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Apple Kills Sonoma AudioCopy/Paste, Retronyms Saves It

In a rare turn of events, this "Apple Kills X" headline is somewhat accurate! The music app world hasn't seen declarations of Apple killing an app in a while, but iOS 7 looks to be offering plenty of new opportunities to dust off the old murderous title.

Reader Will brought my attention to a post over on the Loopy forum from Loopy and Audiobus developer Michael Tyson stating, "Sonoma's AudioCopy will no longer work on iOS 7."

I contacted Michael for comment and he directed me to this published beta document revealing the sad truth.

iOS 7 Beta 3 Changelog - UIKit Notes:

+[UIPasteboard pasteboardWithName:create:] and +[UIPasteboard pasteboardWithUniqueName] now unique the given name to allow only those apps in the same application group to access the pasteboard. If the developer attempts to create a pasteboard with a name that already exists and they are not part of the same app suite, they will get their own unique and private pasteboard. Note that this does not affect the system provided pasteboards, general, and find.

Michael got into the details for me, and explained the situation as it stands today.

"What it means is that all pasteboards except the general one are now sandboxed, and are private to the app that created them.

Sonoma's ACP uses a custom pasteboard – not the general pasteboard, for which this limitation doesn't apply – which means that the ACP pasteboard is now sandboxed to each "application group"; I'd say this means that apps have to have a common ID prefix to access each others' custom pasteboards. So if you use it to copy audio, you won't see the copied clip in any other app.

Copying audio to the general pasteboard still works, though, but of course it means you can only ever copy one clip at a time, without the 11-clip history that ACP provides.

General pasteboard still works fine. Apps that use it will continue to be able to copy audio. The most recent version of Sonoma's ACP SDK uses the general pasteboard in addition to the named one, so that will work (but the 11 clip history won't)."

- Michael Tyson, A Tasty Pixel/Audiobus

My emails to Sonoma have gone unanswered, but yesterday they issued the following statement to AudioCopy/Paste developers.

Dear MAPI partners,

Good news for those of you who implement AudioCopy and/or AudioPaste in your apps. Retronyms, Sonoma's long time partner, are taking on development of the AudioCopy and AudioPaste SDK. Look for an updated ACP SDK with iOS 7 support, license agreement, and more information from Retronyms soon. You may contact Retronyms with questions.

- Michelle Wright & The Sonoma Team

I had quite a lot of questions, so I called up Retronyms co-founder Dan Walton to ask them! We talked about the importance of the ACP history in the workflow of power-users, which they seem to fully understand and appreciate. I couldn't get them on record about what exactly they have up their sleeves, but they do plan to make an announcement soon. In the meantime this is all they can tell us to ease any fears:

"We are aware of iOS7 issues with AudioCopy and it's history menu. Our team has been hard at work to fix these issues and improve AudioCopy in general. Any day now we will release a new AudioCopy SDK that is compatible with iOS7. This update will have an improved history feature and many other improvements for developers and musicians.

We are extremely excited about this and know that AudioCopy is very important to musicians. We are asking for the support of the user community and the developer community as we make this transition over the next few weeks."

- Dan Walton, Co-Founder Retronyms

Reader Comments 36

If only ACP could support more than 11 files.

August 30, 2013  | person_outline tom_tm

Please ask them to fix the audio export bug in their impc app for Pete's sake!!!!

August 30, 2013  | person_outline Kobamoto rin

So how would this apply to apps that currently support acp when devices are updated to iOS 7? Will they just crash if you try to select it? Looking forward to the update but not really sure if I wanna give up acp yet. Hopefully Retronyms will be able to clear this up soon, also really looking forward to seeing what inter app audio has to offer!

August 30, 2013  | person_outline Christan

@Christian: As far as I understand, apps using the Sonoma ACP will not crash in iOS7, but the pasting app won't be able to access the same pasteboard as the copying app, it will just appear to be empty (or actually, contain only the sounds copied in the same app).

To make this work again across apps means that every app using Sonoma ACP will need to update with the new SDK, which will probably take a while..

August 30, 2013  | person_outline Jonatan Liljedahl

iOS7 is going to be fun I'm sure, but as with many Apple moves there will always be casualties along the way; the beast of progress has no emotion or moral values, it doesn't care about our habits and preferences, it knows, in time, we will come around and follow, like children under the spell of the Pied Piper, our grievances forgotten in the glow of new shiney! :)

August 30, 2013  | person_outline Baddcr

Nice work scoop!

Retronyms, we're counting on you guys.

August 30, 2013  | person_outline Will

I hope Retronyms can go through all the hurdles Apple puts up. Copying one audio file at a time will suck. I use Sonoma and the 12 slots extensively, also use the bulk copy to Sonoma function in Audioshare. Why kill a good function and not provide an alternative, Apple?

