Microsoft's Groove Music Maker is the coolest thing they didn't announce today

One of the most popular apps on OSX is GarageBand. It's a simple but powerful digital audio workstation exclusive to Apple's Mac computers, and Microsoft has never really had a competing solution. That could be set to change.

In the Windows 10 Creators Update trailer, a "Groove Music Maker" app was shown for a brief few seconds, complete with track layering, audio sampling, BPM controls and even mic recording.

Judging by the incredibly brief clips, it could be that this app simply isn't ready to be demonstrated on stage just yet. It's hard to speculate from the few frames available, but it does seem fairly simplistic when compared to the likes of GarageBand or even free Win32 solutions like Audacity.

If Microsoft is planning to bring music creation software to the platform, it needs to compete with the best and brightest digital workstations out there. GarageBand itself is more than likely the primary target for feature parity, as the software remains one of the most popular reasons for creative types to dive into the OSX ecosystem.

When (or if) we'll get this app is completely unknown, but its omission from today's event is a little mysterious, given the avalanche of filler Microsoft put between their biggest announcements. We can only hope it doesn't suffer the same fate as the forgotten Movie Creator (opens in new tab) app. Hopefully, we'll learn more sooner rather than later.

Jez Corden
Co-Managing Editor

Jez Corden a Managing Editor at Windows Central, focusing primarily on all things Xbox and gaming. Jez is known for breaking exclusive news and analysis as relates to the Microsoft ecosystem while being powered by caffeine. Follow on Twitter @JezCorden and listen to his Xbox Two podcast, all about, you guessed it, Xbox!

