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Review: Adobe Premiere Clip for Android

In late 2014, Adobe unveiled a mobile editing app called Premiere Clip for iOS--a well-designed and useful app, if not a full-fledged pro editing solution like Premiere Pro. Here we look at the recently introduced Android version to see if it measures up to the iOS app and what, if any, new functionality it introduces.

Previously, I evaluated Adobe’s Premiere Clip app for iOS on an iPad Air. Exactly one year later, Adobe has filled the yawning gap and released an Android build for their mobile video editing application. As with iOS, the Android version is completely free with no in-app purchases.

In November 2015, I started evaluating Premiere Clip for Android to determine if it was as useful to pros as the iOS version. Although the apps are supposed to be identical, there are some key differences that make it clear that this new version is not an exact replica.

Differences between the iOS and Android versions of Premiere Clip are minimal. The color scheme and UI are as similar as can be expected between the two different mobile operating systems. And since projects can be stored in the cloud, the ability to edit the same project on multiple devices is possible...sort of. More on that later.

The Test Project

For my test project, my Dad and I recorded each other trying to out-torture our tongues with some wicked hot sauce and salsa combinations. You can watch the edited video below.

 

Each of us recorded on our respective Android smartphones. Then we used Android Beam to get his files onto my device. Once everything was in one place, I made a new project in Premiere Clip and imported all the video files we had recorded.

Editing

There are two options for editing: Automatic and Freeform. Automatic lets the app’s algorithms take over the entire creative process by automatically cutting, splicing, adding music, fades, and effects. When I compared the automatic to my final Freeform, there was no comparison. The Automatic edit butchered most of the clips, and I can see it being somewhat useful only when precision editing isn’t required and most of the clips are abstract.

Freeform, by default, sorts the clips by order of selection. I’d like to see a way to sort them by timestamp to make it easier to combine multiple sources without having to manually figure out the order of clips. Editing on a 4.7” screen proved trying at first. But after a few minutes of practice, I got quite efficient at setting my in and out points and duplicating a clip to re-use other portions elsewhere. I started with 10 clips and ended up cutting them up into 16 different pieces.

Color looks are non-destructive when completing your edit in Premiere Pro, but any video exported with exposure/highlight/shadows effects applied will be permanently altered. Any color grading or effects that are needed should be reserved for final polish in Premiere Pro if you can get there. I did utilize some of the audio effects, such as fade in/out, and by turning off audio for some b-roll clips that didn’t have speech. The music selection is pretty limited in number and variety, but I managed to find a track that worked for me. The auto-ducking works really well and was perfect for when we were talking about the sauces.

Related Articles
With Adobe Premiere Clip, you can shoot your video with your iPhone or iPad, perform edits on that iDevice using Premiere Clip, then transfer the video and the project to the Creative Cloud and bring it into Adobe Premiere Pro on your workstation for finalization. Here's how.
Premiere Clip, Adobe's new iOS editing app, is a simple cut/trim editor, not a full-blown editing app. How useful is it for pro editors who need to do mobile editing on-the-go?