Google acquires Simplify Media for streaming technology

Back in March, we lamented the removal of Simplify Media’s apps from the App Store. The company’s apps allowed you to stream music and photos from your home computer to your iPhone or iPod touch. It worked well, too—so well, in fact, that the company got itself snapped up by Google.

The announcement came today at Google’s I/O Conference in San Francisco, as part of a demo of the latest version of the search giant’s mobile operating system, Android. Google said it would use Simplify Media’s technology to enable Android users to stream music to their mobile phones.

Simplify Media said little when it pulled its applications in March, other than that the company was headed in “a new direction.” Apparently that new direction was the express train towards Mountain View.

Given the current competitive spirit between Google and Apple, it seems unlikely that a new version of Simplify Media will return to the App Store. However, rumors persist that Apple is creating a Web-based music streaming service, based largely on its acquisition of just such a technology in Lala. So iPhone users may eventually find that gap filled by a first-party solution. With Google’s entry into the space, it certainly gives Apple incentive to move in that direction, if it’s not doing so already.

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