iPadOS 13 Advisory (updated)

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Due to an ongoing crashing issue related to system frameworks that we are unable to work around, we currently recommend that you remain on iOS 12 until further notice.

A previous version of this article offered significantly more context and detail concerning this issue and was removed at Apple’s request. We sincerely hope that doing so will improve our ability to work with them to resolve these issues so we can revise our recommendation.

Update 9/25/19: After a thorough investigation it appears that this issue has been resolved with the final public release builds of iOS 13.1 and iPadOS 13.1. Our recommendation is now similar to that of previous major updates—users who rely on forScore professionally are advised to wait several weeks for optimal stability and performance, while others should feel free to update at their convenience.

forScore 11.1

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It’s been a jam packed summer for us, and today we’re very excited to announce the immediate release of our latest free update to forScore, version 11.1.

This update isn’t just optimized for iOS 13 and the newly renamed iPadOS 13, it takes full advantage of the best Apple’s latest OS releases have to offer. From dark mode and contextual menus to document scanning and more, forScore 11.1 packs in a ton of improvements that musicians everywhere can benefit from.

For all of our users, even those who aren’t ready to update their OS just yet, there’s plenty to love—expanded support for keyboard shortcuts, annotation layer copy and paste, new options for Apple Pencil 2’s double tap gesture, and more. If you haven’t had a chance to check it out yet, our sneak peek offers a great look at what’s new.

And if you’re a forScore Pro subscriber with a device that features Apple’s TrueDepth camera system, you can try out our newest creation: face gesture page turning. Our favorite part of developing forScore is being able to combine innovative hardware features with practical software improvements; we think this is one of the best examples yet and we can’t wait for musicians everywhere to try it out.

Thanks once again to all of our customers, and especially to our incredible beta testers for helping us get ready for this big release. We couldn’t do it without you.

forScore 11.1

Available now for iPad, iPhone, and iPod Touch

iTunes File Sharing Update

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Earlier this year, Apple made a big announcement about iTunes: they’re discontinuing it on the Mac with macOS 10.15 (a free update coming in October). Instead, its responsibilities are being split up by media type into the new Music, TV, and Podcast apps. That’s left some of our users wondering about iTunes’ File Sharing panel, a long-standing tool used to copy files between an iPad or iPhone and a Mac, as well as the additional syncing functions previously offered by iTunes.

When macOS 10.15 ships later this year, those functions will all still be available, but they’ll be found within Finder instead (plug in your device, open a Finder window, then select your device from the sidebar). We’ve been beta testing macOS 10.15 all summer long, and while Apple hasn’t finished working on this transition, it’s been a painful one. The file sharing panel wasn’t available at all for months, and even now it’s incomplete, missing basic functionality like the ability to select multiple items.

We hope that Apple will make some progress on this front over the next several weeks and that the final version will be more complete, but we know that many of our users rely on this panel and we weren’t just willing to wait around with our fingers crossed. So we took matters into our own hands and built our own version of the File Sharing panel right into forScore Backup Utility. It works exclusively with forScore, but otherwise offers all of the same functionality and more: you can preview scores and even rename them without losing your annotations or metadata.

Some people think we have Apple’s ear, and unfortunately that’s just not the case. We know about as much concerning Apple’s plans as the average consumer does, so sometimes we have to make a tough call and put in the extra hours. In the end, though, we think we’ve created something valuable and we hope you find it to be every bit as capable (if not more) than the system functions it replaces.

forScore Backup Utility 1.1 is a free download for macOS 10.14 or higher, and the new File Sharing functions require forScore 11.1 or later.

forScore Backup Utility 1.1

Available now for macOS 10.14 or later

Minimum Requirements

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With iOS 13 right around the corner and iPadOS 13 coming later this month, we’re getting ready for our next big forScore release and wanted to announce some upcoming changes to forScore’s minimum requirements that affects a small number of people: forScore 11.1 will require iOS 11 or later, meaning the iPad (4th generation), iPhone 5, and iPhone 5C will no longer be compatible.

