If you want to create professional videos and live streams for YouTube and Facebook on your iPhone this is an essential app for your mobile brand journalism kit which will speed up you workflow.
I have been waiting months for this free iOS app to be launched and was hoping to be able to test it in beta – but low and behold it appeared in the app store in the last 24 hours – and I could not wait to test it. What is the app? It is from the Switcher Studio stable and is called SwitcherGo.
In this article I share some of the key features which I hope will encourage you to check it out. Note: I focus more on the recording of video using the app and Facebook Live in this article rather than YouTube live streaming.
Getting Started With SwitcherGo To Record Video Or Live Stream
When you download the app you will see there is the option to record content – so you can create a video on your phone with assets that you use during the recoring from your camera roll. However if you want to live stream to Facebook Live or YouTube you will need to register for a free account with Switcher.
You will see your camera for your iPhone is immediately connected – you can zoom the camera and change it from front to rear facing as well as having access to controls such as changing the depth of field, the exposure and white balance.
You can also remotely contol another iPhone or iPad (I have not had the chance to test this yet) though you need to be on the same wifi connection.
You can add up to four media assets – overlays, images and video content – that you can use during the recording or your video or your live stream.
This is a great way that you could add a watermark to your content using a transparent png file as an overlay – you can position and resize the overlay on the screen.
If you want to use media that is for example portrait or square, you can choose the colour of the frame around it.
Alternatively you can format the media so that the edge spreads and you do not have to add a border or you can resize the image to fill the frame.
You can add video content as a media asset – so you could for example use a video to start or end the live stream or play a video during the live stream. Of course you need to ensure that you have the rights to feature the video or images in your recording or live stream.
I really like the fact that you can move and change the media assets in the app before you start to live stream or record video so you can then place them in the order relevant to your production.
You can live stream to Facebook Live by connecting the app to your Facebook account. To stream to YouTube you will need to connect your Google account.
You can decide what access you give the app for live streaming on Facebook.
You can choose to stream to Facebook Live on your profile, page, to an event or a group. If you stream to your Facebook Profile you will be able to decide the level of privacy of the stream – a great way to get started and test the app is to do a private stream to just yourself.
Before you go live on Facebook Live take a moment to check the setting for the quality of the live stream you want to create – personally I tested using the HD setting and the high setting.
Once you are live streaming on Facebook you will see the red ‘live’ button on the top left of the screen.
When you have finished your live stream you need to wait before closing the SwitcherGo app as the media needs to transder to the server.What you will find after the live stream or recording has ended is that you can go to your recorded media in the app and there you can review, delete or save the video to your camera roll. This means that you get an independent recording of your live stream so do not have to reply on downloading it from YouTube or Facebook. If you want to use the video that you record in the app, such as when creating b-roll content using the app, you will need to download it to your camera roll.
If you want to see an example of a video that I created using SwitcherGo you can view it here on YouTube.
Additional Notes On SwitcherGo For Video Production And Live Streaming
The app does have a very helpful set of FAQ’s to help you get started. There is reference to a ‘Powered by Switcher’ watermark – this will be implemented in a future update as an opt-in feature if users would like to have Switcher feature their content – in the meantime you do not need to worry about their being a SwitcherGo watermark on your video or live stream which is terrific especially as this is s FREE app.
I understand there will be additional features in a pro edition of SwitcherGo in the future.
For example, I understand that there will be the ability to bring comments for example from Facebook Live onto the screen – I am not sure if this will be a paid feature.
Within the app there are some start and end screens you can use in your live stream – personally I would like to be able to add my own custom graphics or video and them not have to be one of the four media assets you can use in SwitcherGo.
I would also like to have the ability to loop the video.
When recording a video, I used my phone earbuds so that I could hear my audio and also improve the quality of the audio minimising background noise – audio monitoring does introduce a small delay which is needed to allow syncing when using remote camera function I understand from the developer.
In summary, SwitcherGo is a a terrific free app for your iPhone if you want to create video content with media assets or live stream to Facebook or YouTube from your phone. I can not wait to see what features will be available in the pro account.
How To Learn More About The SwitcherGo App – Join Me In A Facebook Live With The Developer
I was left with some questions after testing the app and was able to have many of them answered thanks to the pro-active customer support on Facebook from the SwitcherGo team. But I still had others that were unanswered such as:
- Will there be an Android version of SwitcherGo?
- What devices will we be able to connect as a remote camera and how will that work?
- Will there be the option for multi person split screen interviews – side by side – using the SwitcherGo multi camera feature?
- Will people be able to use the remote camera feature if they are not on the same wifi in the future i.e. in different locations?
- Will we be able to go live to other platforms such as Periscope Producer from Switcher Go?
Fortunately I was able to secure a live stream interview on Facebook Live with Nick Mattingly of SwitcherGo which took place on Friday 11 December – you can watch it on Facebook or you can see the replay below.
In the meantime, I encourage you to download the app and get stared testing SwitcherGo – it has the potential to fundamentally change your workflow for video production on your phone and mobile live streaming. It’s the best free Christmas gift you will probably receive this year and probably will be much better than many paid ones if you are passionate about creating compelling and quality video content from your phone in 2017!
And if you need assistance in helping you define how you want to use live video in your communications in the year ahead you can schedule a free discovery session with me.