At the end of June, word broke that Apple was looking to acquire Tidal, Jay Z’s streaming service. There hasn’t been any official confirmation about the rumored takeover, but according to Kanye West, Apple needs to stop playing hardball and make a deal.
Apple taking over Tidal has its advantages and disadvantages: it would give Apple a leg up in the music streaming world, even as the deal appeared to be a bit of a long shot. As we noted then: a lot could go wrong before the acquisition occurs, and a new series of tweets from West suggest that it has hit some roadblocks.
This Tidal Apple beef is fucking up the music game.— KANYE WEST (@kanyewest) July 30, 2016
I need Tim Cook Jay Z Dez Jimmy Larry me and Drake Scooter on the phone or in a room this week!!!— KANYE WEST (@kanyewest) July 30, 2016
Fuck all this dick swinging contest. We all gon be dead in 100 Years. Let the kids have the music.— KANYE WEST (@kanyewest) July 30, 2016
Apple give Jay his check for Tidal now and stop trying to act like you Steve.— KANYE WEST (@kanyewest) July 30, 2016
Kanye’s certainly not happy, and his tweets appear to give some insight into the ongoing negotiations for Apple’s takeover of the service. The tech giant has a reputation for playing hardball when it comes to acquiring content, and if West’s tweets are taken at face value, Apple’s doing just that to Tidal: offering up what it believes is a fair price for the streaming service.
Tidal seems to be in a pretty good position to negotiate as well: its relationships with artists and exclusive deals are certainly something that Apple Music could use in its fight against Spotify. At the same time, however, Tidal has failed to gain widespread traction with users, and has recently had a class action lawsuit filed against it over West’s The Life of Pablo album.
West has made demands through Twitter in the past, and it's unlikely that this is how he'll get on Tim Cook's calendar.