Top 10 Ways to Fix Google Photos Not Playing Videos

Google Photos is the default gallery app on most Android phones. Besides viewing photos, it is more than a simple photo-viewing app with a host of image editing features, a locked folder to hide private photos, media organization, and a built-in player to stream videos on the go. However, many users complain about Google Photos not playing videos on their phones.


There are a number of reasons why Google Photos does not play videos, like a corrupt video file, unsupported file extension, incomplete download, and more. You usually won’t need a third-party video player just to watch a video. This post compiles the best fixes for Google Photos not playing videos.

1. Check For Supporting Video File Type

If you receive a slow-motion or hyperlapse video from an iPhone, your Android phone may fail to play such videos properly. That might happen the otherway around as well. So its important to check the format of the video file first.

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While Google Photos app supports popular video extensions like MP4, AVI, MKV, and more. However, you may run into errors when playing WMV, MOV, WebM, Theora, and other video files. So, to play those files, you’ll need to the videos to a supporting video format in Google Photos.

2. Download the Full Video

Are you trying to play a video that’s being downloaded in the Google Photos app? You’ll need to complete the download process before streaming it from the gallery app. You can’t play such incomplete videos in Google Photos while its download process is in progress.

3. Check Network Connection

Google Photos shows all the videos and photos you downloaded or captured on your phone. If you have uploaded videos from another phone or desktop, the file shows up on all your devices – provided you’re using the same Google account and have enabled the sync.

So if the video is on another devices and not synced to your phone, then you’ll need to use a high-speed internet to sync and stream it. Otherwise, you will run into a continuous loading/buffering indicator while playing a video.

4. Corrupt Video

Did you receive a corrupt video over WhatsApp, email, or other third-party app? No matter how hard you try, you can’t play such videos on your phone. Either get a fresh copy of the video or ask the sender to share it again.

5. Overheating

After a long video recording or gaming session, your phone’s temperature may go abnormally high. In such a situation, you face shutters and lag with basic tasks like playing a video in Google Photos. You need to wait for some time, let the phone temperatures go down and try again after some time.

6. Use a Third-Party Video Player

Do you frequently receive video files in unusual extensions? If the Google Photos doesn’t support the video files, then you may have to get a third-party video player. Google Play Store offers dozens of video players and our best bet would be the VLC Player. It’s an open-source software and remains free to download and can play almost any video file. Let’s check it out.

Step 1: Download VLC Player from the Google Play Store.

Step 2: Launch VLC Player and give it the required permission to read stored videos on your phone.

Step 3: VLC shows all your videos under the Video tab. If the app doesn’t show a newly added video, tap the three-dot menu in the top-right corner and select Refresh.

The default video player on VLC is packed with useful features and gestures. You can tweak brightness levels, change playback speeds, enable subtitles, and make other tweaks from VLC settings. We highly recommend digging into the VLC settings to get the best out of it.

7. Remove and Add microSD Card

Are you trying to play a video from a microSD card on Google Photos? If you continue to run into errors, remove the microSD card from your phone and insert it after some time.

8. Force Stop Google Photos App

Force-stopping Google Photos is another handy trick to fix common app glitches. Here’s what you need to do.

Step 1: Long-press on the Google Photos app icon and open the info menu.

Step 2: Tap Force stop.

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9. Clear Google Photos Cache

You can clear the corrupt Google Photos cache and try playing high-resolution videos without any glitches.

Step 1: Long-press on the Google Photos app icon and choose App info option.

Step 2: From the App Info menu, tap Storage and cache. Select Clear cache.

10. Update Google Photos

An outdated Google Photos app may fail to play videos. You need to update Google Photos to the latest version from the Play Store.

Stream Videos on the Go

Although Google Photos is feature-rich, it can be surprising when a video doesn’t play in it. You may try out the methods mentioned above to get Google Photos to play videos on your phone again. Or you may get one of the third-party video player apps for the task. Which trick worked for you? Share your findings in the comments below.

Last updated on 28 November, 2023

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