Facebook’s video editor is embarrassingly old, and Apple is creeping

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You know we screwed adult if Apple is about to one-up we on social. 

Facebook hasn’t upgraded a video editor in good over 3 years. Lagging far behind Snapchat, YouTube and even Instagram, it’s a widen to even call a featureless artifact a video editor.

All we can do with an uploaded video is trim a ends and toggle a sound on or off. That’s a vivid disaster deliberation Mark Zuckerberg wants “video during a heart of all a apps and services.”

And now, Apple is plotting to seize a event Facebook has left vacant. Bloomberg reports Apple is building a lightweight mobile video editor designed for one-minute, one-handed use.

That’s accurately what Facebook should have built years ago.

Facebook's old-fashioned video uploader has roughly no features

Facebook’s old-fashioned video uploader has roughly no features

Facebook cut pro? No.

Since late 2013, Facebook has poured resources into improving video consumption while neglecting how users record and share. It launched auto-play video in a feed, call an blast in viewership. Better analytics taught creators what works. Those advances took it from frequency any video views to 1 billion per day in Sep 2014, to 8 billion in Nov 2015, to expected many some-more today.

It’s not like Facebook couldn’t build an editor. It grown a video pity app Poke in 12 days, launched Slingshot, that offering plain video modifying and has watched a merger Instagram build a complicated video editor. Meanwhile, Facebook Live has turn a association darling. After rising final August, it’s already combined filters and is operative on a sketch tool.

Perhaps a closest thing Facebook has to a video editor is a Moments photo-sharing app’s involuntary slideshow film maker. It stitches your photos and videos together with themed transitions and song to emanate a some-more engaging mini-film. It’s ostensible to be rolling out to a categorical app, though we don’t see it and it still lacks many simple modifying tools.

So here we are, 3 years after we wrote that “right now Facebook’s video origination apparatus is painfully outdated,” and zero has changed. That’s ashamed for a association that claims to “move fast.”

What should Facebook’s video uploader be means to do? At a really least, it should let you:

  • Combine mixed clips into one video
  • Add tone filters

That would during slightest pierce it adult to 2014 standards. To be deliberate endurable in a complicated age, it should also let you:

  • Stabilize unsure video
  • Add overlaid text, drawings, emoji and stickers
  • Manually mix videos and photos into Stories

For comparison, Snapchat's video editor includes all sorts of countenance tools

For comparison, Snapchat’s video editor includes all sorts of countenance tools

And if Facebook wanted to indeed get a shit together, it’d emanate a best-in-class video recorder and uploader with some of these facilities that let you:

  • Add geofilters representing circuitously neighborhoods, events, landmarks or businesses (Snapchat)
  • Create split-screen collages with mixed videos and/or photos shown during once (Editing apps)
  • Add video effects like slow-mo, fast-forward or retreat (Snapchat)
  • Select a soundtrack (Vine, YouTube)
  • Reorder clips (Editing apps)
  • Choose transitions between clips (iMovie)
  • Record video while your device is personification audio (Snapchat)
  • Zoom by scrolling one finger adult and down instead of swelling and pinching with dual fingers
  • Do lipsyncing (Musical.ly, Dubsmash)
  • Sync-to-beat for formulating audio loops (Vine)
  • Ghost outlines of your prior shave to line adult shots (Vine)

Plus, I’m certain Facebook’s group could come adult with some cold other features. These wouldn’t have to overcomplicate a video uploader. They could be tucked in an modifying options drawer so people who only wish to supplement a clip, filter a color, slap some calm on and post it could do that though removing confused.

Unlocking self-expression

Facebook needs a approach to retreat a trend of disappearing strange calm sharing, that The Information reports was down 15 percent year over year as of February. Yet it’s not giving people a collection they need to emanate unique, constrained content. Instead, large publishers with their veteran modifying teams are stuffing a feed with social-optimized video that looks flattering though feels general and impersonal.

At slightest Facebook’s app has started to confederate a merger of charcterised selfie builder MSQRD into a new camerafeed design. But that focuses on enhancing clips shot in a app, not modifying existent clips.


If Facebook doesn’t make a move, Apple and others will, and those videos won’t indispensably finish adult on Facebook. Building a good editor gives Facebook precedence to select either those videos should only live on a amicable network, be downloadable or even be simply common to other apps.

I’ve been blogging about Facebook for 6 years. For a final half of that, I’ve personally hoped that each time a association wanted to brief me, it’d uncover off some sharp new video modifying interface. But I’ve been unhappy time and time again, and saddened by a missed possibility to commission 1.71 billion people to turn creators.

So seriously, Facebook…