GUMI (グミ) is a Japanese VOCALOID developed and distributed by Internet Co., Ltd. as Megpoid (メグッポイド), which was initially released June 2009 for the VOCALOID2 engine. There has since been three installments developed for the VOCALOID3 engine, one that includes an update of the VOCALOID2 voice bank. Her voice is provided by Filipino-Japanese female singer, Megumi Nakajima (中島 愛; Nakajima Megumi).
The name Gumi is the voice provider Megumi Nakajima's nickname from her childhood. The software name, "Megpoid", was taken from the provider's name "Megumi." The second half, the "poid", is short for "like Vocaloid," the full implied name of this product is "Megumi-like Vocaloid."
Less experienced overseas fans often mislabel GUMI as a "Megpoid" rather than a "VOCALOID" and sometimes dismiss that she is a VOCALOID altogether. Another notable mistake is labeling her name as "Megpoid Gumi" or "Gumi Megpoid". The explanation for both these mistakes is the confusion over the naming of both software package and VOCALOID. The same issue occurs with Camui Gackpo and his software Gackpoid.
The original avatar character of the software was drawn by the illustrator Masami Yuuki (ゆうきまさみ Yuuki Masami). Her design is often said to be influenced by Ranka Lee's character (one of the first roles done by Megumi Nakajima as seiyuu). Ranka Lee's main outfit (which she wears for the notable song Seikan Hikou) contains the colors green, yellow, and orange. This has never been officially confirmed, but is still a popular assumption with both Japanese and overseas VOCALOID fans.
Her belt buckle incorporates the Tenori-on device's design.
GUMI's Megpoid English illustration has a different direction to the past GUMI illustrations.
Concerning GUMI's age, during the Extend development, Noboru once tweeted that there was a rough age preferred for GUMI, set around the teenage years. However, no official age was ever given to GUMI in her various designs. When writing about the Extend, it was noted the voice could be considered 'extensions' of the age conceptualized for GUMI.
Megpoid Talk is a speech software version to allow GUMI to do narration was discussed in October 2012 on Noboru's twitter account, but no details were given at the time. However, there was later a demo on December 24, 2013, and a release date set for January 16, 2014.
This is a speech software which will allow GUMI to talk for the first time. It allows delicate editing of her vocals. It is powered by the engine "FineSpeech Ver 3".
GUMI originally did not have much marketing, but has since gained enough popularity for further possibilities. She is Internet co, Ltd's most successful VOCALOID and since the launch of VOCALOID3, has seen an increase in merchandise.
Originally, GUMI songs were not allowed to be sold on Karen-T, though this was later changed and INTERNET Co., gave permission for both her and Gackpo in 2009.
Her English version is aimed more at the English speaking market. This is the first English capable vocal to be purchasable from the VOCALOID shop itself, as well as the the developer's own website. Her vocal can be bought by anyone in the USA or the UK, however other English speaking countries still cannot purchase it directly.
Gumi struggled to build popularity against the Character Vocal Series and was considered to be "nothing special" when first released. She was, however, quicker to gain popularity in comparison to Camui Gackpo.
By 2010, GUMI's popularity was on par with Crypton Future Media's voicebanks and had out sold her predecessor Camui Gackpo, becoming the most popular and well known non-Crypton VOCALOID. In 2011, her usage grew and in a number of weeks she would have even more songs in the top 100 rankings than some of the Crypton Future Media vocalists.
Gumi gained a stable popularity by August 2011 according to google trends and the stability is most likely linked to her entry into the VOCALOID3 era vocals. Her popularity peeked in March 2013 when she received a sudden increase in interest, but returned to its normal popularity a month later. This was most likely due to the release of her English version in the previous month (Feb, 2013), this was the only time during the VOCALOID3 era Gumi had a notable increase of popularity.
In 2011 an independent report was made into the popularity of VOCALOID, and revealed that most VOCALOIDs had less than 1,000 videos uploaded to Nico Nico Douga in 2011 between July 1st and December 15th. GUMI had managed to succeed in grabbing more attention then most VOCALOIDs, and at 2,107 uploads, had the third highest video upload count relating to a VOCALOID. At 9,538,464 views and 929,810 mylists, GUMI was the VOCALOID to receive the second highest number of views overall. Based on average views, she managed to come out on top with 4,527.04 views (and 441.3 mylists) on average per video. When the mean count was performed on the VOCALOID results, GUMI remained on top with 485 views and 34 mylists per video, and was the only one besides the Kagamine's to successfully be on all lists performed in the report.
In 2012 a cosplay competition was held for a TV program in France, with the aim to find "the French version of Gumi". 1,200+ entries were submitted, despite the fact that the entries being submitted were to win a Japanese version of Megpoid.
A survey released in 2015 showed that Gumi was the second most popular Vocaloid in 2015 on website Nico Video. However, her popularity was only between 3rd/4th of that of the most popular vocaloid Hatsune Miku.
With 7 voicebanks in total having been released at this time, GUMI has the 3rd largest selection of vocals on sale for VOCALOID™.
GUMI has proven to be quite a popular VOCALOID for MMD model makers and has several models, which is notably more compared to most other VOCALOIDs. One of them is ISAO's model, available by purchase from the Windows 100% magazine and MMD Starter Pack magazine.
The Megpoid English vocal was the 22nd product released for VOCALOID3; putting the total amount of VOCALOID3 releases on par with the number of VOCALOID2s.