Watch out, David Guetta: these stick-on knobs will turn any tablet-toting person into a bona fide DJ. Tuna Knobs are suction-cups dials that can attach to a touchscreen and control your tablet like a DJ workstation. Dutch creator Samuel Verburg came up with the idea while interning at the Rotterdam-based design company Tweetonig.
“We loved Tuna and worked for about four months to make a real product, ready for mass production,” explains John Tillema, product developer at Tweetonig. Compatible with iOS, Android or Windows devices, the prices of Tuna Knobs will vary from $12 for a single knob to $115 for a set of 10 when they're out before Christmas. Metro spoke with Tillema to find out more.
How did the idea of Tuna Knobs come about?
While playing with all those DJ and MIDI controller apps on the iPad, Samuel missed the feeling of his "old" controllers – that nice feeling of how a small twist would really control the music, even with your eyes closed. And so, the idea of a knob for digital touchscreen devices was born. He came to us at Tweetonig and we started working together.
Today the musical industry is flogging lots of digital devices. What's the appeal of Tuna Knobs?
Well, the best part is that it can be used on any mobile device. People will be using it on top of their favorite apps. You can best compare it with a stylus for drawing or writing. You could do it with your fingers, but it is unprecise. The main advantage is getting tactile feedback on a tablet.
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Who would want to play with these knobs?
The knobs are for every DJ, producer, VJ or any other composer – professional or very early-stage enthusiast.
Do you think music is more dependent of technology these days? What is the importance of innovation for this field?
Yeah, since the iPad hit the market there has definitely been multiple streams of users. Some will always use vinyl, others will go complete digital using only a tablet. We follow these movements with great interest and actually understand the motivations of all these groups. The fact is that digital devices have made it a lot easier for people to just start expressing themselves.
Why is music so important at people's lives?
The eternal question ... I think we use it in our creative process. Working, creating and manipulating music is something that gives us inspiration any time!
When will the product be rolled out?
We don't know exactly when. Our Kickstarter funding for the project reached its goal in 21 hours, so we are definitely making the knobs and shipping them out before the Christmas holiday season. What happens after that is still a mystery. We are looking into distributors or re-sellers but for now we are focusing on Kickstarter and our backers. It might stay as an Kickstarter exclusive forever.