How do I edit videos

Apps / software Edit videos: These free tools are there


Even laypeople can use the smartphone to record their own videos quickly and easily. Whether for your own YouTube channel or to send it to friends on Whatsapp: As a rule, you still have to cut and edit your film after recording. There are several programs for this. Both paid versions with more functions and free tools are offered. The latter are usually sufficient for domestic use, they offer all essential functions. We introduce you to some free video editors for desktop and smartphone.

Free video editors for desktop

Windows Movie Maker / Microsoft Photos

One of the most famous free editing programs is Windows Movie Maker. The problem: It has not been further developed for several years and is therefore no longer up-to-date, the support has been discontinued. The successor program is Microsoft Photos for Windows 10. With the included video editor, you can combine pictures and videos into a film, insert text, effects and music, and even have films created automatically. The user interface is very simple and clear, so that even beginners can use it well. The video editor is included in Windows 10, and MS Photos can be downloaded from Microsoft.

DaVinci Resolve

DaVinci Resolve is available as a free and premium version for macOS, Windows and Linux. In addition to editing, it offers many other functions such as visual effects and sound processing. Therefore it is more suitable for people who already have some experience in video editing. DaVinci Resolve is particularly good at color correction. Here you can get the free version of DaVinci Resolve.



Another free video editing program is Shotcut. It is available for macOS, Windows and Linux. Shotcut supports a number of file formats and image resolutions up to 4K, you can even work with green screen here. The user interface consists of individual panels that you can arrange and select individually. You can download Shotcut from Heise-Download.


The Lightworks program is a tool for professionals. For example, it offers color corrections and the ability to work with masks. The full version of Lightworks is used to create Hollywood films such as "The Wolf of Wall Street" or "Pulp Fiction". The free, reduced version is also suitable for experienced private filmmakers. You can use Lightworks with Windows, Linux and macOS. You can download Lightworks from Heise-Download.


VSDC Free Video Editor

This free program for Windows has all the basics for video editing. You can also use it to record your screen, for example for a tutorial. VSDC is also suitable for laypeople who already have some experience with videos. Another advantage is that the user interface language is German. You can download the video editor from the manufacturer.

Free video editor apps

There are also various apps with which you can edit films directly on your smartphone. We present a selection of free apps here. These usually offer additional functions via in-app purchase.



With the Android app YouCut you can, for example, create videos for YouTube and other social media. To do this, save your clips in a smaller file size to speed up the upload. In addition, your video will not be watermarked. Practical: You can find royalty-free music directly in the app. You can download YouCut from the Google Play Store.



This app is available for Android and iOS. Again, you can trim, add music and filters, and share the clip directly. The app guides you step by step through the editing process, which makes it perfect for beginners. FilmoraGo can be found in the Google Play Store (for Android), for iOS you can download FilmoraGo from the App Store.


The app from the action camera manufacturer GoPro is available for Android and iOS. Its name already indicates a special feature: you can edit videos very quickly with this app, and many automatic functions do your work for you. This is particularly useful for beginners, professionals probably miss the opportunity to intervene themselves. Quik offers extra functions for GoPro videos. You can download Quik from the Google Play Store (Android), but you can also find the Quik app in the App Store (iOS).



The free Apple app for video editing is iMovie, available for iOS and macOS. You can use it to cut movies, add music and effects, and create trailers for your finished movie. iMovie supports 4K, you can also share your clips directly from the app or publish them on YouTube, for example. You can download iMovie from Apple for iOS and macOS.