August 30, 2013  | person_outline ChrisG

i will wait until ios7.1 comes out as going by ios5-ios6 they all had problems & some quite bad & were all updated within a few months

August 30, 2013  | person_outline andre

@andre I usually wait until the X.1 release too but this time, if inter-app audio is even part of what I hope it will be, it will be very hard to resist jumping immediately.

August 30, 2013  | person_outline Will

@Jonatan -- will the AudioShare SDK still work under iOS 7? It looks like it uses the general pasteboard. I was planning on integrating that into upcoming releases, and if I can use that as a conduit, I'd be happy (because seriously, who in their right mind doesn't have AudioShare?).

I'm not a big fan of the Sonoma/Retronyms SDK -- just way too complex for what it actually needs to do. If the development community rallies around a new standard, I'd like it to be a little bit cleaner and simpler (like, you know, maybe the AudioShare SDK?).

August 30, 2013  | person_outline Fessaboy/Secret Base Design


Ah yes, the joys of planned obsolescence.


Apple is downright annoying when it comes to this and their tablets. I'm at the point where I'm about ready to bow out, and just accept it when email stops working, or Safari stops working, or feature "fill in the blank" stops working. I don't know, I just can't keep up. Don't really want to keep up. Just leave me the fuck alone Apple and stop screwing with my shit.

August 30, 2013  | person_outline Jesse

Like Apple is really going to make an update that makes email or Safari stop working. Get a grip....

August 30, 2013  | person_outline Zymos

Great article. Nice reporting Tim!

August 30, 2013  | person_outline Simon

we didn't give them the deed to our ranch (or buy a 128gb ipad and cloud storage) so...
they're gonna saw up our pasteboard
and then?
they're gonna blow up and fragment our memory with individual pasteboards so it looks like humpty dumpty, after the fall
and then?
they're gonna throw our apps under the train
and then?...and then?
ah ah...and then along came retronyms


August 30, 2013  | person_outline a1

Hey Tim, wouldn't be Discchord without a lil bit of discord, right....?

August 30, 2013  | person_outline Zymos

Yup... ;)

I don't mind the occasional off-topic comment, or giving each other a little shit... But that quickly escalated with too much of both, so I just wiped the whole thing.

More importantly ask retronyms to fix the horrible bug in tabletop that can ruin your hearing

August 31, 2013  | person_outline Jeremy

Damn, I missed it... :))

August 31, 2013  | person_outline Baddcr

@Fessaboy/Secret Base Design
Yes, fortunately AudioShareSDK does use the general pasteboard, so it should survive iOS7.

August 31, 2013  | person_outline Jonatan Liljedahl

would be bad if theres no alternative to the sonoma ACP.On the other hand,let's see what exactly apple will deliver with inter app audio.Maybe on someday...in the near future we don't need it anymore ;-)

August 31, 2013  | person_outline crabman

@Jonatan -- fantastic! I think it's safe to assume that anyone who needs to copy audio between apps will (or should) have a copy of AudioShare. The SDK is tiny, clean, easy to implement, and does exactly what it needs to do. The Sonoma SDK is much too complicated for what it does, IMO.

Consider me an evangelist for the AudioShare SDK. I had hesitated to even look at it, because I already had the Sonoma stuff working. With the potential iOS 7 changes, it motivated me to look, and then it took about 20 minutes to get the whole thing integrated.

Devs -- check it out -- you'll be glad you did. https://github.com/lijon/AudioShareSDK

August 31, 2013  | person_outline Fessaboy/Secret Base Design

Maybe it's worth saying that Apple is only making sure that iOS 7 is a more secure operating system. They're sandboxing quite a few things and shutting down a few other vectors that could be used to compromise an iOS device.

August 31, 2013  | person_outline Sebastian Dittmann

It just makes me wonder... Doesn't it occur to anyone at apple that a sandboxed multi-pasteboard is of little use to most everyone? Might as well do away with it all together if it's only going to work internally within each app.

The doors on my automobile are a security risk, so the manufacturer has decided that there will be no more doors in future models. Owners will have to adjust to the lack of access to the interior.

Can one of you developer types explain what the AudioShare SDK will do for us users? If apps have implemented it, will it restore an ability to copy/paste multiple files? Does it mean that moving audio with multiple files will have to be added into AudioShare first, and then moved elsewhere, adding an extra step to the process of moving multiple files from one app to another?

I believe I will hold off on iOS 7 for a while and see how things shake out. I usually adopt right away, but this time there seems to be too much at stake.

August 31, 2013  | person_outline ZenLizard

I will be buying a new ipad at the end of the year but right now i have a ipad 2 & i want to keep it but i might have to sell it & the info that keeps coming out about ios7 certainly will make me wait & see what other ipad 2 users get from ios7 as you cant go back to ios6,Apple do say it will work on ipad 2 but i think the first ones to do it will be guinea pigs to the rest of us.

