Choosing a Screencasting Tool

Checklist of key criteria for selecting a tool to create interactive software demos (so-called screencasts). Screencasts are not only used on web sites but increasingly also as standalone tutorials or embedded within online help files and other sorts of software documentation.

Theoretically, you can create interactive software demos (screencasts) with any general-purpose Flash editor. Using dedicated screencasting software, however, is much more efficient. A screencasting tool enables you to record your actions directly while you perform them within the demonstrated application. After the recording, you can add captions and interactive elements with a click of a few buttons. You don’t have to be a Flash expert, and you don’t have to know Action Script.

To create a small screencast, even most low-cost screencasting tools are adequate. However, when it comes to more professional and strategic requirements, there are big differences. For example, not all tools let you translate a screencast into foreign languages, or update an existing screencast when there has been a new release of the demonstrated software. The following checklist can help you not to miss an important requirement when choosing a screencasting program.

Note: You can find a list of tools under Screencasting Tools.

show/hide sectionBasic groups of tools
show/hide sectionRecording
show/hide sectionEditing
show/hide sectionOutput
show/hide sectionUser-friendliness
show/hide sectionTranslation process
show/hide sectionUsability
show/hide sectionStrategic questions

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This page was last updated 08/2017