This evening, Katie Wardrobe, author of the Midnight Music website and blog–as well as MuseScore specialist and trainer of music technology for musicians (not just educators)–posted a YouTube link to Notion Music’s upcoming notation app in her Twitter feed:
Here’s the actual link to the video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t9YVh1MnQ3Y
We all knew it was a matter of time before the bigger players in music notation entered the iPad market. Both Avid (Sibelius) and MakeMusic (Finale) show awareness of the iOS market with their offerings (Avid Scorch & SmartMusic Inbox), which is “handwriting on the wall” of future offerings on the iPad (and other devices).
Symphony Pro, thus far the only true music notation app for the iPad, has been out since January and has been progressing nicely since its introduction. It’s had eleven months, hopefully, to establish a customer base that will allow it to weather the coming product from Notion as well as the inevitable offerings from Avid and MakeMusic.
For the record, Notion isn’t the largest music notation software company, but it has successfully introduced a program called “Progression” which is an iPad notation app for the guitar. They e-mailed several times inviting me to write a review of the app, but I don’t do enough with guitar (in music education in particular) to have done justice to the app. It may have been, however, a smooth way to get used to iOS for the introduction of this app. I was always intrigued by the Notion desktop/notebook application, but never followed through being a Finale user. The desktop/notebook version really advertised the playback features (samples from the London Symphony Orchestra). It will be interesting to see what they’ve done with the iPad version…as well as to see what they may have “borrowed” from Symphony Pro.
I’ve always mentioned that I think one of the main reasons we haven’t seen an Avid or MakeMusic notation product is because those programs are so dependent on keyboards and mice. The entire UI has to be changed of those programs to allow for note entry and editing. Perhaps Notion is small enough that it could nimbly make those changes. Wouldn’t it be interesting if Notion’s path to “main stream” status was spurred on by an iPad app?
Big factors will be the cost of the app as well as the size of the app (those professional samples cannot be small!), not to mention “minor” things such as user interface and speed of the app.