With the move to Chromebooks, teachers have lost access to many of their trusted multimedia tools, like Movie Maker, Photostory, and Audacity. When attempting to create engaging, real-world projects for students, such as podcasting, this can be barrier.
Thankfully, there are many developers bringing multimedia tools to the web.
For those familiar with GarageBand, Bandlab with feel very intuitive, giving users the ability to build multi-track audio projects from captured audio (recorded via the computer's microphone) and built-in synthesized instruments.
Students making podcasts can edit and manipulate multiple audio sources, perfect for assembling interviews or multi-person stories. For added professionalism, students can also compose their own music.
It's incredibly easy to use, and integrates directly with students' Google accounts, so it all works seamlessly in the cloud. For aspiring podcasters, it even offers a platform on which to publish and promote your audio creations.
Like Bandlab, Soundation takes a popular digital audio workstation (or DAW) as its basis, and users of Logic will feel instantly at home with its interface. While more complex, and offering more options and tweaks, it is a relatively intuitive piece of software.
For classroom audio projects, Bandlab is certainly the more user-friendly of the two and conducive to students bringing their work into the online world with its built-in community.
NB: These are new tools and are currently free. They may move to a premium/freemium model if the tool becomes more popular, or completely disappear if they fail to gain traction.