companies since beginning of 2013, with 5 coming from beginning of March quarter, not including Beats.

Update 7/29 12 PM PT: Apple has confirmed its acquisition of Swell in a statement to The Wall Street Journal.

Top Rated Comments

(View all)

9 weeks ago
I find it strange that Apple can't design a decently operating podcasts app
Rating: 11 Votes
9 weeks ago
Well ain't that swell.
Rating: 6 Votes
9 weeks ago

I find it strange that Apple can't design a decently operating podcasts app

I use the podcast app very frequently across iPad/Phone/MBP and never have had a problem. What problem/s are you having?
Rating: 4 Votes
9 weeks ago

So many acquisitions


Agreed - it makes them look desperate. Acquiring Beats was the biggest mistake Apple ever made, because even if it makes them money, it damaged their reputation among those customers who set trends.
Rating: 2 Votes
9 weeks ago
After Beats you wonder why they'd need anything else. :rolleyes:
Rating: 2 Votes
9 weeks ago
So many acquisitions
Rating: 2 Votes
9 weeks ago

$30 mil :eek:

With so many, i reckon Apple doesn't have a clue what it's doing..

They're just randomly poking in the hope they will poke the right guy.

Maybe they should have done their homework better.

I don't mind going into things when I'm confident I'll get there, but having no idea...??

That's pretty stupid.

Apple makes $4 million in profits per hour. So even if it was a total screw up (which I don't think it is), it would take them 7.5 hours to make it all back.
Rating: 2 Votes
9 weeks ago
Tim Cook loves expensive shopping!
Rating: 2 Votes
9 weeks ago

It's all about streaming. Nobody purchases digital music anymore.


I sure wish people would stop calling me nobody :-P


Seriously though, speak for yourself.. I can't believe there are so many suckers out there *RENTING* music...

Sigh.
Rating: 2 Votes
9 weeks ago
Тhis is good step. Apple can't do everything well, so acquiring good product always helps.

Hint: Garageband, iTunes, OS X
Rating: 1 Votes

[ Read All Comments ]