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Korg take their first step into Android

And I think that this really is a big deal for Android users everywhere. It’s only fair to say that Android hasn’t been well served for mobile music making. There have been a few excellent apps, like Caustic 3 and G-Stomper to name just two, but not the massive amount that have made good use of the iOS platform.

So this is a very positive first step for Korg and for Android musicians everywhere.

Here’s what to expect from KORG Kaossilator for Android.

“KORG Kaossilator for Android” is a synthesizer app that lets anyone enjoy full-fledged instrumental performance simply by freely moving their finger across the touch panel. From electronic sounds to acoustic instruments and drums, you can play a wide range of sounds with a single finger. Also provided is a sequencer that’s indispensable for creating songs, so you can create tracks by recording and layering your performances. This easy yet full-fledged instrumental experience is now available on your Android smartphone.

Features

  • Perform using touch gestures: Kaossilator uses the unique X-Y interface. Create melodies and phrases simply by stroking, tapping, or rubbing the touch screen with your finger.
  • 150 diverse sounds covering many music styles: Use the 150 built-in sounds to perform and produce a broad range of dance music styles including EDM, hip-hop, house, techno, dubstep, nu-disco, and electro.
  • Scale/Key feature eliminates any wrong notes: The Scale setting ensures that the notes of your performance will stay in the key you’ve specified. Choose from 35 different scales including chromatic, major, minor, and even blues scales.
  • Loop sequencer for easy track-making and live performance: The built-in loop sequencer lets you layer up to five musical parts. By recording sounds such as synth, bass, chords, sound effects, and drums into each part, you can quickly complete original loop tracks that are distinctively your own.
  • Operation Requirements: Android 5.0 or later

Differences with iOS?

So what, if anything, is different from the iOS version? Well, for a start there’s no mention of WIST capability or of course AudioCopy/AudioPaste support, and no mention of how it might work with the Kaossilator 2. However, this is a first release. Perhaps, if it’s a success we’ll see features expand. Who knows?

For a limited time to celebrate the debut of KORG Kaossilator for Android (50% OFF) until Jan 5!

Google Play Store Link.

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19

Apple have turned a corner, Android is still lagging behind, and why is there no third option?

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If you don’t know already then you should be aware that Apple has started the process of killing off the headphone jack in their latest iPhone version. Aside from that it’s a lovely new iPhone. More RAM, better speakers, and stereo ones at that. But I can’t go there without the jack. All of this adapter stuff doesn’t work for me, and as for the AirPods, they just don’t make sense to me. They last for 5 hours before needing a charge, that’s great, but I’ve never had to charge my headphones ever. And, more importantly, there’s no mention of the audio latency anywhere, I don’t think that bodes well.

apple-airpods

What’s more, I doubt that Apple will stop there. This is the beginning. The iPad will be next, then the Mac too. Jacks will vanish and others will do the same.

So if you’re not going to the iPhone 7, where else is there to go? Well there are of course lots of other devices available. Personally I may go to the 6s next, it seems a reasonable compromise for now. There is Android of course, but for mobile musicians this might not be a palatable move from iOS, as, let’s face it, as a platform it doesn’t rival the range and diversity of iOS music creation. That’s only fair to say I think, and in itself a real shame. Android always had promise, but it doesn’t seem to have delivered so far.

And what’s more, the jack removal movement is there already, with the Moto Z already going jackless! It was in fact a device I was looking at with some interest due its modular nature, but with no jack it really lacks appeal. It won’t be the only jack free device soon either, that’s my bet.

big_moto-z-moto-z-force-edge-to-edge-1200x728

So where else is there to go? Well that’s really the point of this piece. There isn’t anywhere else to go that really works as an iOS alternative. Apple have really done what they set out to in making it an ecosystem that you can’t get out of. If you like your iOS music apps you’re pretty stuck right now, and that seems like a real shame. There’s little chance that Apple will licence iOS to another handset manufacturer, so there’ll be no device that really comes close.

You could view this as a real market opportunity, but in all honesty, who will take it on? It’s a gap that no one is likely to fill at all, and that’s so disappointing.

Personally I could attempt a return to Palm OS, or even Windows Mobile (the really old one), but I know that it wouldn’t last. What I’m really after is a real alternative, but who’s got pockets big enough for that?

Any thoughts? I’m stuck!

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ZONT looks like a modular Pocket Operator, but we won’t see it for more than a year

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I originally saw this over at Matrixsynth and ever since I’ve been meaning to take a closer look.

My first impression is that I love the idea of it, especially the modular design using interchangeable sound cartridges. I’m sure that I’m not the only person that’s going to appeal to. Bluetooth pairing to a mobile device is also a smart move.

Also the dock with RCA, MIDI, USB-C and 3.5mm jack outputs is a nice touch for using the thing when you’re not on the move. A very smart move indeed.

But Zont is a long way off for now. We won’t see it until late 2017, which is a long time to wait. Also there’s no mention of a price point as yet, which is to be expected, and whilst this might have a similar form factor to a Pocket Operator I’d expect the price to be significantly higher.

So for now you can check the pictures on the ZONT site and the tech specs below

Tech Specs:

  • Universal input interface
  • Stereo speakers
  • AMOLED display
  • Bluetooth connection
  • Wi-Fi cloud sync
  • Built-in rechargeable battery
  • Interchangable sound cartridges
  • 3.5mm headphone jack
  • USB-C
  • iOS and Android app

As soon as I know more about this device I’ll be sure to share it with you.

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And the Android promo codes for Music Studio are on the site now!

Grab them whilst you can! Here are the codes …

3D6U7EDC5DE8FZH32D74BM2
1F36UJ0HXU7PRC83DLPCGM8
YFQUU0VNQQN8FW1L2QCHTJQ
42UCJRK480FSXLV7J7DPPFD
5BYW5WRK2WSKWSK9KUAM54N
7T5K79WW9NN4DEHSBHQPEWU
PYCGWFPFCELD1UV869NQU3N
950P6N12NQDT68RKTA4YL2A
E672Z0JY25QRT8TG5YN3DPX

A huge thank you goes out to Alex the developer of the Android and the iOS version of this excellent app.

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Coming later this afternoon … Android Promo Codes for Music Studio!

This is a bit of a first for me. I’ve never distributed promo codes for Android, but it looks a lot like the process is very much the same as for iTunes. So, at 2pm I’ll be offering up 9 promo codes for the excellent Music Studio for Android (you’ll also know the iOS version).

If you want one of the codes then check back here at 2pm GMT exactly. The codes will all be available on the site.

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Moments in Mobile Music: 8 – Android

So you might be a little surprised to see Android in my list of mobile music moments. It’s only fair to say that Android hasn’t really delivered to the same scale as iOS. That would be true of course. However, it still has a place in the mobile music world. If I look back to pre-iOS days then we had two mobile operating systems. Palm OS and window mobile. Ok, back then neither had a huge range of apps available but they were both good in their own ways and gave you different ways of making music.

With iOS being so strong and so dominant I’d hoped that android would give the iOS world some competition. This has never transpired sadly. It’s been promised. There’s been a lot of talk about how android’s latency issues are going to be fixed but they’ve never been really addressed. It’s a shame but I’m not sure that those issues ever will.

Android was going to be a real choice a real alternative but I’m sad to say that it’s always been a very poor relation or perhaps a distant cousin. Maybe I’m stretching that analogy too far. Whilst there are 1,000’s of music apps for iOS there are only maybe 100’s for Android. It’s a shame. I’d like it to be different and I have a string of android devices to show that I’ve tried.

Perhaps one day this will change, but until then Android is always something of an afterthought.