They say that fashion is cyclical. The same goes for technology. Sure, most cellphones are the epitome of trendiness, but just think how cool you’ll be if you harken back to the 1980s with AirCassette, an app that turns your iPhone into a cassette player.
The $1.99 app, available in the iTunes App Store, displays your music in handwritten script on a background designed to resemble a cassette tape. The reels actually spin and you can create and share mixtapes with your friends via e-mail or Facebook, just like we used to do back in 1986. Finnish programming house Majasalmi, infamous for their Russian Roulette iPhone game, designed and built this decidedly more low-key app.
Watching a cassette tape spin on the iPhone’s high-resolution display is oddly calming and, thanks to digital compression, the audio is far superior in AirCassette than it ever was on my Sony Walkman.
The app is AirPlay compatible and has its own iTunes music interface, allowing you to build queues on the fly. It comes with multiple cassette designs that resemble popular blank tapes of the era, including a bright-red style that is reminiscent of West German rock and roll cassettes circa 1989, perfect for recreating the heady days of the Velvet Revolution.
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Originally published on The New York Times’ Gadgetwise blog.