One of my favorite types of software/application is screen capture software. It’s immensely useful for creating training videos, product reviews and more.
A simple screen cap video can save a whole lot of hassle when trying to explain a task to a freelancer, client or colleague.
There are loads of different screen recording software options out there. Some of the most famous (which I plan to review in due course) are Camtasia and Screenflow.
However, both Camtasia and Screenflow are relatively expensive. Screenflow is also for Macs only. Both require the installation of software.
There are also free options out there – such as OBS or Camstudio – but they can often be clunky to use.
What if there was a better option for someone looking to make basic screen recordings? Something like a Chrome browser extension? Well, luckily there is!
What Is Screencastify?
It’s a Chrome browser extension that allows you to record your screen. You install the extension, and then you can get started making recordings!
Basically, you can make a video that shows what you are doing on your screen, as well as record an accompanying audio track (useful if you’re narrating a tutorial or something) or you can use system audio.
How Much Does It Cost?
Screencastify offers two pricing plans:
- Premium – $2 per month (paid annually)
The free version allows you to record the screen, record audio etc. However, you have fewer export options, and your videos will also have quite a prominent watermark in the upper right hand corner of the screen.
I used the free version for about half a day to test it out. I was impressed enough to purchased the premium version, and am very glad I did. I’ve already produced a number of videos using Screencastify premium, and the extra features and lack of watermark make it well worthwhile, especially when you consider the competitive price.
- Automatic saving to Google Drive
- No software install required
- Export as MP4 (premium version)
- Competitive pricing
- Easy to use
- Record desktop
- Overlay webcam
- Works on Chromebook
- Basic editing features
- Can be a bit fiddly
- Not the smoothest framerates
- No lifetime pricing option
Overall, I’m a massive fan of Screencastify. It’s helped me turn my Chromebook into a machine that I can use for ~90% of all work I need to do on a daily basis (in fact, only intensive Excel work and video editing is off the cards now). It’s very impressive how much you can do with a basic browser extension.
As a solution for recording my screen, and overlaying narration or system audio, it’s so easy and effective.
Is Screencastify as powerful or fully-featured as something like Camtasia? No – of course not. It’s probably going to be a long time before a browser extension can really do the “heavy lifting” that an installable software can. However, for what it is, Screencastify is incredibly impressive.
If you’ve got any desire to make screen recording videos (for training, business, or pleasure) then I strongly recommend that you install Screencastify and give it a try.
Use the free version first to get a feel for how it works, and I think you’ll find yourself upgrading to the premium edition in no time. At just overt $20 per year, it really is exceptionally good value.
Ease Of Use
Value For Money
If you're looking to record your screen (including audio narration or system audio) then I strongly suggest you take a look at Screencastify. It's a powerful, flexible, and easy-to-use Chrome browser extension that makes screen recording oh-so-easy. It isn't as comprehensive as offline software, such as Camtasia, but for the low price and simplicity of using it, I would say that Screencastify is good enough for most users. Combine it with a video editing program, and you've got a powerful software stack for creating high quality screen capture videos!
7 thoughts on “Screencastify Review 2019”
Thanks for your review. Do you prefer Screencastify to Camtasia? The price is certainly a lot more appealing!
Hi Harry, thanks for taking the time to comment.
To be honest, I actually prefer Screencastify now. The price is a huge factor, naturally. I also love the fact that Screencastify is browser-extension based, as opposed to downloadable (I think this is better for security and also allows it to work on more devices, like Chromebooks).
I can’t discern much difference in video quality, and I never much liked Camtastia’s in-built video editor so that doesn’t have much value for me.
I’ll be doing a full review of Camtasia in the near future anyway.
Can it do 4k video? What about 60fps?
I’m pretty sure Screencastify can do 60fps, but unsure about 4k. I imagine that depends on your monitor/screen resolution and whether your machine is fast enough to handle it.
I’ll do some digging and find out.
Thanks for the review!
What about quicktime player. I use that one. I really like it, easy to use.
Screen capture of full-screen or selected window, enhanced mouse-clicks, with or without use of sound.
For Apple users a perfect free solution, I think
I’m looking for a simple video editing tool (Mac OS) to make some extra overlays with a text-block for extra information or to mark things. Do you have a tip?
Hi Mieke, thanks for your comment.
I wasn’t aware you could do that with Quicktime player, so that’s an excellent tip – thanks for sharing. I will have to look into it (although I’m not a Mac user).
I’m not so flash on video editing tools as that isn’t really my domain. I get my brother to help me with video stuff,but he always uses Premiere Pro and After Effects I think.
What about iMovie? When I last used Mac, that seemed to have some basic functionality for editing that might suit.
Screencastify do not stand behind their product. My experience is that it’s terrible software. I spent 4+ hours changing settings and trying to get the right mic configuration to no avail. It would only use the external mic to record video instead of the internal sound recording. I emailed support at least 15 times and eventually they made me feel like it was my problem or my fault and that this was probably the first example of such a failure they had ever ever ever experienced. And then when i said i could no longer justify spending more time trying all the different options to fix the problem the response was “I cannot process your refund since we have a no-refund policy which is detailed in our terms. I’m afraid you’ll get the same response from anyone else in the company. “. LESSON: anyone who reverts immediately to say that the refusal to do the right thing and respond to a genuine complaint is buried in “the terms and conditions” is a BIG red flag. Surely if you have a good product and good support but cannot solve the exceptional occasion when some technical thing causes a failure to use the product then you would be more than happy to refund that customers purchase. But in this case the immediate response was a denial. All that says is that the problem probably isnt unique and that they certainly do not stand behind their product.