The iPhone as a music instrument

04 Dec in music, Music Technology, Technology

Wired is reporting on the use of iPhones as instruments (see the video below). This is a really neat idea to me. First it goes beyond just the simple playback of notes. In this concert sounds are actually manipulated through the various sensors of the iPhone. The article notes the various sensors (touchscreen, microphone, compass, accelerometer). The data that each of these sensors receives should change the sound in some meaningful way.

Of course perhaps the style of music performed here isn't quite your style, but that isn't quite the point. The point is a demonstration of what is possible and right from the very phone you carry in your pocket. It will be quite interesting to see where this might lead. I think the most ingenious aspect of the project is the possibilities and variations using the various sensors. Of course there have been various "instruments" on the iPhone. Ocarina is probably the most famous. It uses the microphone to simulate blowing and the touchscreen for finger holes. But this seems to dig into the deeper aspects of the phone. It is neat to see it all come together in an ensemble as well.