2017 04: April

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(iOS) Clips:

Apple’s newest video app Clips, (https://www.apple.com/clips/), released in early April, makes it easy for professionals to create mobile videos with transcribed text and effects. Clips was created with social media in mind, and it could help social media experts and marketers more readily generate video content for their brands.

Videos can be captured within the Clips app, or users can import existing video clips or photos from their device’s library,” Forrest writes. “Using the pinch and drag functionality that iOS is known for, users can add a zoom or panning effect for a little bit of flair.

Live Titles, which automatically transcribes text on the screen while you speak, is the core feature for professionals in Clips. Using Live Titles, businesses could easily create product demonstrations, or how-to videos, as well as creating video that can be watched in an office setting with the sound off. Clips has streamlined the Share Sheet, making it much easier to share content with frequent contacts - something that Apple could consider as a more general enhancement for everyone.

As is the case with most video-oriented apps, you do a lot of fancy stuff in Clips, you just have to know where to look....

Embrace the square

Recording video within the Clips app results in square videos, there's no way around it. You can, however, record videos or take pictures outside of the app and import them into the app later.

The lay of the land

There are six buttons along the top of the display, each representing different tools you have at your disposal when creating or editing a video. The down arrow in the top-left corner of the screen will reveal clips you are working on or recently saved.

Centred at the top of the screen are four buttons.Each button enables editing tools. These buttons, from left to right, are for live titles, filters, stickers and emoji, and animated posters.

In the far-right corner is a music note, where you will find preloaded music soundtracks or your music library to use in your videos.

Below the square viewfinder are three options: Photo, Video, and Library. To the left of the shutter button is a microphone you can tap on to mute recorded audio, with a camera button to the right that switches between the front or back camera.

Transcribed captions

Live Title is a fancy term for captions, only instead of hand-typing text, you use your voice.

Tap on the Live Titles button and select one of the templates. Don't stress too much about this part, you can always go back and change the template after you are done recording.

Next, tap and hold the big red button and speak as you capture video or show a photo. Your words are then transcribed in real time. As is often the case, if the app doesn't quite hear you right and jumbles the transcription, begin to playback the clip then pause it as soon as the text is present. Double-tap the text to open the editor, where you can then type in what you want to say.

If you don't want your voice to play along with the text, tap on the microphone button to mute audio before you begin recording. Clips will still transcribe whatever you say while recording, but your voice won't be included in the playback.

You will need an active internet connection in order for this feature to work.

Animated posters

Double-tap on the text in any of the animated posters after adding it to your clip to display the keyboard and edit the text.

There are currently 12 different posters you can add to a clip.

Add a soundtrack

When you open the soundtrack section of the app, a list of Apple-curated songs is displayed. Most of them will need to be downloaded before you can add it to your video. After selecting a song, you are given the option to trim it down to match up as best as possible with your video.

Set duration of still photo

Taking a photo in the Clips app is a two step process. First, you tap on the shutter button to take the photo, then a big red button titled "Hold to add this photo" is shown just below your photo. Holding the button will extend the amount of time the photo is shown in your video, as well as record audio to play at the same time the photo is displayed.

Pinch to zoom

On both videos and photos, you can pinch to zoom in or out on a portion of your video. For photos and videos captured outside of Clips, you can also reposition the item by dragging your finger across the screen. For example, if you're making a video of a recent vacation but don't want to include the random stranger who photobombed you, you can zoom in to cut the inconsiderate person out of the clip.

Filters, stickers, and emoji

There are currently seven different filters, along with a series of stickers and emoji you can place on a photo or video.

You can adjust the size and position of stickers and emoji with familiar gestures such as pinch to zoom. Tap on a sticker or emoji, then tap on the "X" if you want to remove it from your clip.

Rearrange and delete items

As you add, record and edit the contents of your video creation you may find that you need to rearrange or delete a specific shot.

Tap and hold on the respective clip's thumbnail along the bottom of the screen, and drag it to your preferred location, or drag it up and let go to delete it.


When you have finished creating a clip, share it with a tap on the standard iOS share button. However, what Clips displays on the share sheet is new to iOS. Specifically, Clips will attempt to identify any faces in your video and suggest sharing to that person (or persons).

At the top of the share sheet you will find a row of avatars for your most recent contacts, complete with a Messages icon to quickly open the Messages app with a message composed to that specific contact.

Rating Clips

The Good: Deep editing controls and effects. Impressive voice-transcribing autocaptioning works really well. Uploads to apps like Instagram, YouTube and Facebook. Included soundtracks are fun. It's free.

The Bad: Only makes square videos. Menu layouts can be a little confusing to learn at first. Audio editing is limited. Captions and audio can only be recorded when clip is added.

The Bottom Line: Apple Clips is a promising movie editor for fast Facebook and Instagram-ready videos, and its captioning tools are fantastic.

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© 2017 Canterbury Apple Users; SeniorNet Mac Inc.