July 9, 2013
Beats In Talks With AT&T To Bring Daisy To Data Users
Michael Harper for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online
Beats Audio announced in January an upcoming music service (codenamed Daisy) which is meant to bring a "cultural context" to digital music. This service was slated to release in the summer of 2013.
Now, sources familiar with the matter are saying Beats executives are in talks with AT&T to package Daisy into the carrier's data plans to bring streaming music to more users, more quickly.
According to the sources who spoke with Cnet, conversations between Beats CEO Jimmy Iovine (famed Interscope Geffen A&M chairman and American Idol mentor), AT&T and music label executives are in early stages yet, but the matter of who pays how much for the streaming music is currently on the table.
As these discussions are still in early stages, the Cnet report claims this new service could end up on another carrier if AT&T passes. Getting to many devices in one fell swoop is an advantage Apple's iTunes Radio and Google Music's All Access have enjoyed thus far, while other subscription services like Spotify or Rdio rely on users signing up online and installing mobile apps to their devices.
Though Daisy will be yet another player in a new and rapidly growing market, Iovine is using his background and pedigree to differentiate the service from all the rest.
First, the very company Daisy is set to sprout from is the result of a partnership between fellow entrepreneur and producer, Dr. Dre. The two launched Beats Audio in 2008 and began selling bass-heavy and Dr. Dre branded headphones. The pair then hired on another highly esteemed musician, Trent Reznor of Nine Inch Nails fame, to act as their creative officer in 2012.
Earlier that year, the company also bought MOG, a subscription streaming service which garnered positive reviews but failed to gain traction against Spotify, Rdio and its other competitors. With these elements in place, Beats looks set to release a streaming service that Iovine claims will be different and more human than the rest. For instance, Daisy will host playlists created by actual people -- real artists, DJs and others who hand select the music.
In an interview at the All Things D conference earlier this year, Iovine explained further how his streaming radio player will separate itself from the rest of the pack.
"There's an ocean of music out there and there's absolutely no curation for it," said Iovine in an interview with Walt Mossberg. "Most tech companies never get curation right. It's not in their culture. We will be miles ahead of them. If you are going to the gym five days a week, we know that, and when you wake up we will have a list for you."
In addition to an allegedly new algorithm and curation system, Daisy is also being readily backed by members of the music industry -- no surprise considering Iovine's resume.
In March, the company confirmed $60 million in funding to launch Daisy which will become its own company underneath the Beats Audio umbrella. The company that owns Warner Music Group, Access Industries, led the $60 million funding for the new streaming service.
The pieces are nearly all in place. All that's left is for Beats to watch Daisy grow.