When smartphones appeared on the market for the first time - if you are old enough to remember) did you expect they'd go this far? The development of these small devices has reached unimaginable levels. Today, we can not only speak and write messages with our phones, but go shopping, navigate streets in a foreign country, translate into every language, code, record, and even edit pictures and videos.

Video editing on smartphones or larger mobile devices (like tablets that share the same operating system as smartphones but have a larger screen) is becoming particularly popular. To app developers, video editing apps are a great opportunity for profit and success. After all, the first thing to ask yourself when developing a new app is what customers want. Since today's smartphone users want video editing apps, in this article, we'll find out how to develop video editing apps for free or at least for a very small budget.

Why is video editing on smartphones becoming so popular?

Understanding the trends of the market is the first of any business process, and since you want to earn money from your app development job, you need to think in terms of business! The market you need to analyze is, of course, smartphones and mobile apps. 

Smartphones market

To understand how the market of smartphones has grown and is growing, we don't need to look at the data: looking around is more than enough. Everyone owns a smartphone; the majority of people hold their smartphone in their hands for more than two hours every day; many people use their smartphone to do all the most common daily things - from grocery lists to flight ticket purchasing -, and the physical and online marketplaces are stocked with them.

If we still want to take a look at data, we can take a look at some forecasting. Despite everyone seeming to already have a smartphone, the number of smartphones on planet Earth is expected to grow even further in 2023 (from 2,476 million to 2,720 million!).

Mobile apps

What kind of apps is being used most by the users? Many categories of apps can be included in this list: shopping apps, to-do lists apps, chat apps, and more, but what about video editing apps? The use of video editing apps is growing and growing, and there are two main reasons for it:

  • Smartphones are becoming more and more advanced. Displays are more and more defined, and smartphone performances (because of the development of both hardware and software) are becoming more and more powerful. Video editing wasn't something small devices like smartphones could handle efficiently up to some years ago. Still, with the new powerful processors that are being implemented, something as complex as video editing is becoming possible on smartphones too.
  • The second but main reason why people are using their smartphones to edit their videos more and more often is because smartphones have become the main recording device for a vast majority of users (only professionals still use professional cameras, and sometimes even they opt for a good quality smartphone for improved efficiency). With video editing apps, users no longer need to move their videos from their smartphone to their computer to edit them with a software tool. They can finally handle anything from their smartphone.

Video editing market; some data

We've just made some qualitative observations, but what is the data saying? The market analysis says that the mobile video app market was worth $25 billion in 2021! It means that the market is huge, but it also means that the competition is becoming higher and higher. App developers who want to enter this market need to do it soon!

Developing a video editing app: things to know before you start

Planning is always essential before you start a project, but with app development, it becomes even more important. Since this article provides information on how to develop your video editing app, we'll focus on planning in the first part. Editing app development planning, in particular, can be organized into three main chunks: general planning, development planning, and monetization and marketing planning. 

General planning

When you plan to develop a video editing mobile app, you are in a certain way thinking of launching a new business. So, the preliminary steps would be to get to know your target audience and what they need. Besides that, you also want to make sure you have clear ideas about what your video editing app will look like.

Analyze your target audience
Who is going to use your mobile video editing app? More than a matter of age and gender, you need to focus on users' skill levels. You need to decide, in other terms, if you want to provide users with an easy and user-friendly app that anyone can use (but that, maybe, has limited advanced features) or a professional app with advanced features and anything a pro would need to create their videos directly from their mobile device. It's easy to understand that if you don't make this decision before you start developing your video editing app, you won't be able to move in a clear direction with your work.

Clarify your ideas
Getting to know your target audience helps you clarify the ideas about the kind of video editing app you want to build. However, there are other things to consider. The main aspect you need to consider is the achievability of your idea: do you have the skill and budget to realize what you have in mind?

Budget
Last but not least, you need to establish the resources you have at your disposal, and it's not only a matter of money. How many developers can work on the project? How much time can you dedicate to the process? It would help if you drew a plan that is achievable and detailed so that nothing is left to chance.

Development planning

Now it's time to think of what your video editing app will look like. Thinking of what an app would look like, it's thinking about what features it is going to include. This would probably be one of the most critical aspects of your planning and development: we've dedicated a separate paragraph to it (see Video Editing App Development: Features down below).

Monetization and marketing planning

We've underlined a couple of times that when you develop an app, you need to think from a business perspective (if you want to make some profit out of your editing app development work) which means that you need to consider the choice of your monetization model and marketing strategies. Developing the app and then thinking about how to earn some money out of it would be a mistake. Knowing how to monetize your video editing app (so picking a monetization model) is as important as knowing what features you want to include in it. 

  • The main monetization models you can pick from are:
  • Freemium monetization model: you can provide the app for free but earn profit through ads displayed in it.
  • Paymium monetization model: you can require payment for downloading your app

Subscription monetization model: if you don't want to pick the freemium model, the subscription model is more often utilized than the Paymium: it would require users to pay a fee every month. The users more easily accept this because it is a model that many apps use.  The same goes for marketing: you know your audience; now it's time to think about how you can reach them. When it comes to apps, you need to focus on digital marketing: use social media, videos on YouTube, and an independent website to let your targeted audience know about your app.

