Roland has been making electronic musical instruments for nearly 50 years and has delivered products like the JU-06A tiny portable synth, keyboards with built-in Alexa controls and mini smartphone mixers. Now, it's entering the world of mobile music-making apps. Today, the company released Zenbeats.
Zenbeats is built on Stagelight, the music-making app by Open Labs that Roland has just acquired. The app is available on mobile, desktop and Chrome, making it one of the few truly cross-platform digital audio workstation (DAW) apps. The fact that it has a ChromeOS version is pretty unique, too.
While the basic platform is free, Zenbeats offers two additional tiers. The mid-tier, Unlock, is available on Android, Chrome and iOS for $14.99, or Windows and macOS for $49.99. That comes with eight instruments, 14 effects, plugins and additional store credit. For $149.99, users can get Ultimate access to every platform -- making the app truly cross-platform -- plus 40 preset packs and 40 loop packs. Existing Stagelight users can download Zenbeats and pick up where they left off.
This may be Roland's first serious attempt at a digital music-making apps, but the company has a strong track record, and since it's building off of Stagelight, we can expect a solid product.