The recording and editing of sound has long been in the domain of the PC, but doing the same with moving video has only recently gained acceptance as a mainstream PC application. In the past, digital video work was limited to a small group of specialist users, such as multimedia developers and professional video editors, who were prepared to pay for expensive and complex digital video systems. It was not until 1997, after several years of intense technological development, that the home PC was up to the job.
As the potential market has increased, prices have fallen, and in so doing opened up digital video editing to an entirely new audience. Business users can now afford to use video in their presentations, while home users can store and edit holiday videos on their hard disks, or even send them across the Internet. The widespread availability of camcorders means that more people have access to video recording equipment, and this has further boosted the market for consumer-level systems. It has also helped that many video editing software packages have become affordable or, in some cases, even free.