The official explanation for why Beats bought back controlling interest from HTC was "more flexibility for global expansion." The unofficial explanation is reportedly that the phone maker did not meet "all of the financial commitments it has made to Beats," according to CNet. If true, it could have been a side effect of the rocky road HTC has been traveling lately, capped most recently by a temporary US customs hold on its flagship One X and Q2 results that saw a big dip in profit year-over-year.

Although Beats controls its own destiny (including MOG's music service), HTC will still retain 25 percent ownership of the company under the new arrangement. That's enough to secure a continued mobile exclusivity deal with Beats. The two companies will also work together on a "joint global marketing campaign later this year." So while the Beats logo and some core Beats technology will still likely find its way into HTC phones, don't expect Beats headphones to find their way into HTC boxes again anytime soon.