It’s a big boost for the London-based maker of the song identification smartphone app. Shazam says the $40 million investment from Carlos Slim‘s America Movil will help accelerate its ongoing growth in music, continued expansion into television and new product development. The deal includes an agreement to pre-install Shazam on mobile phones sold in Latin America, Shazam Executive Chairman Andrew Fisher told Bloomberg. Shazam uses algorithms to analyze unique elements of music to help users identify the title and other information. An acoustic fingerprint is created based on a sample taken from the phone’s microphone and is compared against a central database for a match. If a match is found, the app identifies information such as the artist, song title, and album. Shazam has over 70 million monthly users, according to the company.
EXCLUSIVE: The partnership represents a slight change of course for movie theaters that have been trying so hard to persuade people to put their phones away. Venues that receive their pre-movie commercials from Screenvision soon will encourage patrons to take out their phones and use the Shazam app to help them take advantage of advertiser offers. The companies plan to formally announce the partnership today at Screenvision’s first-ever upfront presentation, although a campaign involving the HTC 1 smartphone began April 12. Screenvision will run 15-second reminders urging moviegoers to take out their phones while the ads run; the Shazam app automatically identifies the ad that’s playing. At that point, companies could transmit to smartphones opportunities to enter contests, buy something, receive additional information or samples, or watch the ad again. The No. 2 movie ad sales company says the arrangement gives it a leg up on industry leader National CineMedia.