Apple confirmed on Wednesday that the company is buying Beats for $3 billion. Despite this acquisition, Hewlett-Packard (HP) said that they will continue to integrate Beats Audio technology in its high-end Windows PCs through 2015.
Hewlett-Packard's spokesman told CNET, that they are allowed to develop products that will include Beats Audio technologies through 2014 and can sell them till 2015; that's when at the two companies will dissolve their partnership. HP teamed up with Beats in 2009 and launched the first HP Envy Beats Edition laptop. Both companies have worked together after that in tuning up the audio drivers on HP's laptops.
Hewlett-Packard and Apple are direct competitors when it comes to desktop and laptop markets. Sure, people can buy Beats integrated laptops till 2015 but this acquisition surely is a big blow to HP. We'll have to wait and see what HP can come up with, after the partnership dissolves, to attract customers.
HTC also had a partnership with Beats. HTC's Android phone HTC One has Beats Audio sound enhancement. But, Beats bought back its stake ($265 million) in HTC last year, ending a 2 year partnership which didn't work out.