When it comes to knowledge of mobile journalism apps that can help make your work pop, smooth out those workflow kinks or take the pressure off a shoot while on the move, there are few in the business who can rival BBC trainer and mobile journalism expert Marc Blank-Settle.
At our digital journalism conference Newsrewired, Blank-Settle rattled through 40 apps in an amazing 40 minutes, unearthing some real diamonds in the rough. Some of these apps let you do tasks that most of the main MoJo apps (LumaFusion, Alight Motion, FiLMiC Pro) can do, but they are handy to have because, unlike those all-purpose apps, they focus on a specific task and do not trap you in a long-winded workflow.
We combined the apps featured at the latest Newsrewired with those Blank-Settle recommended at MojoFest in 2022.
Belt yourselves in for some crazy…
Blackmagic Camera on iOS [free]: Add digital film camera controls and image processing to your phone to achieve the same look as Hollywood feature films.
Efekt on iOS [free, in app purchases]: Jelly, dust, glass. Achieve loads of cool visual effects with this video editor, giving you plenty of creative options for Instagram, TikTok and Snapchat content.
Meisai on iOS [paid-for]: More AR filters here to give your social media content some sparkle.
Replace on iOS [free, in app purchases]: “A greenscreen in your pocket,” says Blank-Settle. Wherever you are shooting, give yourself a range of interesting backdrops.
Video editing and subtitles
Filmic Pro on iOS and Android [paid for]: This shooting and editing suite helps you make the most out of your smartphone. It has just about every function you can think of, including subtitles, sound editing, balancing light and shadow, and much more. If it is good enough for Hollywood directors, it is good enough for us.
Stop Motion Studio on iOS and Android [free, in app purchases]: If you do not know, stop motion animation is a moviemaking technique to make objects appear like they are moving. You might not produce the world’s next Wallace and Gromit, but you can add another string to your video bow.
LumaFusion on iOS, Android and Galaxy [paid for]: A one-stop shop for all your smartphone video production needs, from editing to applying special effects, exporting to different platforms, storing, collaborating and sharing. Although it is a paid-for app, it is a one-off purchase.
Multirecs on iOS [free, in app purchases]: Record with the front and back camera simultaneously. You can do this with FiLMiC Pro’s DoubleTake, but you will find some more unorthodox layouts here.
Horizon on iOS [free, in app purchases]: This one is seriously cool and perfect for clandestine recording, this app allows you to record while pretending to be on the phone. Despite the fact you are holding the phone upright (vertically), it will record through the back of your camera in landscape (horizontal).
Icongraph on iOS [free, in-app purchases]: Create quick and eye-popping charts, graphs and maps for your social media content.
Chartistic on iOS [free]: Completely free and yet more advanced features to create dynamic charts.
Color Splash on iOS [paid for]: Excuse the Americanism. This allows you to add colour to selected parts of black and white images for emphasis.
Whiteout on iOS [free, in-app purchases]: Redact, highlight, erase, underline, strike, pixelate, blend, land blur your photos and screenshots.
Photoleap on iOS and Android [free, in-app purchases]: A powerful picture editing suite. You can transform photos by removing the background, applying stickers, filters, effects, and more. You can also sketch whatever is on your mind and let AI transform it into an image.
Converting and changing formats
Video2Photo on iOS [paid for]: As the name suggests, a handy app that allows you to export a picture from any frame of a video. Bye-bye cropped screenshots.
Export Audio on iOS [free, in app purchases]: Rip the audio out of videos, pretty self-explanatory.
Tinywow on web [free]: Yes, it is not technically a phone app but you can access it from your phone’s browser. You can convert to just about any format here. Bookmark this one.
Diptic on iOS [paid for]: A collage creation app, which also allows you to export your collage into an animated video.
Before and After on iOS [paid for]: Use images to create a ‘Before and After’ dynamic comparison video.
Wizabel on iOS [paid for]: Headliner on mobile devices. Create video waveforms using audio and images.
Teleprompter on iOS and Android [free, in app purchases]: An autocue on your smartphone to help you nail your piece-to-cameras. (Ed. So so useful for sounding eloquent in impromptu short social clips)
IntroMate on iOS [paid-for]: A decent intro is important to capture your audience. This app contains around 50 customisable templates for impressive intros, video titles, announcements or film credits for your clips.
Aiko on iOS [free]: Need to transcribe meetings, interviews or lectures? This OpenAI-powered app does just that, in 100 languages.
Typewriter on iOS [free, in app purchases] and Videotyper on iOS [free, in app purchases]: Both apps do as you might expect, use text to create a video with letters coming onto the screen in a typewriter effect.
Black Highlighter on iOS [free]: Censor text on an image with a black highlighter. Brilliant if you like your scoops hot off the phone and don’t want a lawsuit on your hands.
This on iOS [paid for]: Make arrows to label parts of a diagram or image, imaginatively named.
Shortcuts on iOS [free]: Does this ring a bell? It should. It comes installed on an iPhone and is actually a handy place to make gifs, cut up video and even email yourself. Check it out if you have not already.
Ferrite Recording Studio on iOS [free, in-app purchases]: Dedicated to audio editing, you can now take your podcasts, radio journalism or any other type of professional voice production work – like lectures or voiceovers – to the next level.