Editing video on iPad just got a whole lot easier

For more than 20 years, the popular video editing software Final Cut Pro has been a Mac computer exclusive.

Now, for the first time, Final Cut Pro is available on the iPad and it will inspire an entirely new generation of mobile creators.

I’ve been testing out the software to see how it compares to my typical setup of Final Cut Pro on a MacBook Pro.

For starters, the app has an entirely new touch interface and some tablet specific features.

The interface is intuitive and getting the hang of basics is easy. It did take me a bit to discover the split key, so I kept accidentally deleting entire clips by accident. Hopefully, they add split to the pop-up menu when you press and hold on a clip.

There’s a new jog wheel that lets you get precise with your edits, so you can advance through your footage fast or slow, or even frame by frame. It works well for a touch screen.

And once I added the Apple Pencil to the mix, it brings editing to an entirely new level. I felt like Picasso, but with video editing. The iPad makes the perfect canvas for creation.

One neat trick social media creators will love is a feature called Live Drawing. It lets you write on the screen to create animated titles on your videos with ease. The animation appears just as you drew it.

Here’s the Instagram Reel I edited on Final Cut Pro for iPad.

I didn’t have as much luck with a feature called Scene Removal. This is supposed to let you remove a background without a green screen. It only worked OK in my experience. It seems like I will need to play with it more to see how to get the best removal effect.

Final Cut Pro for the iPad also includes effects, transitions, titles, backgrounds and even objects like that all-important thumbs up or a bell to “smash that like button.” If you watch YouTube, you know what I mean.

There is also a selection of built-in music soundtracks that can automatically adapt to the length of your project.

Editing on a touch interface is fast, smooth, and more relaxing and casual than a desktop.

Sadly, I discovered that Final Cut on the iPad doesn’t support the broadcast specific file format that I use daily to edit my segments for TV, so it can’t replace my desktop workflow just yet due.

Still, for many users Final Cut Pro on the iPad bridges a long-standing gap in the editing world. You’ve got your phone for the quick stuff and a desktop for the big stuff.

But for everything in between, you can now accomplish professional level results with one of the most versatile products in computing history.

Final Cut Pro for iPad is $5 dollars a month or $50 dollars for the year. You can try it out for a month for free. You do need an iPad with an M1 chip or later to use it and an M2 chip to take advantage of certain features.

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