January 10, 2012 at 12:52 pm

CES: Ion Audio Ups the Ante with iPad Learning Keyboard, Piano Apprentice

ion audio piano apprentice ces 2012

One of the neatest things we saw at last year’s CES was Ion Audio’s line of iPad-docking keyboards. This year, the company is displaying a new version on the CES showroom floor that looks like a big improvement; it was enough to take home a “CES Innovations Design & Engineering Showcase Honors 2012″ award.

Ion Audio Piano Apprentice, which costs just $99, runs on four AA batteries, and includes stereo speakers and a 25-note keyboard that lights up the notes you’re supposed to press. This keyboard works with the iPad, iPhone, and iPod Touch, and the companion app can also be used on their own with a touchscreen keyboard, but clearly, the optimal configuration would be an iPad and this glowing-keys keyboard. The glowing keyboard mimics other standalone models we’ve seen at cheesy electronics stores, but those lack iPads to show you sheet music, video tutorials, and other niceties.

Observe, as my pals and former employers at Wired.com check out the Ion Audio Piano Apprentice on the CES 2012 show floor. (I would probably have shot some video myself, but I’m not going.)


  • Anonymous

    As one who has taken piano lessons for 4 years, I can honestly say this may be more helpful than having a piano teacher in person!  What a truly creative idea the people at Ion Audio have come up with: truthfully, what makes this so helpful is the fact that you can see the hands of the “tutor” for technique WHILE you’re playing.  Innovation is so important to industry success these days, and I am certainly proud to work for a company that shares the prestigious award that Ion Audio won.  DISH worked hard to find a way to record up to 6 programs at once on the new Hopper multi-room receiver which landed them the “CES Innovations Design & Engineering Showcase Honors 2012″ award.  PrimeTime Anytime records the 4 network shows between 7-10 PM on one tuner which is a first in the industry.  I will consider with my wife the iPad-docking Keyboard for our daughter’s Birthday now that we have an iPad in the family.