Touchcast for iPad review: Great features for video pros

You start out by choosing the style of your title (also known as the lower third) just like the fancy graphic you see at the bottom of the screen for a television news cast. The app has a few templates to get you started with news, reviews, sports, and a how-to layout, but you also can create your own. With your basic layout selected, you can enter a title that your audience will see.

You could start recording now for a straight video with a title at the bottom, but here's where TouchCast makes it more interesting. Check your available vApps by touching a button in the lower right. Like I mentioned above, you can add a photo or Google Map location, but you also can add a stock ticker, Google News stories, Flickr images, Web pages, a Twitter feed, and more. You can even put up a poll where you pick the answers so your users can vote. When you're done adding vApps, they'll show up in the lower left of the recording screen, ready to be used in your video.

TouchCast
Use vApps to bring up info boxes onscreen that your audience can tap to get more info. Screenshot by Jason Parker/CNET

Beyond vApps, there are a couple of other tools at your disposal. TouchCast has several video filters you can apply to your video to give it a unique look. It also lets you quickly switch to a Whiteboard so you can draw a diagram onscreen. And when you have a lot to say in your video, you can use a pre-written script and display it in an onscreen teleprompter that your audience will not be able to see.

With this toolset, some creativity, and a bit of practice, people could use TouchCast to make really impressive broadcasts.

TouchCast
Use a teleprompter or just speak freely as you perform your Web cast. Screenshot by Jason Parker/CNET

This app needs some time
When you look at everything you can do, TouchCast has a lot of potential, but -- aside from a couple of gems -- you're not going to find it browsing through the current videos. It's not the fault of the brave people making videos, however; I think it's mostly because the audience is not yet large enough and people are really just trying to learn how to use it. As time wears on, I expect to see more complex videos that take advantage of all this app has to offer, but in the meantime, you might want to get started and learn the tools yourself to start making great videos about hobbies, how-tos, or whatever interests you.

Also, though the app lets you add a few sound effects, there's no musical intro or outros, making the videos seem a little bland. Hopefully this is something that will come in a future update.

Still, if you want to make broadcast quality videos with nothing more than your iPad, TouchCast has all the right tools. It's just going to take some practice.

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    Where to Buy

    TouchCast (iOS)

    Part Number: id603258418

    Free

    Quick Specifications See All

    • Category Social networking
      Video and screencasting
    • Compatibility iOS