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How Apple Wants to Improve Shazam after Acquisition

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Deal delayed in regulatory review

Apple (AAPL) recently completed the acquisition of Shazam. The company disclosed its intention to acquire Shazam last year, but closure of the deal was delayed because it was subject to a thorough antitrust review in Europe where Shazam is based. The European Union’s antitrust review lasted for months. The regulator gave Apple the green light to proceed with the acquisition of Shazam earlier this month.

Apple is making some changes to how Shazam operates as it takes control of the business. The company says it will soon remove all advertisements from the Shazam app. Apple says this move will let users enjoy the best of the Shazam experience without interruption.

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Over a billion app downloads

The Shazam app has been downloaded more than a billion times. The app processes over 20 million music identification requests every day, according to a press release. Shazam was one of the first apps available when Apple launched its App Store platform a decade ago.

Song identification

People use the Shazam app to identify unfamiliar songs. Users can hold up their smartphone and let Shazam listen to the song they want to identify for a few seconds. If the identification is successful, Shazam pulls up information about the song such as the artist name and shows you where you can purchase or listen to the song.

The acquisition of Shazam is expected to strengthen Apple’s position against Spotify (SPOT), Pandora (P), and Amazon (AMZN) in the streaming music market. Apple Music has about 50 million total listeners compared to 180 million listeners on Spotify and 71.4 million listeners on Pandora. Amazon’s streaming music is offered as part of the Prime program, which has attracted more than 100 million members.

In a development that may increase competition for Apple, Sirius XM Holdings (SIRI) is buying Pandora for about $3.5 billion. Sirius is a leading provider of satellite radio service.

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