Armed with only their smart phones, a group of student journalists tested the wide variety of apps and gear to see what works and what doesn’t in support of mobile reporting…
Graduate students at the University of California at Berkeley have developed a 46-page Mobile Reporting Field Guide that features reviews of apps and gear built around smartphones, to see what works best for reporting from the field.
“We wanted to help journalists easily navigate reviews of gear and apps that would be most useful to them,” wrote student Casey Capachi in an email to the BBG. “We wanted to review apps with journalists’ needs specifically in mind.”
The guidebook is available free of charge on the iPad, downloadable as an iBook in Apple’s iBookstore, complete with embedded videos that enhance the document. For those without an iPad, the guidebook is available as a PDF.
The guidebook leans heavily on products developed for the iPhone, thus the apps mentioned may not necessarily be available on the Android market. Video apps include reviews of FILMIC Pro, ProCamera, and CinePro and utilize a four scale rating system. Camera +, ProCamera, and Photoshop Express, among others are reviewed in the Photography section. The list also includes audio and video editing apps.
Capachi had a hard time picking a favorite from the apps, but recommended Filterstorm.
“The amount of adjustment you can make to a single photo is incredible,” wrote Capachi. “It is also highly useful when you are trying to file photos back to the newsroom as you are able to fill in information and label your photos so they won’t be confused. When I post photos to my Instagram account caseycapachi, I get a little artistic and sometimes blend images together with Filterstorm to make something completely different.”
The section covering gear tested by the students includes 25 pages with specs, pros and cons, detailed descriptions, ratings, pictures, and video of the tested products.
Capachi’s favorite part of the class was testing out the gear.
“As a mobile journalist, it was like being unleashed in a candy store.”
Reporting by Sharman Bruni
Category: Ideas and Innovation