HOLD UP... Apple is close to making it rain billions of dollars on fancy headphone outfit Beats by Dre, according to reports.
Sources have dropped a dime on so far unannounced plans and reckons that Apple will spend a impressizzle $3.2bn on keeping heads ringing.
Apple declined to comment on this to the INQUIRER this morning, but the Financial Times reports that it's an almost done deal.
Beats and Apple have enjoyed something of a cosy relationship since the former launched with an eye on music loving, technology fashionistas. Beats headphones, like the iPod, came to be the hardware to be seen wearing as you nipped from coffee shop to scooter workshop.
Eddy Cue, Apple's iTunes and apps guy, is driving the agreement, according to two sources close to both companies and apparently equally close to the Financial Times.
Beats was once controlled in part by rival mobile hardware outfit HTC, but that relationship wound down at the end of last year.
In September HTC said that Beats had bought back the 25 percent percent stake that it had. That was already less than half of the initial investment the Tawainese mobile phone maker had made in the electronics firm and closed down their partnership.
HTC had spent $300m on a 51 percent stake in Beats Electronics, while the Financial Times has estimated the Apple offer at $3.2bn.
Beats revenue has been consistently strong and in the US alone it controls over half of the headphone market. Last summer as the firm envisioned its future as a move away from HTC, it suggested that it was after a partner with much stronger consumer draw.
When it comes to strong consumer draws, there ain't nuthin' but an iThang, baby.
Dre, not a medical doctor, appears to confirm the deal on a Facebook video posted by an actor. Lubricated by what we assume is beer, he responded to suggestions that a rich list be updated with the words, ""The first billionaire in hip hop.. right here from the West coast", "µ