Apple and the idea of casual music making

This is an idea that has been knocking around in my head for a while trying to make sense, so if it doesn’t then please let me know. Since the launch of the Apple App Store the number of iPhone / iPod Touch music apps have risen exponentially, as has the type an complexity of music apps.

To an extent there are some traditional apps like iSyn, Jasuto, Technobox, and Randgrid representing the type of app that has existed on other mobile platforms for some time. But alongside these apps are a wholly different kind of mobile music application that lend themselves not only to the physical nature of the hardware, but also to the behaviour of the user, or the ‘casual’ nature of application use.

These are apps like Bloom, SynthPond, iShred, Nlog, and Megasynth (there are many more of course). These apps allow a user to casually make some music on the fly, maybe record it, and then move off to do something else. Some apps require a large amount of skill and experience (like Megasynth), and others require the user only to be familiar with the interface that the app presents (iShred). Either way these applications allow you to engage quickly in making music and then move to something else.

So, have Apple helped to define this ‘casual music making’, or simply created a platform where it is easier to engage?

So why didn’t this kind of explosion of applications occur on older more established platforms like Palm or Windows Mobile? I have no idea. Perhaps it was the whole buzz around the iPhone that generated enough momentum to get developers involved and making the kind of high quality applications that are coming out now.

Either way I think that there is now a real new category of software that I’d like to call ‘casual music making’ that has come to life with the iPhone and iPod Touch, and I think that’s a good thing.

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Hardware for iPhones

One of the things that Apple announced with iPhone 3.0 was the ability for hardware manufacturers to access the OS via the dock so that accessories could be used by applications.

There’s been very little said about this in any of the many Apple rumour blogs so far, but I wonder what we will see from the likes of Alesis and Belkin who have both been very active with the iPod in the past.

Personally I’d like to see something that gives the iPhone / iPod Touch a real keyboard in a little fold out case so you can have access to real keys on the go, and a mic jack would be good too.

What sort of hardware would you like to see next?

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Tripper for iPhone

Tripper is another Tenori-on like app. Nice graphics in this one.

Tripper at the app store:

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