Developer: 純平 Wada
Price: $1.99 Download on the App Store
Having recently toyed around with the MiniPiano app from JYProduct, I couldn't help but think that there was a little something missing from the formula. Don't get me wrong, sliding your fingers across piano keys is great fun, but I felt like there was no objective, no aim, no goal. Luckily, I had to look no further than its stable-mate FingerPiano.
FingerPiano has broader range than MiniPiano (just over 3 octaves), which helps remove the "toy" feeling. The piano app also offers a scrolling notation system reminiscent of the piano roll found in both Logic Pro and GarageBand. Loaded with scores from the likes of Bach, Mozart and Chopin, plus popular classics like The Entertainer, Joy to The World and Auld Lang Syne.
FingerPiano adds the level of immersion absent from MiniPiano. It's one of my favorite ways to indulge in a little musical creativity when I'm on the run.
However, FingerPiano also has its fair share of flaws. First off, the touchscreen and small keys don't offer much in terms of precision, which often leads to the butchering of masterpieces. Secondly, the notation system doesn't indicate the exact length or timing of the notes, so getting it to sound just right is often difficult. Finally, when playing notes with a spread too large to display on the screen, the resulting side-scroll animation is so disorienting you lose most if not all sense of rhythm.
These of course, are issues easily addressable in the future, and by watching the current rate of the iPhone development, I'm willing to bet it'll be sooner than later.
Even with these small hiccups, FingerPiano proves itself to be a great musical app; all it needs is a little tuning.