iPad May Support USB Audio Interfaces via Camera Kit
According to Create Digital Music, the iPad may be capable of supporting USB audio interfaces using the iPad Camera Accessory Kit, shipping later this month from Apple. The camera connection kit’s main purpose is to download photos from your digital camera to your iPad using either USB or an SD card. If this report is true, the USB connection will also allow audio devices that are compatible with the USB Audio Class standard to connect to the iPad.
The iPad’s potential as a consumption device has been well documented. It is great for viewing your photos, listening to your music, watching your movies, and surfing the internet. This development would enhance the iPad’s status as a creation device. Users would be able to record guitar, vocals and more with only their iPad, a 3rd party app, and a standards compliant audio interface. The iPad’s portability and touch interface may help it to become a powerful yet portable music mixing or performing studio.
Unfortunately, most audio interfaces are not currently USB Audio Class compliant and require their own drivers to run properly, although major devices from M-Audio and Roland do support the standard. Further, Apple has not yet officially confirmed this functionality, and the feature cannot be tested until the iPad Camera Accessory Kit ships at the end of April. Prospective iPad musicians will have to wait until then to learn more.