Audio apps suffer under iOS 7 — upgrade at your peril

ios 7 audio apps

As a natural-born lemming, I hurl myself headlong at whatever beta versions of software are floating around. I figure that it’s better to be in at the deep end and face the challenges that early releases throw in my general direction. And I’ve been rocking iOS 7 from the first beta without complaint bar Plants vs Zombies II hanging, which frankly is a huge problem. But it seems that others haven’t been so lucky, and now Native Instruments has issued a warning to NOT upgrade just yet.

Here’s the exact wording of their despatch:

Dear DJ,

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.

Please see this Knowledge Base article for more details.

Please also note that an iOS device cannot be downgraded to iOS 6 after being upgraded to iOS 7.

We’ll let you know as soon as these issues have been resolved.

Best regards,

The Native Instruments team

NI isn’t alone of course — Audiobus issued a similar warning earlier:

Hi folks,

We’re on the cusp of iOS 7, and I’m here to urge caution: If you rely on music apps, please don’t update yet.

iOS 7 audio is not ready. There are a wide variety of bugs that are causing performance problems, crashes and other problems in a large number of music apps.

This may change in the future, but until we see a few point releases for the OS, I strongly urge you to stick with iOS 6.


That said, DJ Player apparently works just fine. Gábor Szántó, owner of iMect, just took to Facebook to proudly brag about how DJ Player remains unaffected, which is understandable given that Gábor does his level best to write his own code outside of Apple’s APIs.

So how has this state of affairs happened? If only there was a way that software makers could develop and test their apps before the release of the final OS… oh wait. But the SDK doesn’t mean that things are guaranteed to work once the final OS is unleashed. That, as ever is very much in the hands of Apple, that notoriously has not given audio much of a priority to audio. Advances were made with iOS6, but it seems that more changes have yet to be filtered out to the devs working on 3rd party audio apps.

So for now, the general advice appears to be to restrain your own inner lemming and wait for Apple to fix stuff, and let that subsequently filter that down to the app developers.

Me? iOS 7 is installing on my iPhone and iPads as we speak. Old habits and all that.

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