The 8 Best Video Recording Apps for iPhone and Android

The camera on your average smartphone rivals even dedicated digital cameras. And when compared to stand-alone cameras even a couple of years old, the newest iPhone often comes out on top.

To harness the power in your pocket or upgrade the bare-bones video recording app on your iPhone or Android device, try one of these top third-party options.

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FiLMic Pro

Filmic Pro on iOS

What We Like
  • The best interface among available options.

  • Full range of professional features.

  • Output comparable with pro-grade camcorders.

What We Don't Like
  • Novice videographers will be totally overwhelmed.

  • Getting good footage requires good skills.

FiLMic Pro is powerful, feature-rich, and ready to line up against any other video application and come out on top. In addition to manual controls for virtually every function, the app brings features from professional video cameras, such as zebra stripes for exposure warnings, focus peaking, and log gamma curve recording for later color grading.

You'll also find more common features like frame rates from 24 to 240 and various file format options. Audio recording is equally professional, with granular controls and advanced tools for experienced filmmakers.  

If you're serious about recording video on your iPhone, this is the app you need. You will, however, pay for it. The app costs $15 and offers in-app purchases for many of the most professional features. 

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What We Like
  • Stocked with dozens of unique professional-level features.

  • Broadest audio recording options available on iOS.

  • Free to use.

What We Don't Like
  • Only available for iOS.

MAVIS is another dense recording tool. It's packed with professional and broadcast-level features like shutter angle, a real-time color vectorscope and exposure waveform, and custom frame rates between 3fps and 240fps. Audio recording options are impressively broad, including audio monitoring passthrough and support for recording audio through devices connected to the iPhone's Lightning port.

Shooting assistant options include zebra bars, false color for exposure and ranges, and focus peaking for precision focusing. Uniquely, selectable bitrates range from 10Mbps up to 100Mbps, and embedded timecodes appear in video files. 

Like FiLMic, MAVIS offers a massive array of professional controls. The interface is clean and professional, but the broad toolset is available only to iOS users, free of cost.

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Movie Pro on iOS

What We Like
  • Lower purchase price requires less serious investment.

  • Doesn't overwhelm the user with options.

What We Don't Like
  • Professional-level shooters might miss some features.

If you're serious about filming on your iPhone, but you don't want to invest in FiLMic Pro, MoviePro is a good compromise. The app offers an impressive number of features, including manual controls for nearly every feature of the app and a range of video recording options.

Audio recording and monitoring options are just as flexible, with on-screen audio meters and Bluetooth microphone input options. 

For users that like taking videos on their devices but might be overwhelmed by the feature range and complexity of FiLMic Pro, MoviePro is an excellent choice. The cost is also comparatively low at just under $10.  

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Open Camera

Open Camera on Android

What We Like
  • Low cost means it's largely accessible.

  • Improves built-in Android camera app significantly.

What We Don't Like
  • Unattractive interface made from off-the-shelf components.

  • Limited to Camera2 API functionality.

Open Camera is primarily built for still images, but its video recording capabilities are impressive as well. It's completely free, with no in-app purchases.

The feature list includes desirable functions that enhance the the built-in camera app. Open Camera also supports the newest Camera2 API. This API allows the app to set manual focus, ISO, exposure, white balance, exposing burst mode, RAW capture (via DNG), and slow-motion video. 

Open Camera is a capable camera application that can ably replace the built-in app on your Android phone at no additional charge. 

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Camera MX

Camera MX for Android
What We Like
  • One of the best still camera apps for Android.

  • Basic video editing tools included in the free download.

What We Don't Like
  • Only basic video editing and recording tools are available.

Camera MX is a feature-rich still photo application that can also record some impressive video. While video recording is not its primary purpose, the video recording segment of the app is easy to use and produces quality clips.

This photo app sports a better interface than the similar Open Camera, with a more polished look. You will also find built-in video editing for trimming and sharing your videos.

Camera MX is free to download and includes in-app purchases for accessing premium features like filters and enhanced capture modes. 

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ProMovie Recorder

Pro Movie video recording app for iOS

What We Like
  • Impressive range of adjustments.

  • Free to download and accessible to everyone.

What We Don't Like
  • The interface isn't as attractive as other apps.

ProMovie Recorder approaches MAVIS and FiLMic Pro in complexity but lacks the intuitive interfaces of those apps. It does offer significant power, from manual controls to bitrate adjustment, but it's not nearly as easy to use as the other applications.

Unlike FiLMic Pro, ProMovie Recorder is free to download. You'll need to make a one-time $3 in-app purchase to remove the watermark from your exported videos.

For students or hobbyists who want to explore a high-fidelity video recording app, this is the place to start, risk-free.

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Videoshop Video Editor

Videoshop Video Editor on iOS
What We Like
  • Simplifies the process of sharing edited mobile videos.

  • Ideal for creating short videos of events and attractions.

What We Don't Like
  • The interface might be too simplistic for video experts.

Videoshop isn't a camera recording app, but it's an essential companion to one. It's a straightforward and capable application for producing simple edited videos on your smartphone.

You can combine multiple clips, add music, insert titles, and apply filters to your sequence, then share it to nearly any social media channel. All of this can be done within the app, with no need for a computer. 

The Videoshop app is free, but access to pro-level features requires in-app purchases that range from $5 to $90.

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LumaFusion non-linear editor on iOS

What We Like
  • Uniquely powerful non-linear editing features.

  • An excellent choice for mobile filmmakers and other pros.

What We Don't Like
  • Relatively high cost.

  • Complexity reduces accessibility.

If you want a professional editor to go with your professional iOS video recording app, look at LumaFusion. It's the single most powerful video editing app on the App Store.

Compatible with iPhones and iPads, LumaFusion delivers professional multi-track editing and many of the tools you'd expect to find in a desktop non-linear editing (NLE) application. It will run you nearly $30, but the pro-level features fit the price.

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