Stockholm, Sweden (August 11, 2020)—It’s long been a dream of musicians to play together in time remotely via the internet, but latency issues have tripped up many a device or service that attempted to make such collaboration possible. Now Swedish software company Elk is planning an open beta program in Q4 for its upcoming Aloha by Elk service, which it claims will use high-speed internet and 5G networks so musicians can play together essentially in real-time in a virtual shared studio, rehearsal room, stage or classroom, with the option to stream performances over social platforms.
Latency from currently available video conference services can be irregular and reach half a second or more; both effects make it unsuitable for enabling remote musicians to play together virtually. Elk claims Aloha brings audio latency to a few milliseconds, allowing users to connect from different locations and interact essentially in real time.
This is reportedly accomplished through the pocket-size Aloha device and accompanying proprietary app. The low latency hardware device teams Elk Audio OS with an audio processor to reportedly keep users in sync with audio. Meanwhile, the Aloha app, which runs on smartphones, tablets and computers, provides users with control over monitoring, effects and recording tools, and also serves up a typical video chat experience and options for streaming over social channels.
The device is enabled to work with 5G providers that Elk has been working with during Aloha’s development. Elk first showcased its Aloha 5G technology concept in 2019 at the Mobile World Congress exhibition together with Ericsson and Vodafone, and then around the world at various events, including a live concert in Spain with Vodafone. Santiago Tenorio, head of Group Network Architecture at Vodafone Group, noted, “Our highly responsive, low-latency fast fiber and 5G networks, combined with services like Aloha by Elk, will take interaction to the next level. Musicians, and even fans, will be able to instantaneously collaborate from different parts of the world. This will spur a new wave of creativity and diversity in the music industry and other sectors. It is an exciting time despite the current difficulties.”
Robert Mehmet Ikiz, an independent drummer and Yamaha Artist, reported, “Aloha allows me to continue to collaborate with other musicians from the safety of my home, from rehearsing songs to grooving and improvising. Most recently, I played a set in real time sponsored by Yamaha with a fellow musician, Nils Landgren, while we were 670 kilometers [450 miles] apart, using Aloha. Not only were we able to play music in real time, but we saved on travel and studio costs; this would be impossible without Aloha.”
Elk plans to launch a limited Aloha open beta program in Q4 2020; more information on the program is available on its website.
Aloha by Elk • www.alohabyelk.com