Smartphones are amazing video cameras—the iPhone, Google Pixel, and Galaxy do a great job at capturing 4K, stabilized video, with great detail and color quality. But these videos are massive in size. That’s okay if you want to view the videos on your phone (provided you’re paying for cloud storage), but what if you need to send them to someone over the internet, or back them up without filling an entire hard drive? That’s where video compression comes in.
Using different apps and websites, you’ll can compress a huge video to a comparatively tiny size—and. if you do it right, you won’t lose too much on the quality and resolution front. Here are the best ways to compress video on both iPhone and Android.
How to compress videos on iPhone
You’ll find many iPhone apps that promise to compress videos on the App Store. Video Compress app does so reliably well. The free version is good enough for most users and it isn’t too restrictive with what it will allow before forcing you to cough up for the paid version.
It’s easy to use. Open the app, tap the Plus button and choose the video you want to compress. The app will give you a standard template that you can tweak. By default, the app goes hard, offering to shrink files to a tiny size, but you can change the preset to 1080p resolution and increase the bitrate.
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Even those settings will lead to a 90% reduction in your file size, while still outputting a video in full HD. You can preview the video to make sure it looks OK, and once compressed, it will show up in your Photos app automatically.
How to compress videos on Android
On the Android side, the raft of video compressors available can be confusing. There are apps filled with popup ads and last-minute paid upgrades. In our testing, we found the Panda app to be the happy medium. The ads are not intrusive, the compression is fast and works well, and, most importantly, the interface is actually quite usable.
The app has good presets when it comes to compressing videos for emailing (under 25MB), and customizing them for social media uploads like Facebook.
The app workflow is simple. Give the app access to all media, and choose the videos you want to compress. Tap the “Next” button and choose the compression style. You can choose one of the presets, like Email or Facebook, or if you want to really compress the file, you can choose a custom resolution. Then, tap the “Compress” button, and your result will be saved automatically.
How to compress videos using a website
If the video is on your computer, or if you don’t want to download any apps, you can use a website to convert the video. Clideo is a trusted video conversion site that encrypts your video so that no one can access your private data.
The free plan lets you compress videos of up to 500MB. Click the “Upload File” button, choose the video, and let the website do the rest. Because the compression is happening on the server side, you’ll have to wait a couple of minutes for the resulting file. Once the compression is complete, click the “Download” button.