Here in the tech media we love to
speculate about high-profile companies that Apple could buy, whereas in reality it tends to go for lesser-known names that bolster gaps in its portfolio in subtler ways. The latest Apple acquisition, for example, could point to a small but valuable evolution of the company’s Fitness+ subscription service.
Bloomberg reports that Apple has acquired AI Music, a British company focused on creating dynamic and adaptive music using artificial intelligence. The tech enables music to automatically adapt to a user’s heart rate, environment or other forms of interaction, making it particularly suitable for exercise and other physical activities.
Apple is therefore likely to integrate the technology with its
Fitness+ service, wherein tracks could adjust automatically to motivate the user at times of high effort, steep inclines and so on. But there may also be opportunities to use the dynamic music tech in Photos – to make iOS smarter at assembling suitable soundtracks for photo slideshows, for instance – and other apps that combine sound with non-audio elements.
In the past AI Music has signed deals with advertising companies to create adverts that can adjust their musical accompaniment depending on the audience. Apple’s business model tends to be less advertising-focused than rivals such as Google, so it remains to be seen if that’s a path it wants to go down.
The amount of money which Apple paid for AI Music has not been disclosed at time of writing, but Bloomberg characterises it as a “relatively small” deal. The site notes that Cupertino has slowed down on acquisition spending in recent years, which might make big-ticket buys like Peloton, as appealing as they seem, less likely in the coming months.
This article originally appeared on
Macworld Sweden. Translation (using
DeepL) and additional reporting by David Price.