Hatsune Miku is a singing synthesizer application with a female character, developed by Crypton Future Media based in Sapporo, Japan. The company develops, imports, and sells products for music, such as sound generator software, sampling CDs and DVDs, and sound effect and background music libraries.
Crypton is best known for production and sales of speech synthesis software for computer music. Its products use the Vocaloid singing synthesis engine developed by Yamaha Corporation
The Vocaloid is a tool that allows to synthetize the voice singing: it just needs the input of the text and the melody of a song. Since the Vocaloid was launched in the early 2000s, Crypton has developed several software applications, with female and male voices which were sampled from human Japanese singers. For each software the company had developed a peculiar character – in the classical manga style – which initially was probably just intended for advertising the product.
But very soon in Japan the phenomenon grew, so that these characters have become virtual, digital pop stars; Hatsune Miku is one of them, maybe the most famous.