Despite Jay-Z’s best efforts, it looks as if Auto-Tune, the software that adjusts the pitch of a singer’s voice, isn’t destined for the graveyard after all.
Instead, it’s headed to the iPhone.
An application called “I Am T-Pain,” after the rapper who most recently popularized the Auto-Tune software with a liberal use of it in his songs, transforms the iPhone into an auto-tune microphone. The application was developed as a joint collaboration between T-Pain, Antares Audio Technologies, the company that produces the software that creates the vocal effect, and Smule, a start-up that develops applications for the iPhone.
Smule is the company behind Ocarina, a popular iPhone application that turns the phone into an ancient clay wind instrument.
“This is our latest experiment,” said Ge Wang, co-founder and chief technology office at Smule. “There’s no shortage of celebrity apps in the App Store, but the feeling was that a lot of them didn’t capture the essence of the artist.”
Mr. Wang said that T-Pain was a fan of Smule’s musical applications and approached him about the collaboration. They worked with Antares to develop the application.
The application, which costs $2.99, turns the iPhone into an Auto-Tune microphone, allowing users to sing alongside popular T-Pain tracks. “I Am T-Pain” comes bundled with five songs, including the radio hits “Bartender” and “Sprung.” Players will also have the option of buying more songs via the application to digitally harmonize along with.
In addition, players can create and record songs using a “freestyle” Auto-Tune effect, which can be uploaded to the Web and sent to friends via e-mail, Facebook and MySpace.