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Ukulele of the Future – Futulele?

This just in… There’s a new ukulele coming, one that can surf the web, check your email and even take your calls.

It’s called the [sociallocker]Futulele from Amidio, Inc., and it’s an app for your iPad. Or is it?

Utilizing both an iPad and an iPhone in a custom case, the Fututlele is actually an ukulele synthesizer that allows you to strum on the iPad while fingering chords on the iPhone. The app even lets you record your performance – let’s see your old-fashioned wooden ukulele do that!

Not yet ready for retail, Amidio is still looking for manufacturers for its innovative case design – but to quote the immortal words of Futurama, “Welcome… to the world of tomorrooooowwww!”


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BeatNik Reviews: GuitarToolkit

I first heard about GuitarToolkit while in the recording studio, laying down the chords for my soon-to-be-released product, Speak Guitar. My very talented friend and guitar coach, Tim Kleiman, was the “talent” and I was producing, recreating what I had done for the smash best-selling product Speak Ukulele. You see, I’m only a student of guitar myself – my first instrument being the uke.
But I digress…
We needed to have a consistent authority on the chord fingerings for the program we were creating. As you know, there are many, many variations and positions to fingering any chord – but I needed to be sure the fingers matched the recordings we were making. I asked Tim if he had anything and he casually mentioned he had “something” on his iPhone that would work perfect.

That something was Agile Partners GuitarToolkit.

GuitarToolkitIn the studio, we relied heavily on the chord chart feature of this app, checking the fingering variations against the list I had of 168 chords that needed to be recorded. The interface was easy to use, and the digital strum feature helped us preview some of the off-sounding chords (A augmented anyone?). The now-familiar slot machine style interface made navigating to the chords a snap.

GTK's Chord Selector

Another feature that we welcomed quite often was the very precise tuner. The tuner uses a needle calibration and a red light/green light indicator to let you know when you’re in tune. It also has numerous presets and even customization options for unlimited tuning styles.

GTK's Tuner GTK's Custom Tuning

Now, I’m not going to go into all the features of this incredible app – they have a website that does a much better job of explaining everything than I can do here. But, let me finish my review by telling you what happened next… It really knocked me out!

I got home from the studio and bought the GuitarToolkit app for my own iPhone – a meager $9.99 at the Apple App Store.

I then began to check the settings to be sure they would match what we had recorded. I touched the small guitar icon in the lower right corner and a new screen opened. The first option was “Current Instrument”. Current instrument???

I touched the “6 String Guitar” icon and it revealed the mecca discovery of this app! The grand-poobah of cool features! In the list that presented itself were the following instruments – all completely full featured just as the 6 string guitar option had been:

  • 6 String Guitar
  • 7 String Guitar
  • 12 String Guitar
  • Bass
  • Bass (5)
  • Bass (6)
  • Banjo
  • Mandolin
  • Ukulele

There it was – UKULELE – my first love, nestled in among the mandolins, banjos and basses! I proceeded to spend about 30 minutes exploring all the ukulele options (yes, they were all there… all the tunings, all the chords, the fretboard map, the tuner).

Whatever you are playing, dear friend, do yourself a favor and put this app on your iPhone or iPad. For ten bucks, it’s the deal of the century!

Product: GuitarToolkit for iPhone/iPad
Producer: Agile Partners

BeatNik’s rating: SWEET!