Once we release forScore 11.1, new customers will not be able to purchase and install forScore on those devices. However, if you purchase forScore 11.0.4 now you’ll be able to continue using it as long as you like and you’ll also be able to re-download and install that version at any time if needed.

We’re proud to serve a wide range of musicians and we know that any update to our apps’ minimum requirements can become a barrier to some; we take these changes very seriously and only raise these requirements when we can no longer serve all of our customers adequately, as is the case now. We appreciate your understanding.

Updated 9/18: A previous version of this post stated that forScore 11.1 would require iOS 12 or later due to a major issue with Apple’s developer toolkit—this issue has since been resolved. As a result, forScore 11.1 will require iOS 11 or later and not iOS 12 as previously stated.

iOS 13 Music Box Updates

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Today we’re proud to announce the immediate availability of free updates to all of our Music Box apps: Pitch, Please!, Beat Keeper, Cue, and TuneWave. Each of these apps has been optimized for iOS 13 and iPadOS 13, TuneWave and Cue now take advantage of Dark Mode, Beat Keeper and Pitch, Please! feature home screen shortcuts and expanded support for keyboard commands, and more.

All of these apps are available for purchase separately or at a discount as part of the forScore Music Box bundle, and of course all four updates are totally free for all existing users so be sure to check them out on the App Store!

Pitch, Please! 2.7

Available now

Beat Keeper 3.4

Available now

Cue 1.5

Available now

TuneWave 1.2

Available now

Nocturne 1.2

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Nocturne 1.2, the latest free update to our MIDI recorder, is available now on the App Store. Optimized for iOS 13 and iPadOS 13, Nocturne takes advantage of new system features like contextual menus to provide easier project management and sharing. This update now supports drag and drop gestures so you can move tracks between projects and, on iPad, import or export MIDI files from/to other apps. Version 1.2 also adds keyboard shortcuts so you can instantly access most of Nocturne’s common functions and settings (hold the command key to see all of the available commands).

Nocturne 1.2

Available now for iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch on the App Store.

Sneak Peek: forScore 11.1

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Today we’re very excited to give you a sneak peek at our next major version of forScore, version 11.1. This free update packs a lot in, thanks in part to the hard work Apple is doing to push iOS forward. From dark mode to contextual menus, we’ve adopted the latest and greatest enhancements and spent months tweaking things to get them just right in time for iOS 13’s release, most likely coming next month if history is any indication.

We’re jumping in on day one with iOS 13, but all users will benefit from many other great enhancements like expanded keyboard shortcuts, copy and paste support for annotation layers, and the ability to switch annotation tools with Apple Pencil 2’s double tap gesture even when you’re not in annotation mode.

There’s even more for forScore Pro subscribers, though: users with a device sporting Apple’s TrueDepth camera system can put those sensors to good use with our brand new face gestures that let you turn the page with head or mouth movements. It’s not an experimental feature, these gestures are powered by a highly refined system designed from the ground up to work for a wide range of musicians. We can’t wait for our Pro subscribers to try it out.

Check out all of the new features here and, if you’re able, consider becoming a beta tester to try out early versions and help us work through any remaining bugs that pop up as Apple continues testing and rolling out their own updates.

Thanks to all of our customers for helping us create the best version of forScore yet, we can’t wait to release it and other exciting updates later this year!

forScore 11.1 Sneak Peek  

iOS 13 Public Beta

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Today Apple released the first public betas of this year’s major OS updates. That includes iOS 13, also known as iPadOS 13 (purely a marketing distinction at this point, they’re still the same thing under the hood), as well as macOS 10.15. As always, we strongly discourage users from installing these betas if they rely on our apps professionally or if they are unable to deal with a bug-ridden and incomplete experience. We can not offer support for beta versions of iOS, so while your bug reports and feedback are always welcome please do not expect changes, fixes or workarounds for these issues until the fall.