August 31, 2013  | person_outline andre

@ZenLizard -- the AudioShare SDK can send to or import files from AudioShare.

The way it works is.. you're in app A. You select the file you'd want to export, and press a "send to AudioShare" button. Pretty much what you'd do with AudioCopy. AudioShare will open and catch the file (you'll need to double-tap to get back to app A).

Move to app B, and press an "import from AudioShare" button. AudioShare opens, shows you all the files it's got, you pick one, and there's a button in AudioShare that will send the file to app B (and also automatically returns you to app B). AudioShare can hold on to as many files as you want (plus it has DropBox, SoundCloud, and 40 bazillion other useful things).

Currently, there's no support for sending multiple audio recordings in a single step -- but it seems like something that some folks want, and I'm sure Jonatan could add this to the SDK.

August 31, 2013  | person_outline Fessaboy/Secret Base Design

@ Fessaboy/Secret Base Design

Thank you. There is no doubt that AudioShare is a very useful and – for me – essential app. The SDK sounds like a reasonable alternative to multi copy/paste if I understand you correctly. Hopefully all our favorite music apps will adopt it ASAP.

I think it would be great if AudioShare adopted a few of Hokusai's features for it's "Tools" selection, like zoom in/out on waveform for setting edit points, fade in/out, compress with adjustable gain reduction, welder, reverse, and maybe pitch/time stretch/shrink. I could then use AudioShare exclusively. The fact that Hokusai doesn't align edit points to zero-crossings is incredibly disappointing. I'm glad that AudioShare does.

August 31, 2013  | person_outline ZenLizard

Great picture Tim! PacMan is back!

August 31, 2013  | person_outline Piotr

yeah, that picture is a total freak-out! well done! :)

September 01, 2013  | person_outline gatearray

Ha, thanks guys! I didn't think a goofy meme would fit the tone of this article so I had to get creative.

I stole the Apple with the teeth though from a google image search for evil apple. I just masked out the background and put the ACP icon in!

+1 for devs implementing the AudioShare SDK. I've had it in Echo Pad as soon as Jonatan released it, it's quick to implement and works great.

September 01, 2013  | person_outline HoldernessMedia

Zen even though audioshare would be great with a proper cutting tool e.t.c,at the moment from what i gather jonatan got updates for Yellofier,AUFX Dub & im sure i read hes helping on IVCS3 & i saw a comment saying the cutting tool was a last minute thing added to app so looks like Hokusai for now

September 01, 2013  | person_outline andre

@ andre

I ended up seeing that comment also. What Jonatan explained certainly makes sense, but I hope he does either create a seperate app or make the additional tools part of an IAP in AudioShare, as he suggested he might. At least he knows how important it is to make edits fall on zero crossings. I made the request to him for additional tools (like zoom, compress/expand with gain adjustment, and zero crossing edits) whether or not they are part of AudioShare. I contacted Wooji Juice and asked them to lock edit points to zero crossings as well, or at least make it optional. With luck, one of them will get it done. I for one am sick and tired of the pops and crackles that Hokusai introduces to trimmed clips.

September 02, 2013  | person_outline ZenLizard

Arrrg! Correction: AudioShare already locks edits to zero crossings. I don't know why I fouled that last post up, unless it was caused by sleep deprivation.

It should have read: "...additional tools (like zoom, compress/expand with gain adjustment, fade in/fade out, and join with cross fade using the standard slope choices)..."

September 02, 2013  | person_outline ZenLizard

I just heard back from Wooji Juice. They informed me that "snap to zero crossing" has been available since 2012. It is switched on or off in the iPad main system settings. They suggest I may have encountered a bug, since it is on by default and I never turned it off, yet I am getting an audible pop at the trim point almost every time I perform a trim or delete command.

Let me ask you all... does this happen to any of you? If you are trimming a longer clip to make a short loop, does the beginning or end of the clip make a pop or crackle when you play it as a loop? Even when the two ends have been faded to silence (supposedly)?

September 02, 2013  | person_outline ZenLizard

@zenlizard not usually, no.

Worst thing about iOS is the sandboxing of files. Second worse thing is the never-looked at settings app (for app settings).

September 02, 2013  | person_outline Will

Thank you, Will.

I feel like a complete idiot! Instead of letting the scrub cursor pull to the spots it "wanted" to, I was forcing it to the spots that visually seemed to be the zero point, so I was actually overriding the snap and giving myself all manor of headaches. I thought the scrub cursor was just jittery and imprecise, when it was actually snapping to all the zero crossings the whole time. I should have realized the app is smarter than I am.

September 02, 2013  | person_outline ZenLizard

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