Desktop-level video editing tools; Fresh, easy-to-use interface; Fun trailer feature; Nifty Help tool; Plenty of sharing options; Speedy performance
Limited font controls
The new iMovie for iOS lets newbies and pros create Oscar-winning magic on the go.
The new version of iMovie for iOS sports 64-bit support, simpler navigation, video effects, advanced audio tools, iMovie Theater and more. For $4.99 (free for new iOS device purchases), you can now share your videos more easily, and add new effects such as zoom, speed changes, picture-in-picture and split-screen. Here's why the new iMovie is well worth the download.
Interface and setup
iMovie's redesign makes it much easier to access the app's solid video-editing tools. Gone are the old-school neon lights and cinemalike home screen. In its place is a simple page that looks much more similar to iMovie for Mac.
Just like on iPhoto, files on your device are arranged by month in reverse-chronological order by default. Each video is represented by filmstrip frames that take up the width of the screen. A new top navigation bar offers views of Video, Projects and Theater. Also at the top are a Help button on the left, a drop-down arrow for viewing options and a share icon on the right.
While the video-editing area is largely similar to its predecessor (save for a reorganization of sections), the new trailer creation environment is much cleaner. Apple removed the red theater curtains and seats in the background, making better use of the space by offering a bigger preview screen.
To create a movie, tap Projects at the top. A Plus icon appears in this mode to let you start a new movie or trailer. Movies let you combine videos, photos and music while Trailers are template-based projects to help you create a Hollywood-style video.
When you create a new Movie, you first select from one of eight templates, each of which have its own background theme music (you can switch templates mid-project, and elect to turn off the music).
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We made cuts between shots of a co-worker typing and scenes of street traffic, creating a fun, dramatic interplay. We picked a file from our library, dragged edges of the surrounding yellow frame to select the part we wanted and tapped the ellipses button below the frame to insert it as a cutaway. Then we put clips of colleague's confused face and lightning-fast hands side-by-side, followed by placing a shot of his computer screen into the video as a picture-in-picture.
The app also offers greater control over audio, with the ability to view waveforms (only on iPad), detach audio from video and fade in or out. An ample database of sounds is available, with eight Theme Music clips and more than 50 Sound Effects and audio from your iTunes library.
You can also add text by tapping the T-symbol that shows up at the bottom right when you select a clip. iMovie offers nine title options, including Modern, Standard, Gravity, Pop-Up and Expand. Unfortunately, you can't change the font face, size or color of the words.
A form slid out from the left asking for information like Movie Name, Studio Name, Directed By, Edited By and so on. Once we were done, we tapped Storyboard and started to film or lay out shots (Wide, Medium, Closeup or Group as indicated by the template). It took us about 30 minutes to shoot or choose the 24 required clips to fit in the minute-long storyboard.
iMovie Theater is a new feature to all versions of iMovie, letting you sync all your videos to iCloud. You can access your videos on other Apple devices, including Apple TV.