Become a hip-hop superstar with AutoRap (not really) | Download Product Review - CNET Download.com

Become a hip-hop superstar with AutoRap (not really)

AutoRap can't turn you into a legit rapper, but it can totally make a rap-inspired song using a recording of your speech.

Right when you launch AutoRap, you can get started by tapping your screen and speaking. The app immediately records your speech until you tap the screen again to stop it. After a few seconds of "rappification" (AutoRap's proprietary syllable-mapping technology), the app will replay your recording, autotuned, timing-adjusted, and laid over one of its generic rap beats.

Off the bat, you get two free beats to play with: Turkey Burgers and OneOneOne (I've never heard of them either). You can use these as many times and as often as you like. If you want more beats, you'll have to go into the song selector and choose either a freestyle beat (originals, with no lyrics) or a beat from a popular artist. As of now, AutoRap includes beats from songs by Snoop Dogg, B.o.B., Nicki Minaj, 2Pac, and others. Unfortunately, though, you'll need to purchase credits to access any of these. What's more, if you want to reuse the beat for another recording, you'll have to pony up another credit.

There are a couple of different ways to use AutoRap. In Talk mode, you can simply say anything into the microphone and let AutoRap do all of the work. You don't have to rhyme, be on pitch, or exhibit any musical talent at all. Just speak, and the app will turn it into a rap. Otherwise, there's Rap mode. With Rap mode, you can play a premium song by an artist, and see the lyrics scroll across the screen. You can do your best to rap along, but in the end, AutoRap will adjust your pitch and timing to fit the original track. From either mode, you can save your recording and share it with friends.

AutoRap's technology works surprisingly well. I had tons of fun listening to the app rehash my name, textbook jargon, and other nonsensical, non-rap speech. One thing I found disappointing, though, was that beats must be purchased repeatedly. It would've been nice to simply purchase a package of beats for unlimited use. Still, even with the two free stock beats, AutoRap is fun and totally worth a try.

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