Recordium: See What You Hear

With hundreds of thousands apps, the app business is incredibly tough. Every app has atleast a dozen competitors with more showing up at a breakneck speed. This situation becomes even more muddled when an app’s functionality falls in line with the stock app or a market leader who is kind enough to distribute apps free of charge.

There aren’t a short supply of voice recorder apps in the App Store. All iOS devices ship with one and then there is the built-in voice recorder that Evernote offers. So, why would someone want to pay for an app that does the same? It doesn’t make sense, right? But, you’ll change that statement, just like I did, after trying out Recordium.

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Look and Feel

Recordium rocks a flat user interface that’ll make Sir Jony Ive real proud. It’s gorgeous to look at and is very intuitive to use. The word intuitive is misused often, however, even with so many powerful features up its sleeve, Recordium is extremely fun to fiddle with.

The problem with utility apps is that the user already knows what the app should do and if the app doesn’t get the job done smoothly, get ready for a one-star review. Recordium carefully tackles high expectations right from the launch screen.

Folders for organization and record quality settings.

Folders for organization and record quality settings.

The app comes with a bunch of folders to help you organize your recordings and you can create as many folders as you want. Existing folders can be renamed or deleted with a simple swipe gesture. Recordium is not just a voice recorder, but masquerades as a powerful editor as well. The beauty is, the app masks the editor and the design elements that come with it until you need them.

When you launch the app, you are supposed to either start a recording or manage your recordings. Of the three tabs at the bottom, only two deal with recording! This kind of retrained user interface design is key to make a feature rich app elegant and user friendly.

Recording and Organizing

Just tap on the record button to get going. It would be totally redundant if I say that the UI is absolutely brilliant. But it really is and I cannot help it! Recording starts instantly at the touch of the button and you can name it either after the recording is complete or while the recording is in progress. The text input field is a bit tiny, though.

A recording in progress.

A recording in progress.

Flanking the record button at the center are two totally amazing features. To the left you have the controller to adjust the volume of the recording level. And to the right is the auto pause controller that helps you automatically pause a recording if there is nothing to record for a set duration.

Controllers for adjusting recording audio gain and auto pause settings.

Controllers for adjusting recording audio gain and auto pause settings.

Once you are done with the recording, you might want to add a note detailing your thoughts. Add tags to make the files easier to find even when using multiple folders.

Editing a Recording

There is no way for anyone to not raise their eyebrows after handling the Recordium editor. Cutting and trimming are all good, but it’s the number of ways you can add value and metadata to a recording that blows our collective minds away.

Adding notes and tags.

Adding notes and tags.

You aren’t restricted to leaving a note about the recording. The app lets you annotate sections of the clip with notes, images and tags.

Picking the portions of a clip to annotate is extremely smooth and you’ll easily be able to select the right portion of the recording down the last second.

Fabulous annotations.

Fabulous annotations.

On the playback part, you can quickly rewind or fast forward using the dedicated buttons. It would be great if this duration is more than five seconds. From the settings screen, you can control the quality of the recording. This will come handy if you are running low on space.

The Wishlist

The Wishlist

There aren’t any cloud sync options and you will have make do with the Wi-Fi export facility. You might want to jump on the wishlist screen and vote on features that want to see in Recordium. I voted for Dropbox, iCloud sync and password protection features. A practical idea that I wish every mobile app developer adopts real soon.

Final Thoughts

Recordium is what perfection looks like. The developers have got a ton things right. From the perfect niche to the flat user interface and an incredibly simple workflow, the app stands as a great case study for app developers across the globe.

I was stumped when trying to find downsides to point out in the app — there hardly were any. If there is one thing that didn’t convince me was the flat UI. I am not a big fan of the concept in general and I strongly believe every app shouldn’t sport it just because Apple changed its mind. Recordium would have turned out even more gorgeous with a skeuomorphic design.

Also, at a time when app store prices are plummeting, much to the chagrin of developers, $1.99 seems a bit low for an app of this caliber. But, the customer in me is rejoicing despite that observation. So, go ahead and grab Recordium. It’s time to ditch one more stock iOS app!


Summary

Recordium lets you highlight a track while playing or recording audio, helping you focus on the most important parts of your recordings.

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