Apple heads into its WWDC 2014 keynote address today after having just completed its highest-dollar acquisition of all time: a three billion dollar buyout of Beats By Dre. That means cofounders Dr. Dre and Jimmy Iovine are now both Apple executives, and will work within the company to integrate their existing product lines into the Apple product matrix. But the more immediate question is whether either or both will be a part of today’s keynote presentation, and whether Dre will end up being today’s musical guest.
Familiar Apple faces like Tim Cook and Phil Schiller will certainly be a part of today’s WWDC keynote, with a steady slew of executives taking turns showing off various new products and technologies. While it may be too soon to reveal how any of the newly acquired Beats by Dre products or technologies will be specifically incorporated into future products like the next iPhone or iTunes Radio 2.0, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see Dr. Dre and Jimmy Iovine take the stage to speak a few words today about what they hope to accomplish by pairing with Apple.
The last time Apple made an acquisition with a profile this high, it was in 1996 when it bought NeXT, which brought co-founder Steve Jobs back into the fold. While it’s a safe bet that neither Dre nor Iovine will be supplanting Tim Cook as CEO any time soon, both can be expected to take high profile positions within the company. Both men are widely influential within the music industry, and both were early supporters of the iTunes Store back when Jobs was trying to convince the record labels to support it a decade ago.
Apple typically ends its keynotes with a musical performance from a high profile musician, with past performances ranging from U2 to Coldplay to Norah Jones. Dr. Dre is quasi-retired as a musician, but could serve as today’s musical guest. Or he could simply make a mid-keynote cameo. He and Iovine could both speak on their plans for how the Beats Music streaming subscription service will morph into an Apple products.
Whether Dr. Dre and Jimmy Iovine appear during today’s keynote or not, it’ll be available via live stream online.