GoPro says it'll finally be releasing a new desktop editing app later this year for the best GoPro cameras, which should be a true replacement for the one it discontinued in 2017. But there's an unfortunate catch – the new app will only be free for GoPro subscribers.
During a GoPro earnings call on August 3, the company's CEO Nick Woodman said that in Q4 (in other words, sometime between October and December) it'll be "excited to introduce an all-new desktop app that will make it easy for GoPro subscribers to organize and edit their content".
This is good news for GoPro subscribers who'd rather edit videos on a PC or Mac than on the GoPro Quik mobile app. GoPro does also have the 'GoPro Player + ReelSteady' app on desktop, but that is more of a media player with specialist editing tools, rather than a genuine Quik equivalent.
Promisingly, Woodman added "our new desktop app will sync with our subscribers’ cloud and mobile app to provide a consistent and convenient experience across platforms". But then came the slight stinger: "GoPro subscribers will enjoy full access to the desktop app and all of its powerful features at no additional charge."
It isn't yet clear whether the new desktop editing app will also be available to non-subscribers, perhaps for a small monthly charge. But GoPro's CEO added that the company is looking for the app to challenge the best video editing software, as it'll also offer tools for footage shot on any camera.
As Woodman stated: "There will also be a premium-level subscription offering for consumers that want to import footage from any camera, expanding GoPro’s relevance as a digital imaging software solution to a much broader audience – an opportunity we intend to aggressively pursue over time".
While that's an interesting direction, GoPro owners who don't have a GoPro Subscription (which costs $49.99 / £49.99 / AU$69.99 per year, outside of special offers) may be somewhat miffed if it isn't available as an option for them.
Analysis: Good news, but only for GoPro subscribers
The lack of a GoPro Quik desktop app to match its mobile version has been a frustrating omission for the past few years, so it's good to hear one is finally en route. But it's also a slight shame that it'll likely be another subscription-only feature.
GoPro did have a free Quik desktop app several years ago (which replaced the older GoPro Studio), but it was discontinued as the company focused on turning the Quik mobile app into a one-stop video editor.
The latter brought handy new features (like unlimited cloud backup), but was also only available with a standalone subscription (for $1.99 / £1.79 / AU$2.99 per month, or $9.99 / £9.49 / AU$14.99 annually) or as part of the broader GoPro Subscription. GoPro's new desktop app will likely have a similar setup.
GoPro's move back into software comes as it tries to grow its Subscriber base (which it revealed stands at 2.44 million people, up 27% from last year). The arrival of a desktop app with the same simple drag-and-drop controls, automated highlight edits and music syncing as the mobile Quik app certainly sounds useful, as long as it's a bit more stable than the slightly flaky, old version of desktop Quik.
Whether it offers enough for those who don't already have a GoPro Subscription is something we'll have to wait to find out – the desktop app will likely be announced alongside the rumored GoPro Hero 12 Black in September.
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Mark is TechRadar's Senior news editor. Having worked in tech journalism for a ludicrous 17 years, Mark is now attempting to break the world record for the number of camera bags hoarded by one person. He was previously Cameras Editor at Trusted Reviews, Acting editor on Stuff.tv, as well as Features editor and Reviews editor on Stuff magazine. As a freelancer, he's contributed to titles including The Sunday Times, FourFourTwo and Arena. And in a former life, he also won The Daily Telegraph's Young Sportswriter of the Year. But that was before he discovered the strange joys of getting up at 4am for a photo shoot in London's Square Mile.