Figure updated – Propellerhead add Ableton Link and more to their classic iOS music app

Download from iTunes App StoreFigure logo 3One of those is one of the iOS music apps that, in some way, have helped define just what mobile music making might have to offer; Figure. With its brilliant use of the touchscreen interface and its ability to let almost anyone – musician or non-musician – making some cool-sounding electronic dance music in the blink of an eye, Figure was an instant ‘classic’.

In terms of the actual music creation process, Propellerhead haven’t added huge numbers of features to Figure since I first reviewed it but the various updates since then have improved the workflow, included Audiobus support and the potential for creating material that you can move on to other apps to develop or share with others. As such, instead of being ‘just’ a rather brilliant musical distraction, it is now also a genuinely useful musical tool.

This latest update brings two new drum kits including Bern....

This latest update brings two new drum kits including Bern….

Propellerhead released v.2.0 this time last year and this added performance improvements, new sounds and an arpeggiator function (no, the latter is no match for Thesys or Arpeggist but then it doesn’t come with the same price tag either). It also added the Allihoopa branding and musical hub for sharing your Propellerhead mobile-made musical compositions. I think it is fair to say that some users have been less enthusiastic about this element of the app but, for those that want it, it does bring a community spirit amongst the user base.

The update also adds support for Audiobus Remote triggers.

The update also adds support for Audiobus Remote triggers.

A further update – to v.2.2 – appeared on the App Store today. This brings a number of new features. Two new drum kits have been added – Bern (very solid; I like this one) and Leeloo – and the app now also offers Audiobus Remote triggers. On the ‘tweaks’ front, the all also consumes less power when used in ‘background’ mode.

Figure now includes Ableton Link support....

Figure now includes Ableton Link support….

However, perhaps the highlight new feature is support for Ableton Link. This can be enabled via the Song screen (the usual Ableton Link panel appears) and Figure will then automatically sync to other Ableton Link enabled apps. I tried this alongside the excellent Patterning and the sync seemed very solid. With Figure being a great tool for constructing a few electronic music loops, Ableton Link just makes it easier to combine the app with others in your iOS music app collection to get creative.

Figure sync'ed quite happily to other iOS music apps.

Figure sync’ed quite happily to other iOS music apps.

Propellerhead’s Figure is an absolute classic iOS music app. There are other compact EDM music production environments you should also try – iKaosilator or Triqtraq for example – but don’t miss out on giving Figure a try. The novel interface – with scale confined XY pitch pads, rhythm assisted drum part creation and some simple, but very cool, effects options that can be automated – is both a pleasure to use and easy to learn. If you have a musical bone in your body (OK, a musical bone that likes electronic styles) and you have not yet given Figure a try then you are missing a treat. Simple but brilliant – and currently also free – so what’s not to like?


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    1. Figure has had a bit of flack over the last year or so, but this update should make a lot of users happy.

      A great app and still free!

      • Hi Simon… agreed…. and it is free so it is difficult to have too many complaints :-) Best wishes, John

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