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50 Animation Apps & Software: The Complete Guide (2024)

by | Last updated Jan 16, 2024

Working in animation requires various software and computer applications. So, what are the best animation apps? 

Here’s a quick guide.

What animation app is best for you? 

The type of animation app you go for depends on your requirements for the project. 

Also, some software will be better suited for you based on your experience level. Look at things like an app’s ease of use, how well it works for your needs, and what types of applications you want to learn.

There are also 3D animation techniques that might be relevant to whatever project you’re working on that could impact the type of software you choose to use. Here’s an explanation of the primary techniques

With that, let’s take a look at the best animation apps, starting with 2D and then moving on to 3D. 

What are the top 2D animation apps?

2D animation software and apps are available online and for download. Here’s a look at the best options.

Adobe Animate CC

Adobe Animate CC is a powerful animation software created by Adobe that allows users to create professional-grade 2D animations. It offers a wide range of features, such as the ability to create frame-by-frame animations, add special effects, and incorporate audio and video elements. The program is easy to use and perfect for creating stunning animations.

The software’s key features are its intuitive user interface and powerful tools. It also supports a variety of image formats, making it a great choice for both professionals and beginners.

Price: $20.99/month

Adobe After Effects

Adobe After Effects is a video editing software that’s used to create motion graphics and visual effects. It’s commonly used in the film and television industry. What is it known for? Its powerful animation capabilities. So, it can be used to edit existing footage or create completely new projects.

The software’s key features are compositing, keying, tracking, rotoscoping, texturing, and 3D animation. It also offers a wide range of tools for color correction, audio mixing, and creating special effects.

Price: $20.99/month

Adobe Character Animator

Adobe Character Animator is a motion capture and animation program for creating 2D characters. It uses a webcam and microphone to capture facial expressions and voice, which is then used to animate a character in real-time for video, film, and gaming projects.

The software’s key features are live animation, lip-syncing, and real-time puppeteering. It can also be used for streaming and broadcasting live performances.

Price: $54.99/month (as part of the Creative Cloud All Apps plan)

SVGator

SVGator is an online SVG animation software that allows users to create smooth, responsive, cross-browser animations. It’s easy to use and doesn’t require coding knowledge. Plus, it’s also compatible with all major browsers.

The software’s key features are drag-and-drop effects and a timeline editor for creating complex animations. It also offers vector drawing tools and an extensive library of SVG elements.

Price: $0-$20/month (depending on the plan)

Toon Boom Harmony

Toon Boom Harmony is a powerful animation software used to create high-quality 2D animation. It offers a variety of tools and features to help professional animators create stunning visuals and complex animations.

The software’s key features include a powerful drawing and painting system, a unified camera system, and intuitive animation tools. It’s also compatible with several file formats, making it easy to share projects with colleagues.

Price: $25.50-$117.50/month (depending on the plan)

Pencil2D

Pencil2D is an open-source animation software program that’s used to create traditional 2D hand-drawn animations. It’s free and easy to use for beginners and professionals alike.

The software’s key features are its intuitive user interface, support for images, vector graphics, and audio files, as well as its onion skinning feature which allows users to see several frames at once. Pencil2D also allows users to export their animations to various formats, such as GIF, AVI, and PNG.

Price: Free

Pixel Studio

Pixel Studio is a creative platform for creating stunning digital art. It offers a suite of tools and features that make it easy for artists to quickly create high-quality digital art – perfect for professionals and hobbyists alike.

The software’s key features are a user-friendly interface, a powerful brush engine, and full compatibility with other popular software. Pixel Studio is also available for free, making it accessible to all artists.

Price: Free

MotionBook

MotionBook is an interactive animation platform for iPads that allows users to create, share, and edit animations quickly and easily. It features a wide variety of tools and features to help users create animations with stunning visuals and professional-grade quality. MotionBook is perfect for animators of all skill levels.

Plus, the software is easy to use, so you don’t need any prior animation experience. MotionBook is also constantly updated with new features and improvements.

