Common Sense Review
Updated September 2015

MixBit

Video-sharing tool lets kids combine original and web-based clips
Common Sense Rating 3
Teacher Rating
Not Yet Rated
  • Navigate the app and add new MixBit creations here.
  • View featured, draft, and published clips, and browse other people's MixBit creations. Options include account settings, in-app tour, terms of service, and MixBit contact.
  • The gallery of clips includes title, hash tag, number of views, and overall length of video creation. Colored bars below image show how many clips are included in each MixBit creation.
  • Account settings allow for anonymous publishing and connection through a variety of social media accounts, including Twitter, Facebook, Google+, and Tumblr.
  • The Quick Tour offers detailed, picture-based, in-app support for creating videos, responding, collaborating, and remixing clips with other MixBit users.
Pros
Teens can easily collaborate with other users and make longform videos.
Cons
Automated editing is handy but can feel limiting for more advanced makers.
Bottom Line
An easy-to-use video tool with collaboration features that enhance creativity, but look elsewhere if you're looking to teach teens to cut video.
Kim Alessi
Common Sense Reviewer
Classroom teacher
Common Sense Rating 3
Engagement Is the product stimulating, entertaining, and engrossing? Will kids want to return? 5

A reasonably intuitive interface allows teens to piece together up to an hour of video, from their own camera or other users' web-based clips, making for endless opportunities for self-expression and creativity.

Pedagogy Is learning content seamlessly baked-in, and do kids build conceptual understanding? Is the product adaptable and empowering? Will skills transfer? 3

Teens can invite others and collaborate on videos and the skills they learn can be applied to similar apps, too. The automated editing makes creation easy but undermines some essential skills-building.

Support Does the product take into account learners of varying abilities, skill levels, and learning styles? Does it address both struggling and advanced students? 3

Teens can access a quick tour at any time. App functions are greatly enhanced with a user-created MixBit web account, where teens can also find mobile and web FAQs. 

About our ratings and privacy evaluation.
How Can Teachers Use It?

Incorporate MixBit into class projects involving collaboration or research. Kids could research a social studies project by gathering source video from anywhere in the world; document an experiment with video from lab partners or scientists from other countries; or blend interpretations of a poem with authors from around the globe.

The app relies on social media technology for sharing but purposefully lacks its pesky associative features ("liking" and "following," even posting comments or viewing usernames), making the tool liberating for teachers and sidestepping certain privacy concerns.

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What's It Like?

MixBit combines the convenience of mobile video creation with the global connectedness of social media. Teens shoot original video or take pictures from their in-app camera, and can browse and borrow video shot by other MixBit users shared through the app. MixBit records in 16-second clips, and teens can stitch together up to 256 clips and images, totaling one hour of video. A free MixBit account is required to add borrowed clips into original projects.

With MixBit, users can focus on making longer, more collaborative projects, rather than short, showy snippets. The app's social media features also emphasize creation over garnering approval. Users can view and borrow clips from others and share creations with the online MixBit community, but there's no "liking" or "following" people. In fact, teens can't even comment on people's video or see usernames, only MixBit titles.

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Is It Good For Learning?

MixBit can be a solid classroom tool because it lets teens produce longer video (up to one hour) and access clips from around the world. Teens aren't required to have a MixBit account to compile original projects, but they'll need one to add borrowed clips to their own projects and to search clips by keyword.

The app records in 16-second clips and color-codes, numbers, and time-stamps each clip. An optional grid helps frame the subject. Touch and hold your finger on the screen to record (but only in landscape mode). Recording stops at 16 seconds, then auto-resumes if a finger stays on the screen. Clips can be re-ordered, and pre-made animated themes and music (from the user's library or from a selection of built in songs) can be layered on top for some extra flavor. Transitions and cuts, however, get automatically added by the app. This auto-editing makes things much easier and serendipitous but takes away some control. While this won't become a go-to video editing tool, it's a great option for video projects where collaboration is key and time is a factor.

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See how teachers are using MixBit