Canva has announced a slew of new products, including a video editing tool and an education offering

Supplied / Canva
  • Graphics design software company Canva has announced a slew of new products at its Summer Season Opener in Sydney.
  • Among the announcements are a video editing tool, a free product for schools named Canva for Education, and a new platform for third-party app integration.
  • The company also announced it has joined a global pledge to “give back” to the community.
  • Visit Business Insider Australia’s homepage for more stories.

Australian graphic design platform Canva has announced a slew of new products launching in 2020 at its December Season Opener event in Sydney, including a video editing tool, a new platform for third-party app extensions, and a free product for schools.

The flagship announcement is Canva Video, which is clearly intended as the video equivalent of the company’s image editing software. Like the core image product, Canva Video is pitched at people who want to make slick-looking videos including graphical elements like text overlays without contending with the more difficult interfaces of more pro-oriented products.

“Much like its graphic design offering, Canva is making video editing effortless with the launch of Canva Video,” the company said in a media release. “Users will be able to create sleek, professional videos for free.”

Canva Video will offer a content library including “thousands of free stock videos, hundreds of free music tracks and thousands of free animated stickers”, as well as templates and a library of “professional” animations.

“Our mission is to empower everyone to design anything without any complex software or having to go to different sources for different elements. We’re bringing the same experience to our video editing tool,” Cameron Adams, cofounder and chief product officer of Canva, said in a statement.

“This means we take stock video, soundtracks, layouts, typography, animations and integrate it into one experience.”

Canva Video enters a crowded market. As well as competing free offerings like Apple’s iMovie, there are plenty of simple video editing apps on desktop and mobile which also boast libraries templates and animations. Canva’s pitch is that its product is particularly simple to use, much like its photo editing tool.

The company announced Canva Apps, a platform for third-party apps and extensions within the existing Canva platform. AS part of the company’s goal to be “a one-stop-shop for all design needs”, Canva Apps will allow developers to integrate their apps into Canva.

At launch, this includes integrations by apps and platforms including Dropbox, Google Drive, Instagram, and PhotoMosh. Users will be able to pull images from those services and add them to Canva projects, automatically – simple functionality, but clearly as part of a longer term play to make Canva a central hub for design projects.

On the software front, Canva announced a new desktop app which the company says “paves the way” for notifications and offline support, though these features aren’t available at launch. A beta is available from today.

Canva announced something of an old-school play into the realm of the physical with the Canva Design Lab – a retail kiosk intended for shoppers to “create a design, upload their own content and print the finished creation” while in-store. The kiosks will roll out across the US and Australia next year, and will make for an interesting experiment as to whether the company’s offering can translate away from its online-only base.

Also announced was Canva for Education, a free product offering for schools and other educational institutions. It will offer thousands of templates and a library of “premium” royalty-free images, as well as features intended to facilitate collaboration between students and teachers.

Canva for Education launches with a beta available for Australian schools.

“Students and educators no longer need to spend hours learning complex and expensive design tools, or struggling to find access to effective teaching materials and templates,” said Georgia Vidler, Canva’s director of product.

Canva announced it has joined the ‘Pledge 1%’ movement, which is a commitment to dedicate 1% of equity, profit, time and resources towards “making the world a better place”.

“Companies have a huge role to play in helping to shape the world we live in and we feel like the 1% Pledge is an incredible program which will help us to use our company’s time, resources, product and equity to do just that,” said CEO Melanie Perkins in a statement. “We believe the old adage ‘do no evil’ is no longer enough today and hope to live up to our value to ‘be a force for good’.”

In October, Canva was valued at $4.7 billion, after its most recent funding round saw high-profile investors throw another $125 million into the start-up. The valuation comes at a time of growing skepticism for tech unicorns, which are often criticised for displaying meteoric growth but an inability to convert large userbases into consistent profit.

Canva’s new announcements are clearly an effort to broaden its appeal beyond being a slick graphics editing tool for beginners – and perhaps extract more value from the large number of users who utilise the company’s free tools.

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