One of the first iPhone Development Software Houses
These days, with hundreds of thousands of apps available for the iPhone, and the App Store a huge commercial success, it is difficult to remember a time when the iPhone was just a mobile phone with a web browser and a few utility applications. But even before the App Store opened a few people were writing iPhone applications and distributing them for free. It was into this community (termed 'jailbreakers' after the procedure that had to be performed on the iPhone to allow one to run third-party software) that MooCowMusic first began releasing applications.
Their first, 'Pianist', released six months before the AppStore opened, was not only the original iPhone piano, but also the first widely accessible multi-touch piano on any mobile platform. The reception to the app was incredible. Not only did Pianist represent a fun toy but also a serious music-creation tool in its own right. Soon user videos appeared, showcasing music created using Pianist, and it became clear that there was a huge demand for mobile instruments. Most notable of these new 'iPhone-only bands' was a group of Austrian film students who named themselves 'iBand' and composed and performed several songs using Pianist, one of which received almost five million views on YouTube.
Pianist was followed by 'Drummer', a low-latency portable drum-pad with multiple kits and the ability to load your own samples. Then 'Guitarist', which brought an entire guitar fretboard to the iPhone and allowed credible renditions of famous songs such as Stairway To Heaven. And finally 'Band' which contained a number of instruments that could be recorded together into a full song.
Such was the demand for quality apps at this time that these four apps were downloaded over a quarter of a million times each, and MooCowMusic became one of the most well-known third-party developers on the iPhone.
As demonstrated during the Steve Jobs' Keynote Speech at WWDC 2008
The underground success of Band attracted the attention of Apple, who were due to unveil their new iPhone SDK that would allow developers to produce and distribute iPhone applications officially to a much wider audience. On the 9th June 2008 MooCowMusic appeared onstage during Steve Jobs' WWDC Keynote Speech to demonstrate Band as an example of the new range of third-party iPhone apps to be made available in the App Store. Although sharing the stage with nine other major companies such as eBay and Sega, MooCowMusic held its own, and out of all the third-party apps received the largest applause.
App Store success
When the App Store opened in July 2008, MooCowMusic had two applications on sale: Band and Pianist. Sales were strong, and both apps remained high in the 'Top 100 Apps' list in iTunes for several months. Guitarist was next to be updated and released in the App Store, again performing extremely well. The iTunes 'Top Selling Apps for 2008' chart listed Band, Pianist and Guitarist in both the 'Top 10 Paid Music Apps' and in the 'Top 100 Overall Apps'. To meet popular user requests, the next two apps were 'Organist', a conversion of Pianist with church and electric organ sounds, and 'Bassist', a guitar app especially tailored to the sound of the bass guitar. Both apps did extremely well on launch, and charting high in a large number of countries.
Continuing success on the iPadPianist Pro was available at the launch of the iPad, and was top music app in the US, UK, China, Australia and France. It was made available by Apple as an in-store demo at point of sale for the iPad internationally, and recommended by such media as the New York Times, Rolling Stone Magazine and The Independent. It featured in a global TV advertising campaign for the iPad entitled "iPad is Musical", where not only was it the only music app to be shown, but it was used to play the theme music for the advert. It was even used by legendary band Squeeze to perform a piano solo live on US television.
During our time in the App Store, MooCowMusic has received a large interest from the press, and a fair amount of publicity from Apple itself. Our apps have been featured in a number of TV adverts for the iPhone and iPad, a six foot high Pianist icon graced the entrance to WWDC 2009, and Guitarist was shown being purchased in the iPhone 3GS Guided Tour video. Both Band and Pianist have been listed at apple.com as staff picks, and all our apps have been 'Featured' in iTunes. Our apps have also been used by Apple to promote the launch of almost all their iOS devices.
In addition, our Internet presence has remained consistently high, not just through global mention of our company name in blogs, news articles, and review sites, but also in more subtle but no less impressive ways. At time of writing, a Google Images search for the word 'piano' gives an image of Pianist as the third most relevant hit. A search for the words 'Drum Machine' gives an image of Drummer as the fourth relevant, 'App Store' shows Band at number 2, and 'iPhone' shows Pianist as the number 34 relevant image.
In addition to providing significant functional updates to our existing applications which are available for free to those who had already purchased those apps, we are hard at work on our next application. more details on this will be revealed closer to launch.