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.

Tag: Recode

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Top Rated Comments

sputnikv Avatar
130 months ago
I find it strange that Apple can't design a decently operating podcasts app
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
jji7skyline Avatar
130 months ago
Well ain't that swell.
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
writingdevil Avatar
130 months 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?
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
jwdsail Avatar
130 months 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.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
flux73 Avatar
130 months 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.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
meetajhu Avatar
130 months ago
Tim Cook loves expensive shopping!
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)