Price: $4.99

RoughAnimator

RoughAnimator is a professional animation app that allows users to create 2D animations on their mobile devices. It offers a range of features, including onion skinning, frame-by-frame editing, and drawing tools. It also supports various video formats and is compatible with both Android and iOS devices.

The software’s key features include vector-based artwork, animation timeline, and frame-by-frame drawing. In fact, it’s used to create professional-quality animation for commercials, games, and more.

Price: $5.99

OpenToonz

OpenToonz is a free, open-source animation software. It’s based on the software used to create the popular anime series, Studio Ghibli, and it has a range of features that make it popular among animators.

The software’s key features are vector drawing tools, strong support for bitmap editing, and a powerful but simple 2D animation workflow. It’s also easy to use and has a large, active user community.

Price: Free

FlipaClip

FlipaClip is an animation app that allows users to create cartoons and animations on their phones or tablets. It’s easy to use and has a library of tools to help users create unique animations, whether they’re beginners or experienced animators.

The software’s key features are drawing tools, animation timelines, cut-out animation, and layers. It also has a wide range of sound effects and music tracks to help bring animations to life. With FlipaClip, users can share their work with the community and even collaborate with other animators.

Price: $9.99

TupiTube

TupiTube is an online platform that allows users to create and share animated videos. It’s free and beginner-friendly, with a wide range of tools and features to help make the animation process simple and fun. It also offers a range of content to choose from, including backgrounds, characters, and soundtracks.

The software’s key features include a simple drag-and-drop interface and real-time preview capabilities, so users can easily track their progress. It also has a library of motion graphics and effects to add an extra layer of polish to animations.

Price: Free

Synfig Studio

Synfig Studio is an open-source 2D animation software that’s available for Windows, macOS, and Linux. It’s used for creating vector-based animations and is popular among amateurs and professional animators alike.

The software’s key features are its support for layers, its ability to animate using both bitmaps and vector graphics, and its compatibility with a variety of audio and video formats. Since Synfig Studio is free to download and use, it’s a great choice for anyone who wants to start animating. 

Price: Free

Draw Cartoons 2

Draw Cartoons 2 is an application that allows users to create their own cartoons. It offers a variety of tools and features to help users create and customize their own characters, backgrounds, and stories. Plus, the app is suitable for all ages and skill levels.

The software’s key features are easy-to-use tools, a rich library of art assets, and a community of creators. It’s an excellent choice for aspiring animators and cartoonists who want to create their own original content.

Price: $9.99

Stick Nodes

Stick Nodes is a powerful stick figure animation app designed for mobile devices. It’s easy to use and offers a variety of tools and features to help users create high-quality animations quickly.

The software’s key features include an intuitive user interface, frame-by-frame animation, and unique tools like onion skinning. In fact, animators of all skill levels use Stick Nodes for both professional and personal projects.

Price: $3.99

LottieFiles

LottieFiles is a website that offers developers and animators a library of free, high-quality animation files. Its purpose? To make it easy to create beautiful animations that work on any platform. It’s also suitable for a wide range of applications, from web and app design to motion graphics.

The software’s key features are the ability to upload, share, and preview animations. It also allows users to download and export animations in various formats such as GIF, MP4, and JSON.

Price: Free

Powtoon

Powtoon is an online platform that makes it easy to create animated videos. It offers a wide variety of templates, graphics, and soundtracks that can be used to create engaging videos in minutes. It’s used by businesses, marketers, educators, and professionals for a variety of purposes.

The software’s key features include its intuitive user interface, which helps users create videos – even without prior experience. Powtoon’s videos are also easy to share and can be embedded in websites, making them a great tool for marketing and promotion.

Price: $15-$125/month (depending on the plan)

Stykz

Stykz is an animation program that allows users to quickly create stick-figure animations. It’s free to download and available for both Mac and Windows. Plus, it’s easy to use, making it a great tool for both professional animators and beginners.

The software’s key features are its powerful animation tools and a wide range of effects. It also supports multiple file formats, allowing users to export their work in a variety of ways.

