When you think of Chromebooks, creative professionals aren’t the first demographic that comes to mind. From the very beginning, Chrome OS acquired a bad reputation for lacking productivity apps. The good news is that Chrome OS has come a long way since its inception. There are numerous ways you can now do light video editing on your Chromebook. Android apps and web apps both work well for a quick edit. If you want to get more serious, you can also leverage Linux apps to get more serious work done.
Let’s take a look at the best video editing solutions on a Chromebook.
Android apps and web apps
For the majority of users, Android apps and web apps are your best bet for video editing on your Chromebook. To be sure, most users want to do a few quick edits on personal videos. Both Android and web apps offer a simple way to do this on Chrome OS. Web apps are perhaps the simplest of all, living entirely in the Chrome browser.
If you want to use the Android apps discussed below, make sure you check out our full guide to using Android apps on Chrome OS first. Most modern Chromebooks can run Android apps, so if you bought your device recently you should be good to go.
WeVideo web app
WeVideo is cloud-based, so you can make videos anywhere, anytime — even on the go. With WeVideo Jumpstart, there’s zero upload wait time, which means you can create at the speed of inspiration. Don’t have a powerful computer? No problem. WeVideo does all the heavy lifting in the cloud for you no matter what device you’re using.
Not only is WeVideo great for video editing on your Chromebook, it works seamlessly across Macs, PCs, and iOS and Android mobile devices. Whether you prefer to make videos on your computer, tablet or mobile phone, WeVideo makes it a breeze. The plans are also incredibly affordable, with education and business discounts available.
Adobe Premiere Rush Android app
With Premiere Rush, powerful tools let you quickly create videos that look and sound professional, just how you want. Share to your favorite social sites right from the app and work across devices. Use it for free as long as you want with unlimited exports — or upgrade to access all premium features and hundreds of soundtracks, sound effects, loops, animated titles, overlays, and graphics.
You can arrange video, audio, graphics, and photos with drag and drop. Trim and crop videos, flip and mirror video clips, and add images, stickers and overlays to video clips. Adjust video speed with speed controls and enhance color with intuitive presets and customization tools. If you’re already in the Adobe ecosystem, this is a great solution on Chrome OS.
It’s worth mentioning that some Chromebooks will not be compatible with Adobe Rush. This seems to be a compatibility issue that Adobe is working on with Google at the moment.
PowerDirector Android app
Whether you’re creating cinematic-style movies, videos of your latest adventure or combining clips to share exciting, memorable moments, PowerDirector is the perfect app for video editing on a Chromebook. Some of the pro features include:
- Trim, splice and rotate videos with simple taps.
- Control brightness, color and saturation with precision.
- Apply jaw-dropping effects and transitions with drag & drop.
- Combine pictures and video in one clip using the multi-timeline.
- Add text or animated titles to your video in seconds.
- Add voiceovers recorded on your mobile device a built-in editor.
The paid subscription is a bit expensive, but for the number of features you get, it’s worth it. If you want to do a lot of video editing for different social platforms, this is an excellent choice.
KineMaster makes video editing fun on your phone, tablet, or Chromebook. The software makes it easy to edit videos with lots of powerful tools, downloadable content, and much more. Some key features include:
- Download and re-edit projects from the Get Projects menu (NEW!)
- Import and export project files (NEW!)
- Tools to cut, splice, and crop your videos.
- Combine and edit videos, images, stickers, special effects, text, and more.
- Add music, voiceovers, sound effects, and voice changers.
KineMaster is completely free to use, but you can unlock even more with a KineMaster Premium subscription. A subscription removes the KineMaster watermark and offers an ad-free experience. Learn more by tapping the crown button on the main screen in the app.
YouTube Studio video editor
YouTube Studio is the official Google app for managing your YouTube channel. The primary purpose of this app is to engage with your audience, check video stats, and manage other channel features. However, you can also do some basic editing in the YouTube Studio web platform.
It’s certainly nothing fancy, but you can trim videos, splice clips, and do basic audio editing within YouTube Studio. If you’re a small up-and-coming YouTuber and want to get started with editing videos in a basic way, this is a good option to start out.
Magisto’s smart online video editor is the fastest way to turn your everyday videos and photos into inspired video stories and the easiest way to share them everywhere. It’s not actually magic, its Magisto. This is a great option if you know nothing about video editing, but need to create professional videos for work or business.
When you upload videos and pictures to Magisto, their artificial intelligence engines get to work analyzing the footage. Their algorithms take a virtual look at all of the video and photographs you uploaded for your video and breaks down analysis on three levels – visual analysis, audio analysis and storytelling.
Magisto has both a web app and Android app, so it a two-for-one deal. Both the web app and Android app work equally well on Chrome OS, choose the one you prefer.
If you need a more powerful video editor, Linux apps are the way to go. There are only two Linux apps I would recommend for video editing on Chrome OS at the moment. Kdenlive is the more full-featured app, but it runs a bit slower in the Chrome OS Linux container. On the other hand, Shotcut lacks a few key features but runs very smoothly on my Chromebook.
Installing Linux apps requires a bit of command-line knowledge. If you aren’t familiar with using Terminal commands for Linux, see my complete guide to Linux apps on Chrome OS for an introduction first.
- Download using:
sudo apt-get install kdenlive -y
Video editing is a big deal these days. Millions of people upload videos to YouTube, Twitch, and Tiktok every hour. If you’re serious about video editing, moving to Chrome OS can be a bit scary. Thankfully, Kdenlive is a nice video editing program for Linux that can run on your Chromebook.
Those of you who are used to running Final Cut Pro or Adobe Premiere Pro will pick up the intuitive interface in no time. It’s worth noting that while Kdenlive does run well on Chrome OS, you’ll need a fairly powerful Chromebook to take full advantage of this app.
Shotcut runs incredibly smooth on Chrome OS and packs a lot of features. The software has multiple dockable and undockable panels, including detailed media properties, recent files with search, playlist with thumbnail view, filter panel, history view, encoding panel, jobs queue, and melted server and playlist. It also supports drag-n-drop of assets from file manager.
Installation for Shotcut is a bit trickier than Kdenlive. The easiest method is to use the Linux App Image. Next, open the Terminal and run the command:
chmod +x ./shotcut-linux-x86_64-210321.AppImage
Followed by the command:
Here, you need to replace ‘shotcut-linux-x86_64-210321.AppImage’ with the current file name for the latest version you’ve downloaded. This process basically makes the AppImage executable and then runs the executable file. Overall, Shotcut is my favorite app for more intense video editing on Chrome OS.
Those are our picks for the best video editors available on Chromebooks today. If you need basic editing capability, check out one of the popular Android or web apps. For those that need robust editing for professional videos, use Kdenlive or Shotcut via Linux on your Chromebook.