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I got the full version - decent virtual metronome with some design flaws
on October 26, 2013
With all the other recent reviews about getting the free instead of the paid version, I wanted to see for myself what's going on. I just downloaded the app and it appears to be the paid version (no "free" in the app title, and the metronome plays for longer than two measures which seems to be limitation imposed on the free version). I am guessing it was a glitch in Amazon's system and they fixed it. If you got the free version by error, I'd suggest going into your Amazon app cloud and delete this app, then try downloading it again. Hopefully that'll do it. Worst case, email Amazon and I am sure they'll fix it.
Now, onto the app! Creative Metronome (CM) does its job as a virtual metronome pretty well. My biggest complaint about the app is its user interface. Upon opening, CM goes to the landscape view - this appears to be hard coded, as I didn't find a way to force it into portrait orientation. The graphics, font and animation do their job, but they look a bit dated and just don't quite come together aesthetically wise. The purple and yellow color scheme is an acquired taste. Some of the color choices make the elements hard to see (for ex, the small "play" in black against the dark purple background). Aesthetics aside, I thought there was one more major issue with the UI. There are two "settings" pages, and both are somewhat hidden from the user. The first one allows you to change the animation and sounds. I accidentally stumbled upon it when I clicked on "Presets", which made me realize you can actually swipe the bottom section left-right. I had to swipe twice to get to the Settings page. Looking at the default home screen, you would never know it existed. The second settings is accessed if you press the menu/overflow button on your phone. Here, there's a flowchart on practice strategy, links to help and more apps from the developer, and an exit button to close the app. Again, there's nothing on the home screen that would suggest that there's another settings section.
On the main screen, two yellow bars dominate the screen - one on top controls the tempo while the one below controls the volume. At first I thought the volume bar, which takes up essentially the width of the screen, is a bit redundant since we can just use our phones' physical volume rockers to control volume. But after playing my guitar and piano a bit with this app, I realize the developer's reason for the bar design - it's so much easier to adjust the volume on the fly with a simple on-screen touch rather than reach to the side of the phone for the volume rocker. There's also a button at the top right corner that hides the volume control bar if you don't need it.
The app does play stereo sound clips as promised. On my HTC One, the stereo effect was present playing through the phone's stereo speakers. For all other phones, you can simply hook up to external stereo speakers via the headphone jack, and you'll get the stereo effect.
Overall, the app isn't too bad. It does its job as a virtual metronome, with a lot of ways to customize the beat to your specific needs. If the developer can polish up the user interface a bit, it would be even better. I am not sure if I would have bought it at the normal $1.99 price, but as a free app of the day, it's not a bad addition to your app tool kit.
The app only has one permission requirement (to read phone state). The installed footprint is 2.37MB on my phone - nothing too excessive.