Intel Corporation (NASDAQ:INTC) and Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson’s SMS Audio have teamed up on a new line of wearable technology. The rapper, actor, and entrepreneur spoke with CNBC’s Jon Fortt on Sunday night and explained why he decided to partner up with a major corporation like Intel Corporation (NASDAQ:INTC).
As Jackson explains, such a deal would not always have been well received within his industry.
“[…] A lot of artists, like within our culture, hip-hop, it would be something that was considered taboo. It was the crossover; to be associated with a major corporation while being an artist, cause it was either you were an artist or you’re a sell-out to a major corporation,” Jackson said.
However, times have changed since then, and artists are now increasingly aligning themselves with different companies and exploring different avenues of endorsement. One of the most recent examples showcasing that is the deal between Dr. Dre and Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), with the latter buying the former’s Beats Music and Beats Electronics for $3 billion in May, with Dr. Dre staying as a full-time Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) employee.
The Intel Corporation (NASDAQ:INTC) deal with Jackson will commence later this year with their BioSport In-Ear Headphones, which Intel Corporation (NASDAQ:INTC) claims will be the first to converge a high-quality audio system with fitness tracking. The headphones will be able to monitor some of the same areas as popular wearable devices like the FitBit, including heart rate, distance traveled, and calories burned. The data they compile will be compatible with the fitness-tracking app RunKeeper.
For Jackson, the partnership with Intel Corporation (NASDAQ:INTC) provides him with yet more freedom to explore some of his ideas, though he is aware of the dangers of having too many irons in the fire.
“I look at money like it’s the luxury that I’ve earned to create now. It allows me to make my idea happen now. And that’s it. It means nothing else,” Jackson said.