Action cameras are easy to use, but turning hours of footage into something short and enjoyable is a task daunting enough to cause users to leave their adventures on an SD card, untouched and unshared. GoPro is working to change that with a new feature that CEO Nicholas Woodman says is the company’s biggest move since the GoPro was first invented — software that automatically transfers and edits footage into a ready-to-share file. Thursday, July 27, the company launched GoPro QuikStories, an automatic video-editing option for the Hero5 series, inside the GoPro app for both iOS and Android.
After a firmware update to the Hero5 or Hero5 Session, launching the GoPro app now allows users to automatically transfer files, and then the software gets to work compiling the shots into a shareable video, and sends users a notification when the edit is ready. Users can share as-is, or go in and customize the result by altering the length of the video, adding text, changing the template, or altering the music. Customization options also include slow-motion effects and filters.
The new feature responds to a pain point for consumer video cameras — translating all that footage into something shareable without spending hours using an editing program. The GoPro app can also generate QuikStories using videos shot from a smartphone.
“QuikStories is our biggest leap forward since the invention of the GoPro itself,” says Woodman. “QuikStories is the simple storytelling solution our customers have been dreaming about for years. It’s an absolute game changer.”
The app’s latest feature is likely a result of GoPro’s acquisition of Quik last year, in a deal that also included Splice. Quik as a stand-alone app offers similar quick edits, but the user needed to select and download files separately. With the new integration into the GoPro app, even downloading the files from the GoPro device itself is automated.
The update provides one of the features industry analysts said they hoped to see on the Hero5 back before the camera launched last fall, when the company was struggling with a falling stock price that later led to a restructuring plan. No one wants to watch a shaky 30-minute video, but editing is considered hard, Scott Peterson, an industry analyst for GAP Intelligence said at the time. “A huge thing that will be underlining a lot of new products will be their software experience,” Peterson said. “GoPro has to come up with more user experience wins.”
In a test of a beta version of today’s update, the new feature created a video that was close to complete, with easy edits to get to the final version. Long clips will take more time — and more space on the smartphone, though files can be automatically deleted after a week to prevent data overload.
The GoPro app with the new QuikStories feature is a free download available on both the App Store and Google Play. The feature works with the Hero5 and Hero5 Session, though a firmware update is required.