When Microsoft revealed that it was using renaming its Xbox Music service to Groove, there was a bit of confusion. After all, there was another music app out there with the same name as well.
As it turns out, Microsoft Groove and that separate Groove app were two different things. And the Groove Smart Music Player, as the other app was called, was made by a Montreal-based startup called Zikera.
How could this be? Wouldn’t Zikera sue Microsoft if it had the name first? And wouldn’t Microsoft’s eager lawyers have discovered that the name Groove wasn’t just being used elsewhere, but was in fact being used for a music app?
Now, we may never know for sure. Because Microsoft just bought Zikera.
UPDATE: Microsoft actually bought Groove from Zikera, sorry. The company will continue on. –Paul
We are thrilled to announce that Groove has been acquired by Microsoft!
We envisioned a music player so intelligent that learns our tastes and habits in order to play the right music at the right time. Then Groove was born, and you made it a success. We are incredibly proud to have delighted you with a rich mobile experience and countless hours of music bliss through the tens of millions of personalized playlists we generated.
In light of this acquisition, Groove is no longer available for download, but current users may continue to use the app.
Not a word in there about Groove technologies or features making their way into (Microsoft) Groove. So I can only conclude that this acquisition was all about the name, and about clearing up that little legal nicety.
And irony alert: This is the second time Microsoft has purchased something named Groove. The software giant bought Ray Ozzie’s Groove back in 2005.