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macrumors bot
Original poster
Apr 12, 2001

When Apple acquired Beats Electronics, several companies that had deals and partnerships with the headphone company were forced to sever their agreements, including Hewlett-Packard (HP).

At the time of the acquisition, HP was selling laptops with "Beats Audio" branded speakers, through a partnership with Beats that was originally established in 2011. HP was only allowed to continue development on products using Beats Audio technologies through the end of 2014, leaving the company without an audio partner and without the "cool" factor Beats brought to the partnership.

Ahead of the end of its partnership with Beats, HP began using its own in-house audio solution and ceased using Beats branding and logos, but it was unclear if that solution was based on Beats audio technology, as suggested by PCWorld.
At the launch of the recent HP Spectre X360 last month, an HP executive declined to tell the IDG News Service whether the homegrown technology was influenced by Beats, or if it had Beats amplifiers in them. HP has excellent in-house technology to boost audio in PCs, said Mike Nash, vice president of product management for consumer personal systems, at the time.
Though there may have been some remaining ties to Beats in HP products, HP today signaled its readiness to move on from the Beats brand by inking a deal with a new audio partner -- Bang & Olufsen.

HP will use Bang & Olufsen audio technology in its PCs, tablets, and other accessories, with "custom tuned" audio for different PC models. Beginning this spring, HP PCs with Bang & Olufsen branding will start shipping to consumers. Like it did with its Beats partnership, HP will add Bang & Olufsen stickers and logos to the PCs, highlighting the new audio technology. CNET shared HP's thoughts on the new partnership.
"We've certainly spent a lot of time working on audio with Beats over the years. I think certainly a lot of learnings both ways in that relationship," Mike Nash, an HP personal-computer and printing vice president, said on a call with reporters Tuesday, soon after the deal was announced. "The opportunity now is to take everything we already know and combine that with some new expertise ... as part of our partnership with Bang & Olufsen."
Even as HP moves on to Bang & Olufsen, the company is permitted to continue to sell its remaining stock of Beats-branded laptops through the end of 2015, so Bang & Olufsen-branded HP products may sit on store shelves beside those with Beats Audio technology.

Article Link: HP Partnership With Apple's Beats Officially Ends as HP Moves on to Bang & Olufsen


macrumors 68040
Jul 10, 2012
Why would B&O (a fav of Steve IIRC) want to devalue their brand by hooking up with HP?

Makes me wonder if B&O is hurting for cash or is planning to move downmarket.


macrumors 68030
Jul 15, 2012
I really appreciate B & O.
You would think Jony wanted that marriage

Agreed. Apple and B&O marriage makes a lot more sense on many levels than with Beats.

I was never a fan of Apple spending $3B on Beats when they could have created all of that in house for a fraction of that price. If they were after Iovine and Dre, again, $3B can buy you a LOT of music executives.


macrumors 68000
Jun 24, 2010
HP has some strong brand marketing...

I just noticed this evening that all the PC laptops on the desk of the newsreaders on BBC News are all HP laptops.


macrumors 6502
Jun 19, 2012
Vojens Denmark
Beats are really low quality. One must be deaf to find that good. B&O tops Beats a million times. Beats only sell because of the hype.

Or I'm just writing that because I'm from Denmark... ;)

Anyway. B&O and Apple would be a dream team. 2 Products known for "quality" and being a statement to own.


macrumors 65816
Aug 3, 2010
Apple and B&O makes much more sense than Beats. The roles should normally have been reversed here. They align with Apple's image much better IMO.
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macrumors G3
May 25, 2008
SMH. Apple chose poorly. They were the ones that should have bought B&O. But then again, they aren't selling as well as Beats do in Apple Stores. The new MacBook could have had a B&O sound system. Now that's classy.


macrumors 6502a
Sep 20, 2013
London, UK
Nothing against Beats but yeah... Should really be B&O with Apple and HP with Beats. At the very least, they should have acquired B&O as well since that would tackle two major target markets. Something went wrong along the way!


macrumors 65816
Jun 16, 2009
Sydney, Australia
Who knows, Maybe Apple's purchase of Beats is for their 'youth' market, while they're keeping a pretty eye on another well-known brand: Bose for the 'pro' market.

One could always wish...


macrumors 601
Mar 7, 2008
Atlanta, USA
SMH. Apple chose poorly. They were the ones that should have bought B&O....

Yep, had Apple bought B&O they could've transfused some highly-compatible new blood into their industrial design dept.

Not to knock Apple, but lazily doing yet another version of "thin" is not cutting it any more. They're stagnating. B&O, on the other hand, have been cranking out beautiful and original designs for decades: Well before Apple hopped on the "design" train.


macrumors 68020
Feb 23, 2006
San Francisco, CA
Beats headphones are really terrible ... I was given a pair for christmas and I honestly have to say they might be the worst I have ever used.

They fall out of your ears, have poor sound, heavy and poorly designed.

I still can't believe Apple wasted money buying them.
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