YouTube Announces A Bare-Bones Video Editing Tool

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Holy crap!  YouTube has just today confirmed that they’re planning to release an online video editing tool.  And it’ll be live in the TestTube—YouTube’s playground for new beta features—sometime tonight or tomorrow.  Holy crap!

Just a few short weeks ago I wrote an article speculating on what new features and services YouTube might offer in this, their 6th year of existence.  Not once did it occur to me that they might create their own video editor.  But now that it’s announced… it makes absolute sense… and also I feel stupid for not connecting those dots as well as I should have.  It seems so obvious now.

The tool will be aimed at people that have little first-hand knowledge, training, or experience with video editing—which is another way of saying they’re planning to make it dead-simple to use.  They want users to be able to edit video clips, combine clips together, add music and audio, and then instantly publish their newly edited video.  You’ll also have some noise-reduction tools at your disposal, as well as a library of royalty-free background music.   And it’s all in the cloud—the Video Editor will be cloud-based, meaning there won’t be any complex software downloads for users to endure.

Here’s a screenshot of the editor that Gizmodo Australia grabbed:

There are features that are planned but haven’t yet been added—such as the ability to trim a section of video and then move it to another place along the timeline—right now you can merely trim the unneeded section away from the core video.  But they’re working on it.

Says Josh Siegel, YouTube Product Manager:

“We’re pushing it out as a bare-bones video editor, and as we improve the product in time based on user feedback, we can push out the new features in real time without requiring anyone to down load them.”

So, while it’s launching as a stripped-down, simple editor, don’t be surprised to see it add features and capabilities quickly moving forward.  Oh, and the editor will handle 1080p, which means you can edit full HD videos with this baby.

I cannot tell you how excited I am by this news–though the “holy crap” at this article’s start was probably a clue.  Just two days ago I had a lengthy debate with some coworkers about video editing software.  Despite each of us having our preferences, we all agreed that there weren’t enough simple video editing tools out there, and that it was keeping individuals and businesses out of video that were probably dying to get involved.

And how smart does YouTube look for going this route?  Assuming the editor works well, as I’m sure it will, they’ve just reopened the world of online video to a large group of potential users that might have written it off.  Make it easier for people to edit their videos and they might be more inclined to follow through with actually uploading and sharing them on YouTube.  Brilliant.


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