with the new creation, if it truly is an uber-tablet.
All speculative, but am EXTREMELY exciting.
***iHope it’s good***
We have been told that it will change everything. Everything. No one dares say ‘it’s a mass-produced tablet, or just a really big iPod touch’. Because as Jobs is my witness this is going to be the closest to the second-coming anyone has ever seen. Until LG make one for £600 less, as is their charming way.
Hype or not, even a very basic discussion about the concept of the iTablet, iSlate or iNeedtodropthe’i’soon, depending on who you believe, has yielded some interesting ideas. Here’s our wishlist.
1. Virtual sliders. This was the immediate revelation – if you’re got a DAW running touch screen technology, finally the digiphobes and reluctant engineers who left behind their sliders can have them back! It’s telling that controllers are so popular with producers, who love all that the digital world has offered but just can’t bring themselves to dial in settings on screen.
2. Software versions of touch-screen hardware Korg and Akai spring to mind very quickly indeed. I’m sure the former have already been thinking about the pros and cons of creating a downloadable Kaoss Pad from the all-encompassing iTunes store, and if they haven’t they should be. It would further enforce it’s immediacy as a production tool, only at an even more portable level, and provide integration for those already generating a lot of onstage sounds directly from their mac.
3. The likes of Traktor are probably already going mad. Touch-screen turntables, anyone? And assuming there’ll be bigger sizes of screen, ‘life size’ faders and knobs? There’ll be sensitivity questions, sure, but assuming this thing is serious about its intentions, that should be something achievable.
4. Keyboards. Again, on the larger screens this is a no brainer. And velocity sensitive? We shall see, but that would immediately allow the very real possibility of full-on synth software – the iPhone has baby versions already, but with the full processing power of a big brother you can fire up your Moog and your Roland.
5. DAWs. The worst case scenario is that the major players just go “well, it’s the same but wiv a touch-screen innit?” It would not be a giant surprise if that actually happened to begin with, but that would spell serious fiddlyness for 90 per cent of users – unless you’re tapping the knob you want to change and then drawing a much larger circle to shift it, you’re looking at minute changes becoming impossible.
That said, if someone puts some real effort into this, the possibilities are going to be endless. Drawing EQ peaks and troughs with your finger onto a grid, anyone? Dragging a virtual mic anywhere around a ‘room’ with one hand while adjusting compression with the other at the same time? In a lot of ways, it’ll be a return to hands on, in an incredibly compact form.
The list of innovations could go on forever – drum pads, lap steel, Tenori-On, light and sound amalgamations similar to the little-talked-about Gibson Magic technology – but more than anything what Apple could have on their hands, assuming the power and memory is there, is the ultimate, all-in-one music deck. Production, recording and live performance really could change forever, and all in one slim and doubtless-sexy-looking box.
This had better be good, Jobs. Don’t let us down.