Member blog post: Using video apps

By Nicole Raz, JAWS fellowships co-chair

The trick to becoming comfortable with any new app or tech is just to experiment and practice with it – here are a few tips.


  • The iPhone app “Clips” just came out recently and it is currently free to download and use. It is a very useful app to put together quick, sharable videos.
  • The iPhone app “Voddio” is a great app for getting started with audio. You can produce slightly more complicated videos with Voddio than Clips. Voddio is free to download, but there is a one time $10 fee in order to do useful things with your files, like email, or text message them to yourself or upload them to SoundCloud.
  • If you’re just getting started, here is some easy plug-and-play equipment to use for a more professional sound: Use regular iPhone earbuds with a built-in microphone, or you can hook up an XLR microphone, like this one, to your smartphone or iPad using an adapter like this one.
  • When shooting a video interview with just one subject using the regular phone camera app, always hold the phone horizontally with one hand. Meanwhile, with the other hand, make a fist and hold it up about a hand’s length away from your head at eye level. Ask your subject to please look at your fist instead of you when s/he speaks. When you get more comfortable, you can also just start holding your recording device in the place of your fist. You do this in order to have the subject’s line of sight appear to be looking across the screen. Make sure to get at least three angles during your interview in order to have an easier time editing later. To do this, change your position between questions. It is also always helpful to shoot some b-roll.

Here are some transcription resources:

  • A cheap and time-saving way to transcribe audio is: It’s just $20 a year, and you can slow down, speed up, fast forward or rewind your audio while you transcribe it in the same window.
  • A more costly but even more time-saving way to transcribe audio is: It’s $40/month gets you 3 hours worth of audio that is transcribed digitally within 10 minutes. You can playback, review and edit the transcription.