HP Loses Beats Audio. What Now?

hpIt has been confirmed that HP will be dropping Beats Audio from their line of PCs by the end of 2015.

HP currently uses technology from Beats Electronics in up to 20% of their current line of consumer PCs, and even a lot of their high end tablets. Now, one of HP’s biggest rivals, Apple, owns the entire Beats brand.

Apple recently purchased Beat for $3 billion. This is the biggest investment Apple has ever made, and it also made Dr. Dre the richest rapper alive, officially. Now Apple has control over everything, including the technology that HP uses in their products.

HP still has the rights to use Beats Audio in new products until then end of 2014, and they are still planning on pumping out as many new models using Beats as possible. After that, they can’t make any new products, but are allowed to continue selling the products until the end of 2015. After that, they have to completely cut all sales of any products using Beats Audio completely.

Beats has been a big part of the HP line since 2010 when they launched the HP Envy laptops. Since then they have used Beats in just about every higher end model, including the Slate 7 tablets.

Is this really going to be a huge deal for HP? Are they really going to take losses and suffer? Let’s think about this logically:

The Beats technology uses mainly software. There is a constant sound equalization that is supposed to optimize headphone listening. This same technology is offered in a few different cars as well. But, it’s pretty silly if you think about it… Beats headphones are also tuned in such a way that optimizes the sound as well. Plugging in a pre-equalized pair of headphones into a pre-equalized computer would result in a silly sounding over-equalized sound. That is the first point.

My second point would be that if you don’t have a really great sounding pair of headphones, or if your main device to listen to music on is a laptop, then lets be honest here, you really don’t care what music sounds like anyway. You probably could not care any less about the quality of music.

Not only that, but if the whole magic behind their Beats Audio magic is nothing more than an equalization software, HP is just going to recreate the exact same thing and call it something different. This may even improve the companies image a little bit, and people may take them a little more seriously when they release another computer based around a musical experience. Beats has an amazing reputation among young people who don’t know any better and just want to hear so much bass that it makes their brain shake, but most true audiophiles would puke if they ever listened to their favorite album under those conditions.

So far, HP hasn’t said anything about a replacement plan for when their deal with Beats expires. But like I said, it will most likely be the same thing just branded differently.

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