Why I Think Apple Bought Beats

Discussion in 'Apple, Inc and Tech Industry' started by kolax, May 12, 2014.

  1. kolax macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2007
    #1
    In order to make the 5.5" model of the iPhone 6 really thin, Apple needs to use a 2.5mm audio connector. But, since there's not a great deal of headphones out there that use a 2.5mm jack, it would be less attractive to upgraders and switchers to get a phone that will require them to use an adapter for their existing headphones or be stuck with the notoriously (or debatable) not-so-good signature white ear buds until headphone brands start releasing 2.5mm headphone models they could consider upgrading to.

    In order for there to be a good selection of quality 2.5mm headphones ready from launch day of the iPhone 6, Apple buys Beats. Bit ridiculous just to have a manufacture change their headphones from 3.5mm to 2.5mm it seems...? Well, I imagine this:

    Apple won't ship any headphones in the box, but instead give you a generous rebate for a selection of 2.5mm Beats headphone exclusives. Given how low the production costs of Beats headphones are said to be, iPhone 6 buyers could choose from free headphone models included with their phone purchase to 'premium' ones that bring very high profit margins for Apple. Apple would expect a significant number of buyers to choose the premium rebate/discounted headphones over the free ones.

    Having an established brand sell an exclusive range of headphones just for your device from launch, using that established headphone brand as a reason why people should buy an iPhone 6 (e.g. free Beats headphones for every purchaser), yet, managing to get every penny of the profits PLUS a streaming service as part of the deal which'll further help improve their own music streaming was too good an opportunity for Apple to pass on.

    So, due the thinness of the 5.5" iPhone 6 requiring a 2.5mm audio connector, Apple needs to not let that put off buyers by offering free select Beats headphones/rebates. The 4.7" model will have a 2.5mm connector as well but could've housed a 3.5mm one.
     
  2. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2008
    Location:
    Finland
    #2
    Nothing stops Apple from working with the headphone manufacturers to develop 2.5mm models for the iPhone 6 launch. You don't need to spend over three billion dollars on buying a company to do that - a simple non-disclosure agreement is enough to keep the information away from the public. Besides, acquisitions take months to complete, so it's unlikely that Apple and Beats are able to develop anything for the launch of iPhone 6.

    No offense, but your theory is a very, very big stretch. There are far more reasonable reasons as to why Apple spent $3.2 billion on Beats.
     
  3. kolax thread starter macrumors G3

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    Mar 20, 2007
    #3
    Apple gets all the profits from Beats' brand, and uses them to market the iPhone 6 further. The 2.5mm issue gets taken care of by the acquisition of Beats too. I think to switch to a 2.5mm connector, Apple would need to start the headphone surge themselves via Beats.

    How many brands of headphone would suddenly start offering a 2.5mm model? Would they transfer their whole range to 2.5mm for the iPhone 6 or just a couple of models?

    It sounds silly when it's just a smaller connector, but having to use an adapter to get a good selection of headphones rather than just the few models that were made available in a 2.5mm size is a big inconvenience. Adapters tend to wobble and are extra bulk.
     
  4. Armen macrumors 604

    Armen

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    Apr 30, 2013
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    127.0.0.1
    #4
    "Having an established brand sell an exclusive range of headphones just for your device from launch, using that established headphone brand as a reason why people should buy an iPhone 6" -

    HTC tried this already and did NOT work at all. No one was flocking to buy HTC phones because it came with Beats headphones.

    "In order to make the 5.5" model of the iPhone 6 really thin, Apple needs to use a 2.5mm audio connector"-

    I just don't see Apple disrupting the entire audio accessory industry just for the sake of "20% thinner". If it IS indeed Apple's plan it's too late in the game to make this happen for the iphone 6. It would take at least a year of planning/testing to do this.

    "So, due the thinness of the 5.5" iPhone 6 requiring a 2.5mm audio connector, Apple needs to not let that put off buyers by offering free select Beats headphones/rebates" -

    Are you under the impression that Beats is something innovative and amazing? They are just overpriced junk headphones. You could buy a way better set of headphones for the price unless all you like is bass and muffled mids/highs when you listen to music.

    I think Apple is going to use the Beats Music service as a foundation to improve the iTunes Radio experience. iTune music downloads have declined in recent years so Apple needs to get into the streaming music game.

    Of course the next question is why didnt they just buy Pandora or Spotify?

    Because Beats aside from its music service is also a recognized brand and can make money on its own in just sales of its iconic headphones.
     
  5. kolax thread starter macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2007
    #5
    A year of planning and testing to put in a 2.5mm connector instead?

    I can see Apple doing this for the sake of 20% thinner. They'll sacrifice what they can for thinness (in the past: ethernet, thinner MagSafe, optical drive), and going to a 2.5mm connector if there's suitable headphones to accommodate it isn't a bad idea.

    No, but they're very good at marketing and their overpriced junk headphones sell.
     
  6. Armen macrumors 604

    Armen

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    127.0.0.1
    #6
    From a consumer's point of view this is a bad idea. I own a pair of $120.00 headphones that I listen to music with at work while working. If what you say is true than I'd have to buy a $29.00 (most likely the price) Apple Adapter to make my STANDARD headphone jack fit into Apple's non-standard headphone jack connector? If that's the case I may as well keep my iphone 5 or go with another smartphone that continues to support the standard headphone jack size.

    I just don't see it to be honest with you. 3.2 Billion just to make a smaller headphone jack? :confused:
     
  7. sdilley14 macrumors 65816

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    Feb 8, 2007
    Location:
    Mesa, AZ
    #7
    I completely disagree with all of this.

    I think Apple is buying (or negotiating a purchase, I don't think they've actually acquired Beats yet) for access/ownership of the Beats music service and for Jimmy Iovine. I think they want to take the Beats music service and use it to massively overhaul iTunes (both from a design perspective and to integrate the subscription model Beats uses). And I think they want to bring Jimmy Iovine on board to leverage his knowledge/connections in the record industry, and possibly to serve as an overlord of the iTunes division.

    I think the actual headphone business is a complete afterthought/non-factor. I've never known Apple to be a company that is at all interested in selling high margin peripheral devices. If they wanted to sell sexy, high margin headphones, they could very easily do it on their own, and they wouldn't have to pay $3b+ to do it.
     
  8. ApfelKuchen macrumors 68020

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    Aug 28, 2012
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    Between the coasts
    #8
    If the current iPod Touch (6.1mm thick) can get by with a 3.5mm connector, it should be no issue for the iPhone.
     
  9. turtle777 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2004
    #9
    This.

    Plus, if Apple really wanted to get rid of 3.5mm audio connectors, they would replace it with lightning audio, and a lightning to 3.5mm adapter.

    -t
     
  10. smoledman macrumors 68000

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    Oct 17, 2011
  11. phrehdd macrumors 68040

    phrehdd

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2008
    #11
    A multi-BILLION dollar purchase for a headphone jack used to promote a new iPhone? I believe there are far more critical facets to the purchase than the headphone jack as a primary reason.
     
  12. roadbloc macrumors G3

    roadbloc

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2009
    Location:
    UK
    #12
    The move to a smaller headphone jack would be a bad one. I'd have no devices compatible with it. And I ain't buying even more new hardware just to be able to do what I could do quite easily before. For me, it would be one more reason why I won't get another iPhone.

    A smaller audio jack isn't the solution. Bluetooth audio is.
     

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