Cat, meet the outside of the bag.
You know that “major announcement” that HTC has scheduled for tomorrow morning? The details have just made their way out a bit early.
HTC just confirmed that they will be entering a strategic partnership with Beats Electronics, a company best known for its Beats by Dr. Dre line of headphones. While they’re leaving some details for tomorrow’s call, it’s expected that HTC will announce that they’ve acquired a majority stake (at 51%) of the company.
The actual size of the investment varies a bit depending on who you’re talking to: CNET says over $500 million, while AllThingsD pins it at $300 million. (Update: It’s now confirmed to be $300 million)
As you’d probably expect, HTC will be utilizing this investment to squeeze Beats technology (along with the “Beats” brand, of course) into their phones, with the first Beats-ified handsets hitting the shelves sometime this fall. At the very least, this means that the music that some people insist on blasting out of their phone’s crappy speakerphone while riding on public transportation might sound a wee bit less crappy in the future.
To celebrate, here’s a picture of a much younger version of me (and TechCrunch alum Peter Ha!) hanging out with a totally-excited-to-be-there Dr. Dre:
We’re still planning on liveblogging tomorrow’s event just in case any interesting details get tossed in the ring.