Price: Free

Moho Animation Software

Moho Animation Software is an easy-to-use program that allows users to create professional-quality animations. It features an intuitive user interface and powerful tools for creating 2D animation. 

Moho Animation Software is suitable for beginners and professionals alike, with a range of tutorials and resources to help users get started. It also supports export to multiple formats, so users can easily share their animations with others.

The software’s key features are intuitive controls, powerful rigging tools, and a range of 2D features, allowing users to create animations in any style they want. It also has a customizable interface, making it easy to tailor the software to fit individual needs.

Price: $59.99-$399.99 (depending on the package)

Visme Unity

Visme Unity is a cloud-based platform that provides powerful tools for creating interactive content. It enables users to create unique experiences with visuals, audio, video, and animation. The platform also offers analytics and insights to help measure the success of content.

The software’s key features are its drag-and-drop editor, a library of customizable templates, and a comprehensive suite of tools for creating presentations, infographics, and other visual content. Visme Unity also boasts an intuitive user interface that makes the process of creating visuals a breeze.

Price: $0-$24.75 (depending on the plan)

PixTeller

PixTeller is an online design platform that enables users to create high-quality visuals in minutes. So, it offers a wide range of templates, fonts, and images that can be customized to fit any need, making it a great tool for creating engaging visuals.

The software’s key features are its easy-to-use design tools, AI-powered recommendations, and a library of templates to help users create beautiful designs quickly. It’s also incredibly affordable, making it an ideal choice for individuals.

Price: $7-$12/month (depending on the plan)

PosterMyWall

PosterMyWall is a website that offers customizable templates for posters, flyers, and other marketing materials. It’s a user-friendly platform that allows users to create professional-looking designs with ease. It also provides a wide range of features, such as custom fonts, images, and colors, to help users create unique designs.

The software’s key features are its simple user interface, drag-and-drop design capabilities, and library of templates.

Price: $9.95/month

Biteable

Biteable is an online video maker that enables users to create high-quality videos. It offers a wide range of templates and features to customize videos and an extensive library of stock footage, animations, and music clips. Biteable is perfect for creating videos to showcase products, promote services, or share stories.

The software’s key features are easy editing with drag and drop, access to millions of images and videos, and the ability to create professional-looking videos in any language. 

Price: $49-$99/month

Animatron Studio

Animatron Studio is an online editing platform for creating and animating videos and graphics. It enables users to create animations and interactive videos with a drag-and-drop interface, and it also offers a suite of tools for sharing and publishing content across multiple channels.

The software’s key features are easy-to-use interfaces, a library of royalty-free assets, and integration with other services. Also, Animatron Studio is available on both desktop and mobile devices.

Price: $0-$30/month (depending on the plan)

Clip Studio Paint

Clip Studio Paint is an illustration and comic creation software developed by the Japanese software company Celsys. It’s mainly used for creating original art, storyboards, comics, and animations, and it’s available for Windows, macOS, and iPad. 

The software’s key features are its powerful drawing tools, customizable brushes, and support for a range of file formats. It also offers features such as automatic layer management, perspective rulers, and 2D materials.

Price: One-time purchase from $49.99 or monthly usage plans from $0.99/month

Okay, now let’s take a look at 3D animation apps to know about.

What are the top 3D animation apps?

What animation software is best for 3D animation? Here’s an overview.

Autodesk Maya

Autodesk Maya is a powerful 3D animation and modeling software for professional animators and game developers. It’s used to create high-quality 3D images, animations, and special effects, and it also offers tools for creating simulated 3D environments.

The software’s key features are the ability to create complex 3D models, realistic shading, and advanced rendering capabilities. Unsurprisingly, Maya is used in many industries, including film, television, and gaming.

Here’s our list of The 15 Best Maya Courses in 2023. We also discuss how to choose a Maya course in this recent blog post, and we sourced 11 of the Best Plugins to Complement Autodesk Maya and our favorite Maya Lighting and Rendering Tricks for you to check out.

