Apple buys AI Music: will we see user-generated workout soundtracks?

Apple Watch workout

Apple has acquired UK-based AI Music, a startup that uses artificial intelligence to produce royalty-free music to fit a listener’s current mood or tempo.

As reported by Bloomberg and others, AI Music uses technology to generate a soundtrack that changes based on what the user is doing. Music during a workout, for example, can change based on the user’s heartbeat, adjusting to the intensity of the workout. The company previously described it as a feature that would allow advertisers to create audio matching user context, like their mood.

The new acquisition seems extremely relevant to Apple’s current fitness focus. We can easily imagine a situation where users would be able to hear the soundtrack of their run change as they pick up the pace, or as they start to record a bike ride on their Apple Watch.

It is ironic that Apple made this purchase, especially after it launched Apple Music in 2015 with lots of talk about how humans are important alongside algorithms. AI Music, however, has made a habit of bringing human musicians into the studio to work with its systems.

One thing seems certain; the features Apple offers with Apple Fitness are about to get a lot more interesting.

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