Apps

Smule’s Ocarina – Must have Application to transform iPhone into musical instrument

November 16, 2008 — by Simon Ng1

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Apps

Smule’s Ocarina – Must have Application to transform iPhone into musical instrument

November 16, 2008 — by Simon Ng1

Everyone loves free stuffs. When you’re still considering to buy your 1st iPhone paid application, this should be the top of the list: Smule’s Ocarina. For only USD$0.99. Ocarina transforms the iPhone into a new kind of musical instrument. Yes, I described it as a “new kind of musical instrument”. You can find ample of iPhone applications in App Store such as FingerPiano, Guitarist that emulates real musical instrument. Though Ocarina is flute-like, Smule is not intended to develop an application that does the same. With Ocarina, iPhone is a social musical instrument.

As a music novice, I find Ocarina truly amazing and addictive. To play Ocarina, simply blow into iPhone speaker. Ocarina is sensitive to your breath and synthesizes sound in real-time. To change pitch, you can hold down a combination of holes on iPhone screen. You can also tilt the iPhone from front to back to change the vibrato depth or tilt the iPhone from side to side to change the vibrato rate.

As Smule claimed, unlike other musical applications, there are no pre-compiled riffs so you’ll find unlimited opportunities for self-expression. For beginner, Smule also develops a tutorial website to teach you how to play song with Ocarina. You’ll find tutorials on classic music melodies such as Joy to the World, Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, etc.

Even you do not know how to play Ocarina, Ocarina is developed with a social feature. You can listen to other songs in any part of the world. Simply tap on the “globe” button in bottom menu bar. Ocarina will let you to listen songs performed by other Ocarina musicians. The user interface is very impressive, a globe view with laser stream showing where the music is being played. Definitely, you won’t want to listen to some awful songs (like mine). So, if you do not like the current song, tap “forward” button to select the next song. There are so many people playing Ocarina in other parts of the world.

For just a 99 cent, you’ll get a new musical instrument and a music player to listen other Ocarina music. I can’t think of other reasons not to purchase this paid application. To purchase the application, you can download via this iTunes link directly.



Ocarina requires your iPhone to have firmware 2.1. If you haven’t upgraded to it, consider the upgrade. Or if you’re using jailbreak iPhone, you can refer to this guide for the upgrade using QuickPwn.

What do you think about Smule’s Ocarina? Leave me comment to share your experience with other readers.

Simon Ng

Founder, developer and chief blogger of simonblog.com