Touchcast: A Multimedia Studio For Your iPad

For multimedia journalists, finding a way to incorporate video, text and audience interactivity is often a challenge. Now a new app makes authoring multimedia and broadcast stories simple enough to do right on your iPad.

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In a Touchcast timeline, the colored dots represent rich media that will appear for the audience to interact with while the video continues to play. You can also add your own lower third titles.

Touchcast (iOS, free) lets you create and share videos alongside interactive “vApps” that pop up in your video at predetermined points in your story. Audiences can tap on those apps to interact with them, while your video continues to play. vApps include websites, Google maps, Flickr galleries, polls and more.

Imagine inserting a Google Map when your reporter talks about the location of an event, or showing a Flickr gallery of old images in the part of your story that addresses the history of your topic.

Think of this app as an interactive broadcast story, or a website that has come to life with video playing in the background.

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The video recording interface. In this instance, video is being imported from the camera roll. You can add voice over to pre-existing video, and also draw on the image using the “whiteboard” feature–convenient for sports play-by-plays, or when you need to emphasize one part of the screen.

Journalists can record their stories using the front-facing camera (and opt to use the in-app teleprompter), or you can use pre-recorded footage from your camera roll.

Lower third titles can be added, and a variety of animated backgrounds are also provided.

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vApps. These widget-like features can be added to your video at any point in the cast, and the audience can touch them to begin interacting with that rich media.

Touchcast is also a social media site, and you can follow other Touchcast users, search topics with hashtags, and bookmark your favorite casts for review later.

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The “touch” side of Touchcast is the social media yin to the “cast” side yang of this app. View what others have created, follow users, bookmark your favorite Touchcasts and more.

A recent update now allows you to embed casts into your website using a WordPress widget, which should bridge the gap for staffs wanting to employ mobile journalism practices, and still have all of their content collected in one, main website for their publication.

Touchcast is free, and currently only available for iPad.

Michael Hernandez

Michael has taught Film/Video Production and Broadcast Journalism since 1999, and advises the Pacemaker-winning Mustang Morning News. He regularly presents seminars on journalism, video and technology-related topics, and is a former JEA National Broadcast Adviser of the Year. Follow him on Twitter and Instagram @cinehead

mhernandez has 52 posts and counting.See all posts by mhernandez

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