Developer: Howcast
Price: $1.99
Version Reviewed: 1.0.3
Device Reviewed On: iPad

iPad Integration Rating: ★★★★½
User Interface Rating: ★★★★☆
Re-use / Replay Value Rating: ★★½☆☆

Overall Rating: ★★★½☆

I used to play the guitar but I was never the greatest at it (I’m a piano guy). I never took any formal lessons. I just learned to read guitar tabs and started learning songs. I’d like to start playing again, but I don’t have the time or money for lessons and I don’t want to just play with tabs again. Guitar Lessons from Howcast is the perfect solution for me.

As a quick note, it seems that all of the videos on Guitar Lessons from Howcast are available on Howcast.com here. But for $1.99, the interface and progressing tracking in the app is well worth the money.

All of the guitar lessons in the app are presented by Ivan Max. He does a great job and covers a ton of ground. There are even videos on how to play individual chords! He starts from the most basic level with the parts of the guitar and how to hold it to more advanced techniques. Max even has videos describing how to buy different types of guitars like electric or acoustic. It’s pretty much the perfect companion the the beginner guitarist.

The app itself tracks the progress of the musician-in-training. The progress screen gives a brief overview of how many videos in each section were watched. The progress can be reset at anytime. Also, if a video comes up that for some reason isn’t immediately necessary to watch but should be remembered later, the ability to “star” a video is provided. A list of starred videos are always readily available on the sidebar along with each section, the search bar, and progress.

The pages that pop up when the user hits a chapter button or a video strongly resemble the Twitter app but don’t work nearly as well. I find myself wanting to swipe to the right to get out of a video and get back to the list but it doesn’t work that way. It doesn’t take away from the app but it’s a simple fix that I wouldn’t be surprised to be addressed in a minor update.

While the videos are available on the Howcast website, for only $1.99 it’s well worth the organization and tracking it provides. I’ll take a dedicated app to using a browser any day.

Posted in: iPad Apps and Games, iPad Music, Reviews

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