Under The Microscope

Celebrate Rogue Amoeba’s 20th Anniversary

20 years ago this month, Rogue Amoeba unveiled Audio Hijack 1.0, the very first version of what has become our flagship product. To celebrate that anniversary, we’ve got a great deal to share with you. But first, take a gander at what things looked like way back on September 30, 2002:


Audio Hijack 1.0

The design seen above surely looks dated to modern eyes. While the audio capture wizardry Audio Hijack provides has only grown more popular, pinstripes and drawers are very much out in 2022.

When it comes to technology, 20 years is a long, long time, and many other things have changed since we got started in 2002. At that time, the iPod was quite new, and just starting to transform personal audio listening. That revolutionary device’s features have since been subsumed by the iPhone, to the point where Apple no longer sells any iPod devices at all.

In a similar fashion, Audio Hijack has expanded to encompass new features initially seen in now-retired products, including the play-thru of input devices originally found in our freebie LineIn, audio pausing and rewinding initially demonstrated in Intermission, and full-on internet radio streaming first offered in Nicecast. From those simple beginnings shown above, Audio Hijack has evolved into a robust platform for a myriad of audio needs.

Our lineup has grown substantially from that first product, and now comprises a suite of powerful Mac tools to help with almost any audio task imaginable. The inspiration for many products and features came from our users. Since our very first release, we’ve incorporated feedback from you into our development process.

Airfoil is a prime example, as it was created after a deluge of user requests for a better way to send audio to the AirPort Express (another retired Apple device). Originally locked to receiving audio solely from iTunes, the AirPort Express’s capabilities were greatly enhanced by Airfoil’s ability to stream any audio to it. We even saw so many requests for help from PC users that we developed Airfoil for Windows for over a decade as well.

Similarly, it was user requests which led us to make our simple audio editor Fission. The need to edit recordings created with Audio Hijack (or our charmingly simple recorder Piezo) was fairly obvious, but there were already many solid audio editors on the Mac. The focus on speed and simplicity was what really made developing Fission worthwhile, while the magical lossless editing of MP3 and AAC files that our audio wizard Alex put together has made it stand out.

As our lineup grew, we saw ever more varied requests. The desire for users to move audio between applications led us to create Loopback. Rather than needing big and expensive hardware, Loopback’s cable-free audio routing makes it possible to get audio anywhere you need it on the Mac, like a virtual mixing board. Podcasters embraced Loopback right away, but in recent years, it’s also proven to be very helpful for remote workers looking to improve microphone audio or bring in other sounds to VoIP calls.

On the other hand, we did not receive many requests to create a soundboard app. Despite that, Farrago has shown itself to be tremendously useful for podcasts, live performances, and much more. In this case, we had a good sense that this tool could be useful to many of our existing users, and that’s proven to be true.

And sometimes, an idea takes multiple tries. Currently, SoundSource is one of our most popular applications. However, several of the ideas found therein were first implemented in a little-known application called Detour, which we developed between 2003 and 2005. A variety of factors meant that Detour never found much success, in part because it was made too soon. However, with changes in technology and more resources at our disposal, capabilities like adjusting volumes and routing audio to different devices on a per-app basis live on in SoundSource.

In 2022, Rogue Amoeba is going stronger than ever. Every day, our audio tools help countless Mac users create podcasts, enhance video calls, and so much more. Of course, most of our time is spent focusing on the future (including support for MacOS 13 (Ventura), coming very soon). But as the date of our twentieth anniversary approaches, it’s nice to celebrate, by taking a few minutes to review the past and reflect.

Speaking of celebrating, we also thought we’d use this occasion to provide a very special discount. You may know that we seldom run sales on our products, instead striving to offer them at fair prices every day of the year. However, we figured that temporarily providing an even lower price would serve as a small way of saying thanks to existing customers, and help new users join the fold as well.

Through the end of September, everyone can save 20% on every purchase from Rogue Amoeba, in honor of our 20 years in business.

You don’t need any coupons or special links to save. Just make your purchases through our store before the end of the month. Whether you’re a long-time user who’s had your eye on another one of our tools or you’re new to Rogue Amoeba entirely, you can get a great deal on some great software.

A business sustains itself on purchases from customers, but the relationship we have with our users has always involved much more than mere transactions. For 20 years, the countless ways you utilize our products in both your work and your creative endeavors has inspired us to keep innovating and improving. We’ve shipped an astonishing 898 software releases since 2002 (with 888 of those being free updates – that’s 98.9%!). Every single one of them was made better by input from our users.

The feedback we receive from people who make use of our tools helps us get better with every release, and the tips and tricks you share with others bring our tools to an ever-growing user base. We’re incredibly appreciative of everyone who’s been a part of our first 20 years. We hope to be helping you with your audio needs for decades more to come.

P.S. Pass It On

Word of mouth from satisfied customers has always been our very best form of advertising, and we hope you’ll share the news of this celebration. Post on social media, mention us on your podcast, or perhaps hire a skywriter. However you spread the word about this sale, we’ll be most grateful.

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