Collab is an experimental music app from Facebook, and the company just launched it for people living in the United States with an iPhone or iPad. We first heard about Collab in May 2020, when the social media giant launched it as an invite-only beta.
Created by Facebook’s New Product Experimentation Team, Collab lets you make music with your friends when you can’t be together in one place – a situation that many people are all too familiar with this year as well due to the current pandemic.
When you open the Collab app, you’ll see a stream of “collabs,” each including three 15-second videos – of different musicians and / or singers – playing in sync. Select the one you like the most and have fun with it by swiping through any row to bring up a new video clip created by someone else. This will change your composition slightly, but it will automatically stay in sync, allowing you to experiment with slight variations of the same song. If you find an artist you like, you can also receive notifications for new downloads.
If you’re feeling particularly creative, you can save your own contribution for any song that’s already on the app and upload it for others to use, or start a whole new collab for the community to benefit from.
“ Collab automates the complexity of audio and video synchronization so you can easily produce a final composition that you love, ” Facebook says. “ With Collab, you feel like you’re playing with the band from the comfort of your room. The most important factor: no musical experience is required – if you know how to swing, you can create collaboration”.
Not yet integrated with Facebook
The beta test allowed Collab developers to make improvements to audio sync, discovery algorithms, and sharing processes. The enhancements also include the ability to use external audio interfaces to integrate music from electronic instruments such as keyboards, guitars, and drums into your recordings.
The app isn’t directly integrated with Facebook (at least not yet), but you can export finished products to your Instagram story (as well as other platforms, including TikTok) from the iOS share window. Collab is free on the App Store, and you can download it today if you live in the United States.