  • Well there we go
  • Speaking of movie creator, will there be a UWA for it?
  • what app did the lady use to scan that sand castle on HP elite X3 during "paint 3D" presentation? plz, I really want that one.
  • Don't think it is available yet.
  • No, I mentioned that we need this!.. We need an update that focuses on A/V creation. Fun stuff!
  • Yes! I mentioned this! This is exactly what I was talking about!
  • i bet thy use that for the sp5 presentation early 2017. to create music on the go, whenever, whereever
  • True !
  • Its raining Apps!!!
  • Calm your ****. It's not raining anything
  • It is raining where I'm at, does that count?
  • Chill, it's just his catchphrase.
  • Is it raining men?
  • L
  • Super excited to try this out.
  • Super excited! I keep an iPad 2 around just for Garage Band. That is literally all I have ever booted it up for since Surface RT launched. It would be great to get rid of that POS.
  • Hoping that it's a true UWA, as in exclusively using UWP APIs and not a win32 app deployed through the store. Because this would be great in Continuum and to be able to load up your files on phone for very small edits and previewing for example. Can't tell whether the Paint 3D app is a ground up UWP app or a Win32 app wrapped up to the store, but it makes sense for that to not necessarily be on mobile right now due to the processing and graphics power needed to run the 3D aspect, but a simple-ish music editor like the one pictured could run from a phone without issue
  • I'm betting they will release a competitive solution
  • It would need to be better than Pro Tools and Pesonus Studio One.
  •   No. There's no reason for them to fight the Logic/PT/DP/Sonar/Studio1/Reason/FL Studio fight. What a waste. the garage band segment is much better angle to sell their new PC. "every app you need to start creating, comes with the new creator PC" as opposed to "spend 499 for ProTools".  
  • wasn't there a similar thing in xbox music with the launch of surface 2/pro 2. I also remember there was special type cover for it.
  • You're thinking of the Surface Remix Project. Unfortunately, that never took off.
  • Anything coming to W10M?
  • An Elite X3 got demoed scanning a real object into a 3D object. So anything? Yep. How much? No idea.
  • Yes...that was cool...I even said to a that's an Android phone.  Nope, HP Elite X3...nice!
  • This wouldn't directly compete with Aduacity as Audacity is just a waveform editor and not a DAW to the extent of FL Studio or LMMS. Also, what audio editing software is complete without a video editing software? I'm going to guess that both Movie Maker 10 and Groove Music Maker will be announced either at the same event, or within a few days of each other. As I was typing that sentence I realised that Microsoft is still using the "(Media Type) Maker" naming scheme, which is a good sign.
  • Audacity comparison was mainly due to the app's apparent simplicity.
  • Ok. That makes sense.
  • Have you seen or tried a hands-on session using the app that scans in items as 3D objects? Eager to know whether that was actually running live or if it was actually scanned in before the event using something like a Kinect and what we saw on the phone could have just been a proof of concept/recorded demo
  • Cool. Would be great to have an easy to use app like this for quick projects. I just installed ProTools (the crippled free version) yesterday after not having used Protools in a couple of years and quickly remembered what a buggy frustrating program it can be.
  • I've been using Cakewalk SONAR for just short of a hundred years.  Their Platinum edition is excellent - FAR better than ProTools.  I hope they do a UWP version in the future.
  • I just installed the sonar le version that came with my Roland keyboard and will give it a try.
  • Intriguing. I hope it also has good integration with the main Groove Music app. They're building a really good, solid platform with Groove. I'm exciting to watch it evolve.
  • On this day when they were focusing on their own lines of innovative products, I'm sure they just didn't want headlines to focus on a "me too" addition.
  • I hope they try to compete with the likes of Logic and FL Studio, not just a basic app with no real "DAW" features.
  • They won't. The DAW market is very saturated now with 15 to 20 mature software to choose from. So I doubt MS will venture into this, unless they buy a DAW company like Apple did.  
  • Probably, but it'd be cool
  • They just need to create something enough to force other DAW software to look into the app Market in MS OS of course.
  • This would be a welcome development if they put some effort into it. Microsoft seems to have lost its way with consumer programs, and has apparently forgotten that an operating system is just the start. People need programs so they can actually do something with their computer. After apparently abandoning Windows Essentials, the value proposition for Windows has really declined, especially since the Store apps that have replaced the desktop programs have beed so god awful. The destruction of Windows Movie Maker - which was on the verge of excellence with its Vista HD version - was a case in point: a large WMM community basically died when Microsoft decided to make a stripped down version in Windows Essentials, and then an even junkier movie app. Maybe Groove Music Make will reverse this trend.
  • Mainly a Logic user myself, but I've tried StudioOne free version on my Dell and was pleasantly surprised by its simplicity. Their sound libraries are wonderful. After Apple bought Camel and incorporated Alchemy into Logic, I never needed anything else on my Mac from DAW perspective.
    If MSFT wants this to be successful they better invest in some good libraries via acquisition. If this is targeted at beginners, they will usually love lots of good quality presets before diving into the complexity of making your own sounds. That is how I learned synths, trying to understand and recreate presets.
    Having a native DAW, albeit simple, on W10 is so exciting! iLife and iWork helped OSX to get on firm footing. W10 could use similar boost in the music, sound, video dept.
  • I wouldn't really compare this to audacity since that's mainly used for recording direct input or mixing existing tracks. This looks like you can actually create beats. I wonder if this has been a closet app since back when they released that dj attachment for the surface rt.
  • A
    E Make this app full version free.
  • We should stop begging for anything to be given to us for free. Developers, including Microsoft, need to eat and deserve to be paid for their work. This incentive also keeps developers updating software and apps. When there is no incentive, no updates. Look at the app store.
  • Work and olive are free on a MacBook. Co sobering how much a surface pro or book costs, asking for free isn't unreasonable. Microsoft nerds a base package of software on the OS that is good enough for enthusiasts. Right now, Windoes is Terribly lacking in that aspect.
  • So, You mean free app developers didn't get any money. :| think about CANDY CRUSH SAGA
  • I want this, I've been waiting for a simple, nice DAW software and I didn't want to buy Sonar
  • Maybe while they're at it, they can fix Skype?
  • I still use Movie Creator on my phone. C'mon Microsoft, breathe some life into it. It's a great little tool.
  • I want this it would be nice to have a simple sound editor!
  • Would be nice if they had some quality hardware, like an interface to go with it . .
  • Since IOS has been mentioned already I don't feel too band mentioning Android... there is a great Garageband rip off - I mean equivalent by Samsung called Soundcamp - literally only discovered it last night. It has a four track mixer, multiple instruments, midi support plus mic recording and piano roll/editor. Hopefully the new app from MS can approach these features.
  • Wow, caught that during the live feed! Awesome that you guys mentioned it. Would be horrible if they went with that branding, but it would be nice to have Garage Band and iMove alternatives for Creators Update.
  • "GarageBand itself is more than likely the primary target for feature parity, as the software remains one of the most popular reasons for creative types to dive into the OSX ecosystem"??! Is that really true? Garage Band is not a "real" DAW (like Cubase, Pro Tools and Apples own Logic).  My _guess_ is that the number of people switching to OSX due to Garage band is very low. BUT, wow Microsoft did really show some nice products. I think this was the first Microsoft presentation for at least 3 years that gave me the WOW feeling!
  • How about Microsoft buying a 'new' player in the DAW market, namely Bitwig.
    ​It wouldn't be the first time they had a little romancing together, I remember a demo of Bitwig running on Surface 3.    
  • Really excited for this app!!
  • Been waiting for them to make an app like this for a while.
  • As a former Protools user on Mac to a Studio One user on PC, All the Surface hardware they announced is perfect. Studio One with the Surface Studio is a dream come true.
  • That program looks absolutely terrible.
  • There are a number of second tier vendors pushing quality DAWs that I don't understand why MS didn't just license one of these programs (for the record, I use and recommend Mixcraft)...
  • It seems like this would be another step in creating its own ecosystem. Hopefully, they can come up with something that can compete with Garage Band. They could probably use that new dial hardware to add even more creative control to this product.
  • I always considered Garage Band to be something for the wanna-be's.  I've been a long-time Cakewalk user, currently relying on Sonar X2 for my studio work. That said, the only real advantage Garage Band has had is the fact that it ran on the iPhone and allowed musicians too cheap to buy real pedals to route their guitars through it and load amp/pedal kits.  If Microsoft wants to compete in that arena then those are the kinds of features they'll need to support.  And right now you can't route sound through any Windows device for processing and output.
  • Well, for those of us that aren't professionals and don't have access to higher end equipment, it serves its purpose. If you want to label us as "wanna-be's" then right on, I guess.
  • No. It is very good for people like me. A creative that make all the arts but don't have time to learn to control every profesional program. You can compose melodies and they sound always good.  
  • Great, now there is a much better free alternative for LMMS which hasn't received a lot of popularity due to the name, if they just changed the name to Multimedia Studio (available for free for Windows and Linux) it would have better acceptance. Anyway I think this Groove Music Studio and Paint 3D are the best creation apps for artists and musicians I've seen from Microsoft since Windows 95, not joking
  • Is the only thing that I miss from OS X (Mac user from 2000 to 2015).