With reports of Final Cut Pro layoffs and stories of Apple moving key engineers off the FCP team to temporarily focus on more pressing software assignments, there’s been growing concern that Apple was losing interest in its professional video editing software.
Rumors of a significant Final Cut Pro update have been lingering for months. Back in April of 2010, one FCP user frustrated with less than stellar updates emailed Steve Jobs and asked if Apple still cared about the pro video crowd.
Jobs responded that Apple still does, in fact, care about the pro video crowd and that the next release of Final Cut Pro “will be awesome.”
One month later came reports that Apple was looking to dumb down Final Cut Pro in order to make it more appealing to the consumer crowd. Apple was quick to refute these reports, with Apple spokesman explaining,
Final Cut Pro is the first choice for professional video editors, and we’ve never been more excited about its future. The next version of Final Cut is going to be awesome, and our pro customers are going to love it.
This past November, a Mac user emailed Jobs about the prospects for a 64-bit FCP update.
Jobs cryptically responded, “Stay tuned and buckle up.”
Buckle up? Promises from the head honcho himself that the next FCP update will be awesome? All in all, that a lot of hype for a product whose last significant update was back in July of 2009.
But now comes word via TechCrunch that the next iteration of Final Cut Pro will feature significant changes.
According our very own people familiar with the matter, a small group of video editors were on the Apple campus recently in order to preview the new version of video editing software, which is in the same space as Avid and Adobe Premier. Apparently Apple is still putting the finishing touches on “the biggest overhaul to Final Cut Pro since the original version was created over 10 years ago” and wanted pro user feedback. Emphasis on “pro.”
One source described the new release as encompassing everything from low level architectural changes to a complete redesign of the user interface. It’s safe to say the newest version will be 64 bit as that’s what users have clamored the most for.
Specific reports from folks who demo’d the software note that the changes are “dramatic and ambitious.”
A release date is murky, but TechCrunch’s sources indicate that a Spring 2011 launch and may coincide with the 2011 NAB conference scheduled to run from April 9 – 14.
We can’t wait.