Microsoft today announced the new versions of Windows Movie Maker and Photo Gallery for Windows 7 and Windows 8. As we had earlier seen Microsoft decided to drop Windows Live branding with Windows 8 – as a result, the new version does not have the Live branding.
The Windows Essentials 2012 (no Live branding here) contains new SkyDrive for Windows app, Windows Live Mail, Windows Live Family Safety, Windows Live Writer, Windows Live Messenger (they still have Live Branding), Outlook Connector Pack and the new Windows Movie Maker 2012 and Windows Photo Gallery 2012. If you have already have earlier version, they will be updated.
Windows Essentials 2012
Of these Windows Movie Maker 2012 and Windows Photo Gallery 2012 has new features while other programs might be bug fix versions. We will post here as soon as more details are available. So in this post will just check what are the new features in Windows Movie Maker 2012 and Windows Photo Gallery 2012. The new versions also takes advantage of some advances of Windows 8.
The new version shows Build 16.4.3503.728
During the installation you’ll see this message -
If you have Windows Live Mesh installed, it will automatically be removed if you install the new Movie Maker or Photo Gallery (available as part of Windows Essentials 2012).
Microsoft SkyDrive will be installed in place of Windows Live Mesh. To sync folders from the cloud to all of your PCs, you will need to install SkyDrive on all of your PCs or Macs.
If you do not install Windows Essentials 2012 on any of your PCs, Windows Live Mesh will keep working just like before.
If you have uninstalled Windows Live Mesh, you can still reinstall it. It’s available as part of Windows Live Essentials 2011.
Please note that you cannot install and run both Windows Essentials 2012 (with the new Movie Maker or Photo Gallery) and Windows Live Mesh on the same PC.
If you are a Mesh user, please read this.
Also, the Messenger companion will be uninstalled and it’ll no longer be available in your browser.
The above screenshot is of Internet Explorer showing Messenger Companion Add on before installing Windows Essentials 2012. So these are some of the points to be noted before installation.
Let us check what are the new features of Windows Movie Maker and Windows Photo Gallery -
Windows Movie Maker 2012
As you know Windows 8 has some major advancements in hardware accelerated graphics and the new Movie maker takes advantages of these enhancements.
Video Stabilization- In today’s world, more & more people take videos using their mobile devices on the move. So many a times, we get wobbly videos as videos shake.Taking advantage of Windows 8 technology, Movie Maker smoothens out wobbly videos. There are variety of Video stabilization options provided, just choose the video and the option and Movie Maker will smoothen it out.
Please note this option of Video Stabilization is available, only when installed in Windows 8.
Collaboration with Music Service– Many a times, its hard to find not only the right piece of music, but music with appropriate rights that can be used by the user for adding it to the movie clip. And it happens that the music clip gets stripped ou,t once it’s published to YouTube for not having the appropriate rights. Microsoft has collaborated with AudioMicro, Free Music Archive and the Vimeo Music Store which will help you in searching for videos with proper rights. Thus you now have the option of adding music from your PC or these services.
Waveform visualizations- Now that we have choice in adding music with proper rights, the new Movie Maker also provides an option to control how well it plays with your videos. Waveform visualization has been provided to music track and your videos so as to see where you need to cut or trim your video to match your music.
In this new version, an option has been added for third-party audio tracks for narration. Many of us narrate while taking the video. Now in this version its possible to add narration, either as an audio file or as a video file. Or if you just want to record your voice using your PC,that can also be done. We therefore have option to add sound from 3 different sources. An option is also provided to select which audio you want to emphasize.
Text Effects –Many of us always like to add text to movies, but sometimes these texts gets lost and it makes it hard to read. Now we have an option to add an outline around the text. That will make it stand out and ensure that it doesn’t gets lost in the background.
H.264 by default- H.264 is one of the most popular format today and is becoming default for cameras and video sharing. Now Movie Maker saves to this format by default, making it easier to publish your video to popular sharing websites.
These were some of the enhancements in the new Movie Maker. We will take them in detail in later posts.
Windows Photo Gallery 2012
Collage Option – One of the features requested by many was of making nice collages and many of us used AutoCollage 2008 trial version from Microsoft Research, or some collage making freeware or had to buy some expensive software for that. Now Windows Photo Gallery provides the Collage option. Just select the minimum number of Photos required for Collage and it makes a nice Collage out of it. Hope in future we will have some option to control the Collage.
Vimeo new publisher partner – Vimeo is the new Publish Partner. That means you can share your videos straight to Vimeo from both Photo Gallery and Movie Maker.
These are some enhancements introduced by Microsoft, in the new Movie Maker and Photo Gallery. These have been brought after listening to users feedback.