Since Apple’s WWDC announcements we’ve been working very hard to take advantage of their latest software improvements and we’ll have much more to say about that later this year. In the mean time, we’ve gotten a lot of questions about what Apple is changing—specifically when it comes to iTunes: these changes do not affect any users who haven’t installed today’s macOS 10.15 beta and they haven’t yet been finalized so trying to document them at this point would likely cause confusion and be unhelpful. We’ll provide more information, if needed, as we approach the general release of these updates.

What Apple has said publicly at this point is that iTunes on macOS is being replaced and the device syncing and file sharing functions currently found within it are being moved to the Finder. Apple has also said that “iTunes for Windows would continue on its current state” and should not be seeing any significant changes this fall. That’s all we know for now.

Summer is our busiest time of year, so we appreciate your understanding and patience as we work through everything to be ready on day one with incredible free updates to all of our apps later this year.

forScore Updates

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It’s been just over a month since we released our latest major update, forScore 11, and we’re very grateful for the tremendous reception it has gotten so far. It was one of the biggest updates we’ve ever done and it’s great to see that work deliver a better experience to musicians everywhere.

Since then we’ve been working as fast as we can to fix bugs and improve features based on user feedback. Today we’re releasing another batch of changes with forScore 11.0.4, and there’s one thing in particular that we wanted to discuss in more detail than usual: variable width drawing.

We spent a great deal of time creating and testing forScore 11’s new variable width curve drawing algorithms that take full advantage of the sensors in Apple Pencil and Logitech Crayon to create more dynamic results. They produced better looking markings and, based on every metric available to us, were relatively comparable in speed to the older techniques we had been using.

Once 11.0 was released, however, we started to hear from customers who were experiencing long delays when tapping “Done” to save their annotations, occasionally resulting in crashes and lost markings. Although we never saw anything like this in testing, we immediately disabled the feature on certain older models that seemed most susceptible and we added a troubleshooting option so any user could revert to the original method if needed.

This workaround helped those people who knew about it, but the majority of affected users don’t check this website or reach out to us directly and instead just live with the issue. That’s not okay with us, so forScore 11.0.4 defaults to using the older drawing methods and allows users to opt back in to the newer version if they like (open forScore’s settings panel and enable “variable width 2.0” in the Apple Pencil section).

Our goal has always been to make the best sheet music reader we can, and no matter the underlying issue it’s obvious that this wasn’t servicing that goal. We’re continuing to investigate why this feature works so beautifully for most people and yet causes major problems for others, and once we know more we’ll decide how to proceed while doing everything in our power to maintain and rebuild the confidence and trust you’ve placed in our app. To everyone affected, we sincerely apologize.

Earth Day

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Today is Earth Day, the annual celebration of our world and a reminder of the care and stewardship it requires of us. Humanity’s impact on our environment has never been so potent, and although the way we address that is a topic of fierce debate, we can all agree that we’re in this together.

Our app has an impact, too, enabling our customers to reduce costs associated with producing and distributing paper sheet music. We don’t collect any information from our customers so we may never know just how much paper we’ve saved together, but we’re proud to know that forScore has had a positive impact, no matter how it’s quantified.

Saving paper is a big benefit to what we do, but it’s not the only way we reduce our carbon footprint. Many major companies regularly release updates to their apps based on an internal cycle—even when there’s nothing notable about the new version. They push app updates that are a hundred megabytes or more to most of their users’ devices for virtually no reason, wasting an incredible amount of bandwidth and energy.

We keep forScore as small as possible by only including third-party frameworks and code when absolutely necessary, and we only release updates when we have a reason to. Right after a major update, like the recent release of forScore 11, that means you’ll see a lot of quick updates as we fix bugs and tie up loose ends. After things settle down, you might not hear from us for months while we work on the next big thing.

On a global scale, forScore is just a tiny drop in the bucket but every little bit helps and we’ll never stop trying to find ways to be considerate, thoughtful, and have a positive impact on the world around us.