Video Editing App Development: Features

What kind of features could a video editing app include? 

Libraries
Libraries are where users take their videos and pictures when they edit them. Since we're speaking of mobile video editing, libraries are essentially the smartphone's pictures and videos gallery.  You can find a way of letting your users import videos and pictures from their galleries or - better - provide the app with an integration that allows users to take their videos directly from the smartphone's libraries.

Video editing
The main aspect of your video editing development process is the video editing main tool. It is comprised of:

  • A time frame
  • A preview panel
  • Basic editing tools like a cut, drag, and drop, play and pause, and similar.

Sound editing
In video editing apps, sound can be handled in two ways:

  • With a dedicated audio track (this is the more advanced option)
  • Within the videos themselves. This is easier to develop and more suitable for an app dedicated to beginners and amateurs (this is one example of how knowing your targeted audience is important!)

Adding sound effects
A video editing app could allow users to add sound effects. The easiest way to provide this feature would be to include a library of sound effects within the app. Again, if you are targeting more advanced users, you could provide the possibility of importing their sound effects.

Cut and merge different video files.
Editing videos often means using different videos as sources. A slightly more advanced feature would be the one that allows users to import more than one video file and cut and merge them as they wish.

Stickers 
Other than a library of sound effects, you could also provide a library of stickers. This would be a feature that beginners and amateurs would appreciate (again, knowing your targeted audience is very important).

Filters
Filters are even more advanced: they are pre-setup image adjustments that could turn, for example, a colored video in black and white. 

Social media integration
Integrating a social media feature means allowing users to share the videos they create with your app directly on social media, without too many passages. When you think of what features you want to include, you must reflect on something: why are many users editing their videos on their smartphones? What kind of use are they going to make of their videos? Well, on most occasions, they are going to share their edited videos on social media. Between two good video editing apps, they will use, prefer, and spend their money on the one that allows them to share videos on social media with an easy-to-use integration directly.

Orientation of images and videos
An easy feature to integrate would be the one that allows users to change the orientation of images and videos.

Artificial intelligence
The use of artificial intelligence is one of the most advanced features you can provide on a video editing app. Despite being very advanced, it would be something that especially beginners would appreciate. Artificial intelligence could be used to provide automation during the video editing process. For example, given a series of pictures, a video editing app provided with artificial intelligence features could create videos automatically. In a similar way, artificial intelligence could be used to suggest, for example, transitions between frames.

Your video editing app doesn't need to include all these features. As we've seen in the course of this paragraph, some features are more suitable for professional or advanced editing; others are suitable for beginners. Based on your targeted audience, you can choose the features you want to include in your app carefully: the choice is useful to narrow down your ideas, plan your budget, and plan your workflow.

How to create a video editing app?

Let's not hide it: developing a video editing app is a complex process. We've described how the planning part can be long and articulated, and that would be just the beginning. After that, there is the actual development and coding app. So, how can you handle it? Instead of starting from scratch, the most efficient way of handling it is by using the right development tools. In particular, there are mobile app development tools that ease and simplify the way you can code and develop your app. 

AppMaster.io is one of these video editing developing tools, and it's one of the most recommended. It allows you to create mobile apps, including your amazing video editing app, without actually coding (but you can get access to the source code if you want or need it). So how does it work?

How to create your video editing app with AppMaster.io developing tool

AppMaster.io is a very versatile development software tool. First, it provides you with a user-friendly and clear dashboard through which you can take all the different aspects under control from one place. The main advantage of using this tool is that it provides you with prebuilt components that you can use as you wish. This can take you tons of time because a big part of your job is already done.

Furthermore, all the other important aspects we've mentioned that aren't strictly connected to coding - such as planning or monetizing - are made easier through dedicated features. With tools like this, collaborating with your colleagues also becomes easier. Last but not least, mobile app development tools are also ideal for optimizing your budget. As we're about to discover, the development process of an app can be very expensive!

How much does it cost to create a video editing app?

It's not easy to answer this question: the cost of your amazing video editing app depends on just too many factors.

Your skills: did you just have a business idea, or are you also capable of developing a video editing app yourself? You can understand how the cost of the video editing app can be different in these two cases: In the first case, you need to hire a developer or more, and the costs would be much higher.
The complexity of your app: a simpler app is quicker to develop, and it will be less expensive
The time at your disposal: sometimes, getting things done quickly can be more expensive.
It's important to underline in this regard that using a software tool like AppMaster.io that we've mentioned can help optimize the budget. Why?

  1. Because the video editing development process will be quicker and, therefore, less expensive.
  2. Because you'll need fewer developers working on the project
  3. Because you can handle different aspects in one place, including business and monetization-related aspects.

Can you create a video editing app for free?

Ideally, you can: if you have the necessary skills, developing video editing features by yourself without using any app development tool is possible, and you can try developing a video editing app for free. 

Conclusion

With this article, we've given any information you need to develop your video editing app most efficiently. All the different aspects you'll need to handle are listed here. With this knowledge and a good mobile app development software (like AppMaster.io, which is the one we've recommended), you can reach your goals and develop your amazing video editing app with efficiency!