iPad/iPhone DJs: Don’t Update To iOS 7?

Hot off the presses, a note of warning from Native Instruments advising users of Traktor DJ (and we would guess, iMaschine) to hold off on updating to iOS 7 on their iPhones and iPads. The new operating system, released to the public earlier today, apparently has caused a number of performance problems for audio applications. So far only NI has issued a public release – no word from any other DJ or producer audio app developers at this time.

Here’s NI’s full notice sent out this morning:

iOS 7 is here, but it seems there are serious issues concerning audio. TRAKTOR DJ, along with many other audio apps, is experiencing performance and stability issues on iOS 7. Initial testing has also revealed general audio performance issues that can affect some Native Instruments hardware. If you use TRAKTOR DJ or audio apps, we recommend you don’t update just yet.

Our tests have found that some iOS compatible hardware products from Native Instruments currently exhibit functionality errors when used within the iOS 7 environment. Compatibility issues include: random disconnections, iOS device restarts, distortion and chopped audio as well the Master Out audio playing on all outputs (making pre-listening impossible). Also Metadata Sync between TRAKTOR DJ and TRAKTOR PRO will no longer function once a device is upgraded to iOS 7.

Due to the extent and severity of the errors mentioned above, we are advising Native Instruments product users to postpone upgrading their devices to iOS 7 until the issues are resolved. This is extremely important as a device can NOT be downgraded to iOS 6 after upgrading to iOS 7. Native Instruments and Apple are working together to find solutions to these problems as soon as possible. Further announcements will be made as soon as the issues are resolved.

Considering that iOS 7 has been released for developers since June, it’s surprising to see a launch-day warning like this show up – we’ve asked other major audio app developers about any issues they’ve encountered and will update this post with relevant info.

Update (12:37PM PST): Propellerhead (makers of iOS apps Figure and Rebirth) reports all is well in their world – via Kalle Paulsson, their Product Manager for Apps: 

Retronyms shares a bit more about their apps – Tabletop and iMPC:

Here’s Novation on their apps – Launchpad and Launchkey:

Serato on their Serato Remote app:

We also were linked to this comment on Discchord by DJ Player’s developer, Gábor Szántó:

Every time Apple releases a major iOS version, the developer forums are full with audio related problems, as Apple actively develops the audio components and bugs happen.

There is another problem, not audio related but affects almost every app: the user interface handling is also changed, and not just graphically/aesthetically, but on the “programming side” as well. This step is quite big, larger than before. They introduced larger than usual changes in the API, some of them need developers to re-think established concepts. For example it was ordinary to do certain things differently when a new major version comes out. This time there are so many it’s not about writing different code, but a need to re-think how things should work.

Add these two factors together (UI + audio), and now you see that audio app developers need to take quality time with the new system.

In our experience last week using the gold master of iOS7 and Traktor DJ on an iPad 3rd generation, it seemed to work fine in the studio. As always, our advice is simple: if you need everything to keep working the way it is for a gig or performance  – wait to update! 

Let us know your own experiences with any DJ or audio app on iOS 7 in the comments below. 

Get DJTT love in your inbox
Drop your email address here, we'll send you news, tutorials, and special offers once a week.
Unsubscribe at any time. we won't sell your data, ever.