Did Dr. Dre just confirm that Apple has bought Beats?

Beats by Apple?

Updated: A Facebook video uploaded by actor Tyrese Gibson hints that Apple be snapping up Beats headphones. In the video, Dr. Dre says "The first billionaire in hip-hop, right here," seemingly confirming the aquisition.

Or maybe he just had a really good month in eBay sales? We're holding out for something more official - watch this space. Interestingly, the video has now been taken down, but a ripped version has appeared here (warning: lots of swearies).

Original story below...

Apple may soon drop a few billion to pick-up Beats Electronics.

According to sources of the Financial Times (paywall), Apple is in talks with the Dr. Dre-co-founded firm for a deal that would turn the headphone purveyor over to Cupertino for $3.2 billion (about £1.8b, AU$3.4b).

The purchase could be announced as soon as next week, though nothing is final and, depending on how discussions between Apple and Beats play out, may still fall through.

Beats made a name for itself with headphones slung on by celebrities from every ilk, but recently the company helmed by Jimmy Iovine broke into the streaming game with Beats Music.

TechRadar asked Apple and Beats for comment on the reported sale, and Beats responded that it "has no comment at this time." We've yet to hear from Apple.

Apple re-pressed play

Despite the cool factor afforded by high-profile peeps sporting Beats by Dre headsets, Apple's true interest in Beats may lie in its streaming music offering. To be sure, Dre's headphones are a staple of Apple's online and retail stores, but the iPhone maker may consider Beats Music the real catch.

iTunes Radio launched in October 2013, but iTunes itself has been rumored for a "radical overhaul" for several months now. Where it once ruled the one-and-done download space, subscription services services are increasingly taking consumers into their streams.

A Beats Music/iTunes Radio mash-up could be what Apple needs to reinvigorate its musically inclined revenue stream.

If the deal goes through, it would potentially be Apple's biggest purchase to date. It'd certainly rank for name-recognition; the Mac maker typically sticks to lesser-known loot.

What's more, two sources of The New York Post revealed CEO Iovine may join Apple as a "special adviser" to Tim Cook, chiming in on creative matters.

Stay tuned to TechRadar for more on Apple's Beats buy. We're sure to hear more in the coming days if the report proves true.

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Michelle Fitzsimmons

Michelle was previously a news editor at TechRadar, leading consumer tech news and reviews. Michelle is now a Content Strategist at Facebook.  A versatile, highly effective content writer and skilled editor with a keen eye for detail, Michelle is a collaborative problem solver and covered everything from smartwatches and microprocessors to VR and self-driving cars.