What makes it potentially hard to get off the ground with a cloud-based video editor is that all of your raw footage must find its way into the editor. A decent five-minute video could require hours of raw footage to create. Since most users have connections with slower upload than download speeds, you could be uploading footage for hours on end before you can even begin editing. Fortunately, WeVideo’s seamless connection with Dropbox and others cloud-based file storage services makes this less of an issue.
When I use my Galaxy S III to shoot footage, it is automatically uploaded to Dropbox. The upload takes time, but I don’t need to think about it or do anything to make it happen. Once the files are in Dropbox, I only need to point WeVideo at them, and it pulls them into the editor very quickly. Feeding WeVideo with a gigabyte of footage took less than ten minutes, once it was all on Dropbox.
Once your footage is in the editor, the editing experience is simple and pleasant. WeVideo offers a timeline you can drag clips onto. It is easy to trim clips as needed and add transitions, and there’s a rich library of soundtracks you can use. Fading audio in and out takes just a couple of clicks, and the whole system felt responsive and would be familiar to anyone with experience with desktop video applications.
One advantage of WeVideo’s cloud-based nature is collaboration: You can invite friends to upload footage to your project, and even create different edits based on the same footage. This collaborative workflow is one of the service’s main selling points.
Once you’re done editing, it’s time to export your work. Free accounts can only export very low resolution (480p) watermarked video. I understand the limitation, but I wish WeVideo was more upfront about it and made it clear as part of the registration process, rather than reveal it at the last possible moment when the editing work has been done. It is easy to connect WeVideo to YouTube and other Web video services, so you don’t have to download a file and upload it to YouTube yourself–WeVideo does the whole thing on its own.
If you need to collaborate on a video project with a distributed team, WeVideo offers important benefits and can let you share footage and edits in ways that aren’t possible otherwise. It can also come in handy for the occasional solo project, as long as you don’t mind uploading your footage to the cloud prior to editing.
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Endlessly tweaking his workflow for comfort and efficiency, Erez is a freelance writer on a mission to discover the simplest, coolest, and most effective software and websites to make tomorrow happen today.