Hands-On With Apple's New Music Memos iOS App and GarageBand 2.1 Update

Since the launch of Apple Music and its included Apple Music Connect social platform, Apple has been focusing efforts on its music creation tools, as evidenced by today's surprise release of a brand new iOS app called Music Memos and a significant update to the iOS version of GarageBand.

Available for free, Music Memos is designed to allow musicians and songwriters to record, analyze, and manipulate high-quality uncompressed audio directly on an iPhone or iPad. Music Memos is accompanied by an update to GarageBand that introduces some fun new tools for musicians and average iPhone owners alike. We went hands-on with Music Memos and the revamped GarageBand to give MacRumors a closer look at what the apps are capable of.


Music Memos adopts its simple interface from the stock Voice Memos app, offering a single quick record button when the app is opened. Recordings can be overlaid with drums and a bass line, plus there are tools for analyzing recordings and editing aspects like tempo and time signature. There's also a built-in tuner for chromatic pitch notation.

Today's GarageBand 2.1 update introduces Live Loops, a fun visual music-making feature designed to allow users to create loops and add DJ-style effects through multi-touch gestures. Live Loops are displayed in an easy-to-use grid, with each instrument or sample in a different cell. Sound can be manipulated tapping and mixing the different instruments and the Apple-designed loop templates that are available in genres like EDM, Hip Hop, and Rock. The Drummer feature from Logic Pro X and GarageBand for Mac has also been added to the new iOS version.

Music Memos is compatible with the iPhone 4s and later and the iPad 2 and later. It can be downloaded from the App Store for free. [Direct Link]

GarageBand for iOS is provided for free with the purchase of any new iOS device with 32GB to 128GB storage space, so many iOS users may be able to download the latest 2.1 update at no cost. For those who do not already own GarageBand, it is available from the App Store for $4.99. [Direct Link]

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Top Rated Comments

iLilana Avatar
109 months ago
kanye can use the tuner to learn how to stay in key. then he can record a david bowie song.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
taptic Avatar
109 months ago
I like how Apple does things, occasionally, that we, sometimes, sort of seem to, every once in awhile, actually like!
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Haxley Avatar
109 months ago
Nice video!
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
ericgtr12 Avatar
109 months ago
Perfect for the musician who's never touched an instrument.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Deasnutz Avatar
109 months ago
I won't be happy until an iPad can pull directly FROM YOUR MIND.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
rhoydotp Avatar
109 months ago
I am a musician and I find these things to be pretty ridiculous and almost funny. Most of the functions shown are actually a roadblock to the creative element of music making, which to me is why you would pick up any tool to begin with. Makes me think of canned sounds on keyboard synths of the 80s, just with an iPad.
"roadblock to creative element of music making"? almost funny that this is coming from a musician ... a tool is a tool is a tool. how you use it is, well, that's where creativity really starts.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)