Price: $235/month 

Cinema 4D

Cinema 4D is a powerful 3D modeling, animation, and rendering software for 3D graphics and visual effects. It’s used in many industries ranging from film and television to architecture and product design.

Cinema 4D is a 3D modeling, animation, and rendering software package. It’s widely used in the motion graphics, VFX, and gaming industries, and it’s known for its intuitive user interface and powerful tools. Designers and architects use Cinema 4D to quickly create 3D models and generate realistic visualizations, but hobbyists and students also use it for their projects.

The software’s key features are its motion graphics capabilities, its ability to easily create 3D objects and scenes, and its ability to render high-quality images.

Price: $94/month or $719/year

Blender

Blender is a 3D animation software that’s used to create 3D models, animations, and simulations. It can be used for a variety of tasks, from creating 3D models for video games to adding visual effects to movies. It’s a powerful, versatile tool.

The software’s key features are its robust toolset, variety of render engines, and intuitive user interface. Blender is free and open-source software, so anyone can use it. Plus, it’s also regularly updated with new features and tools.

Price: Free

Toontastic

Toontastic is an app that allows users to create their own cartoons. It has a variety of features like animation tools, sound effects, and 3D characters. It’s easy to use and a great way to exercise creativity while having fun. 

The software’s key features are simple drag-and-drop controls and intuitive design. Toontastic also allows users to share their creations with friends and family.

Price: Free

Renderforest

Renderforest is an online video and animation maker platform. It allows users to create professional-looking videos and animations, even with no prior experience. Plus, it also provides a library of templates and customizable elements to help users create stunning projects.

The software’s key features are easy to use, cost-effective, and offer high-quality output. Renderforest also offers a variety of customization options, allowing users to tailor projects to their needs. Also, the platform provides access to a community of content creators and experts to help users get the most out of the software.

Price: $9.99/month

KeyShot

KeyShot is an advanced 3D rendering and animation software for designers and 3D artists. It enables them to easily create stunning visuals from 3D models. KeyShot also features an intuitive user interface, allowing users to create professional-looking visuals.

The software’s key features are its real-time rendering capabilities and its ability to quickly render large, complex scenes. KeyShot also integrates with many popular 3D modeling applications, making it an ideal choice for professional 3D designers.

Price: $32/month

Want to learn more about animation software?

We’ve compiled a list of The 23 Best 3D Animation Software for Beginners in 2023, 9 Animation Software Programs to Download for Free, and the Best Options for Free Graphic Design and Animation Software

You can also check out our blog post on the Best Software for 3D Animation and Compositing.

Next, let’s take a look at some great stop motion animation apps to explore.

What are the top stop motion animation apps?

Stop Motion Studio

Stop Motion Studio is a video editing software that allows users to create animated videos using photos or videos. It’s a great tool for making short films, commercials, and other creative projects. Why? Because it’s easy to use and features a wide range of tools for editing, animating, and exporting videos.

The software’s key features are its animation tools, which allow users to create smooth, realistic movements with their videos. It also includes a library of sound and music effects to enhance the videos, as well as a range of filters to help refine the user’s videos.

Price: $6.99

 

PowerDirector

PowerDirector is a video editing software that allows users to create professional-looking videos with ease. It offers features such as multicam editing, motion tracking, and AI-powered tools to enhance video quality, making it a great choice for both novice and experienced video editors. 

The software’s key features include cutting-edge tools such as Chroma Key, Mask Creator, and Audio Enhancer. It also supports a wide range of formats, including 4K and 360-degree video. Plus, with its intuitive user interface, the software offers a smooth video editing experience.

Price: $48.99-$149.99/month (depending on the plan)

Clayframes – Stop Motion

Clayframes is a stop motion animation tool that allows users to create unique animations using clay and other materials. It’s an intuitive, easy-to-use software that’s suitable for beginners and experienced animators alike. 

The software’s key features are a wide range of tools for animating, editing, and rendering animations and a user-friendly interface. It also has a library of pre-made animations which can be easily customized to create stunning animations. 

Price: $2.99

iMotion

iMotion is a motion-sensing technology that can control devices and applications with just the movement of your body. So, it uses advanced algorithms to detect and interpret body movements and convert them into commands. It’s an intuitive, user-friendly way to interact with technology.

The software’s key features are accuracy, responsiveness, and ease of use. It can be used for gaming, home security, and virtual reality applications, and it’s quickly becoming an integral part of the digital world.

Price: $69

Life Lapse Stop Motion Maker

Life Lapse Stop Motion Maker is a mobile application that allows users to easily create stop motion animations from their photos. The app offers an intuitive user interface, a wide range of editing tools, and the ability to share creations with friends and family.

The software’s key features are its simple, straightforward design, its powerful editing capabilities, and its ability to quickly create high-quality animations.

Price: Free download

PicPac Stop Motion and TimeLapse

PicPac Stop Motion and TimeLapse is a mobile application that allows users to create stop motion and time-lapse videos. It’s easy to use and provides the tools necessary to create videos that can capture memories and tell stories.

The software’s key features are automatic image capture, video editing, and sharing capabilities. It also has an intuitive user interface, making it an excellent tool for beginners.

Price: Free version with in-app purchases available

I Can Animate

I Can Animate is an animation software for creating high-quality animations. It features tools for character animation, lip-syncing, and background design, allowing users to make professional-quality animations with minimal effort.

The software’s key features also include automatic rigging and keyframe animation, as well as a library of premade assets to get up and running quickly.

Price: $2.99

Stop Motion Maker

Stop Motion Maker is a free online tool that allows users to create stop-motion animations. It features an easy-to-use interface and is perfect for creating fun, creative animations. Stop Motion Maker is suitable for beginners and experienced animators alike. Plus, with its library of sound effects and music, it’s a great way to bring any project to life.

The software’s key features also include editing tools for perfecting animations, an array of special effects, the ability to share projects with others, and an intuitive user experience.

Price: Free

iStopMotion

iStopMotion is a powerful stop motion animation software for Mac and iPad. It helps creators bring their stories to life with its intuitive user interface and powerful editing tools. It’s also easy to use and allows users to capture, edit, and even share their animations.

The software’s key features include frame-by-frame animation and onion skinning, which means users can see a live composite of their previous and current frames. It also offers audio and video recording, 3D and camera tracking, and the ability to export animations in multiple formats.

Price: $9.99

Frameographer

Frameographer is software that enables users to create high-quality videos from still images. It offers a range of video editing tools, such as time-lapse, stop motion, and animation. Frameographer is easy to use, so it’s suitable for both beginners and professionals.

The software’s key features include cropping, resizing, and adding transitions to videos. Frameographer also supports a variety of image and audio formats, allowing users to easily create video projects. It’s available for both Mac and PC.

Price: $4.99

Now let’s take a look at motion graphics apps to check out.

What are the top motion graphics animation apps?

SideFX Houdini

SideFX Houdini is a 3D animation and visual effects software used in the film, television, and gaming industries. It’s known for its powerful procedural workflow, allowing users to quickly create complex animations and effects. Houdini is also popular for its robust toolset and powerful node-based workflow.

The software’s key features include a 3D environment with tools for modeling, animation, materials, lighting, rendering, and compositing. Houdini is also known for its powerful and flexible scripting capabilities, giving users the ability to create custom tools and effects.

Check out this article for tips and tricks to speed up your workflow in Houdini.

Price: Varies depending on the plan. Free version available for non-commercial projects

Adobe Creative Cloud Express

Adobe Creative Cloud Express is a suite of creative tools and services for graphic designers, photographers, video editors, and other creatives. It includes access to Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, Premiere Pro, and other apps at a discounted price. It also includes cloud storage and other features to help creatives collaborate and share their work.

The software’s key features are designed to make it easier for teams to work together and bring their ideas to life. Adobe Creative Cloud is a powerful tool for creatives, and the subscription model makes it more accessible to a wider range of users.

Price: $0-$9.99/month (depending on the plan)

Adobe After Effects

Adobe After Effects is an animation and creative compositing application used to create motion graphics and visual effects for video, film, and television projects – in addition to keying, tracking, compositing, and animation.

The software’s key features are 3D modeling, text animation, motion tracking, and rotoscoping. It also includes various tools for color correction, keying, and particle generation.

Here’s our list of 10 After Effects Animation Tools To Speed Up Your Workflow.

Price: Starting at $20.99/month

Animaker

Animaker is a web-based video animation platform that allows users to create animated videos quickly and easily – with no prior experience. It offers a library of customizable templates, but users can also make their own projects from scratch. Animaker also provides a range of features and tools to put together professional-looking videos.

The software’s key features include the ability to add text, music, transitions, and motion graphics. Animaker also offers a range of sharing options so users can easily upload their videos to social media platforms.

Price: Starting at $12.50/month

Textro

Textro is an animation-based storytelling tool that enables users to create unique, engaging animated stories. It simplifies the process by combining art, audio, and text into one platform. So, Textro is a great tool for anyone who wants to express their creative ideas in a visually appealing way.

The software’s key features are easy to learn and use, and it supports a variety of animations to create professional-looking videos. Textro also offers a library of pre-made characters, backgrounds, and sound effects.

Price: $0.99-$3.99 for in-app purchases

Animoto

Animoto is an animation tool that allows users to create slideshows, videos, and GIFs from photos, videos, and music. It’s easy to use, with drag-and-drop editing and a library of customizable templates. Animoto is available on desktop, iOS, and Android devices, and it’s a great way to create engaging content with minimal effort.

The software’s key features are its automated storyboard creator, which helps users create professional-looking videos in minutes, and its music library, which contains thousands of royalty-free tracks.

Price: $0-$69/month (billed monthly)

Muvimi

Muvimi is an animation app that allows users to create short animations with ease. It offers a drag-and-drop interface and a library of characters, backgrounds, and music. With Muvimi, users can create and share their own animations with the world.

The software’s key features are its intuitive interface, diverse content library, and collaboration tools. Muvimi is available as a free download, with additional features available for premium users.

Price: Free (with in-app purchases)

PicsArt

PicsArt is an animation and photo editing app available for both iOS and Android. It offers a selection of tools for both professionals and beginners to create stunning visuals. Plus, it also allows users to share their creations with friends and followers.

The software’s key features are its wide range of filters, effects, and tools. It also provides a library of free stock images, templates to help users get started, and a vibrant community of content creators who share their work and provide inspiration for others.

Price: $0-$4/month (depending on the plan)

Alight Motion

Alight Motion is a mobile video editing app that enables users to create motion graphics and visual effects. The app features a wide range of tools and effects for users to customize their videos, making it easy to create professional-looking content.

The software’s key features include an intuitive user interface, real-time previews, and an easy-to-use timeline editor. Alight Motion also allows users to export their videos in different formats and resolutions for sharing on various social media platforms.

Price: $0.49-$79.99 for in-app purchases

Over to you!

So, there you have it! These are the best animation apps to use for your animation projects. 

Finding the right animation software or app is an important step in creating your animation, so do your research and choose a software that fits your needs. Reading reviews and comparing features can ultimately help you make the right decision.

Learn more:

The Best Rendering Software for CG Lighting

The Top Lighting Software Tools

 

 

Jasmine Katatikarn Headshot

About Jasmine Katatikarn

Jasmine Katatikarn is the founder of Academy of Animated Art. She has 20+ years of experience in Feature Animation and VFX. Jasmine’s lighting credits include movies like Ice Age, Ferdinand, Peanuts, and Rio. Read more here.

Jasmine Katatikarn Headshot

About Jasmine Katatikarn

Jasmine Katatikarn is the founder of Academy of Animated Art. She has 20+ years of experience in Feature Animation and VFX. Jasmine’s lighting credits include movies like Ice Age, Ferdinand, Peanuts, and Rio. Read more here.

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