Fix: Google Photos not backing up videos

Google Photos cover everything your camera takes. Both photos and videos are automatically backed up to cloud storage, so you can preserve your storage space while being able to access them everywhere. However, there seems to be an issue that comes and goes for a few years. Namely, Google Photos is not backing up videos for some users.

We made sure to shed some light on this issue and help you resolve it as soon as possible. If you have issues uploading videos to Google Photos, make sure to check the steps below.

Table of contents:

  1. Make sure the backup is enabled and check the network
  2. Confirm that you have enough space in Google Drive
  3. Clear Google Photos cache
  4. Try backing up videos on a PC

Why are my videos not backing up to Google Photos?

There are multiple reasons for this. Confirm that you are connected to a stable Wi-Fi network or tweak settings to allow video backups over mobile data. If that doesn’t help, make sure that the video file format is supported. In regards to video files, Google Photos support: .mpg, .mod, .mmv, .tod, .wmv, .asf, .avi, .divx, .mov, .m4v, .3gp, .3g2, .mp4, .m2t, .m2ts, .mts, and .mkv files.

If that doesn’t mean much, check the backup folder or try manually uploading video files. Finally, you can clear local data from Google Photos on Android or use Google Photos for Web to upload videos.

Solution 1 – Make sure the backup is enabled and check the network

Firstly, try taking a photo and confirm it’s successfully backed up to Google Photos. If that’s the case, double-check the Backup folders and confirm that videos are set to back up.

Here’s what you need to do:

  1. Open the Google Photos app.
  2. Tap on your profile and choose Photos settings.
  3. Open Back up & sync.
  4. Select Back up device folders.
  5. Confirm that the backup for the folder containing videos is actually enabled.
  6. Open Library and find the video in device folders. Tap on it and then on the cloud icon to back it up manually.

If, on the other hand, you’re not able to back up both photos and videos, we suggest investigating global Backup settings. Navigate to Settings > Advanced settings > Back up & reset. Disable Backup and re-enable it to deal with the possible stall.

In addition, confirm that the current network connection is working properly. If you use Mobile Data for uploading, navigate to Google Photos > Settings > Back up & sync and allow the app to upload files on Mobile Data. Restart your device and continue with the steps below.

In case you notice any issues with your Wi-Fi connection, check out this article for potential solutions.

Solution 2 – Confirm that you have enough space in Google Drive

Google Photos service used to offer unlimited photo storage with only videos going against your quota. That changed relatively recently and now every photo and video you upload occupy Google Drive storage space.

The “High Quality” option only compresses files to save some space since Google discontinued the unlimited storage. The free 15 GB of storage space is suddenly not that much, considering that 4K videos without compression (Original) will fill it up in no time.

With that in mind, make sure that you have enough free storage space in Google Drive assigned to your Google account. Also, even though it’s needless to say, make sure that the video at hand isn’t larger than 10 GB.

You can make some space by deleting large files from Google Drive but firstly back them up to your PC. Or you can opt-in for Google One premium subscription and get 100 GB for $2 per month.

Solution 3 – Clear Google Photos cache

Even though the Google Photos app is rather consistent, there are some bugs here and there. Every new iteration comes with improvements, but it can bring up certain issues, as well. Also, due to piling up of the cached data, the app can start misbehaving.

Those should be good enough reasons to navigate to Apps and clear the data from Google Photos. Here’s how to do it in a few simple steps:

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Tap Apps (Apps Manager on some devices).
  3. Open Photos.
  4. Tap Storage.
  5. Open Manage storage.
  6. Tap Delete.
  7. Restart your device and open the Google Photos app.
  8. Sign in with your account and navigate to Settings.
  9. Select folders you want to back up and try backing up videos again in Google Photos again.

You can also try resetting Google Photos to the factory version and try uploading the video in that state. Just navigate to Settings > Apps > Google Photos > 3-dots menu > Uninstall updates.

Solution 4 – Try backing up videos on a PC

Finally, if you’re unable to upload a certain video (or videos) in Google Photos, we suggest giving Google Photos for Web a try. Just transfer the video from your handset to a PC first. After you’ve done that, follow these instructions:

  1. Open a web browser on your PC.
  2. Go to Google Photos, here.
  3. Sign in with your Google Account.
  4. Drag & drop video files from desktop to in-browser Google Photos.
  5. Wait until the upload ends.

If you don’t have access to a PC, you can enable the Desktop mode in Chrome for Android and open Google Photos for Web on your phone. Select the files and upload them that way. If Google Photos are still not backing up videos, make sure to report the problem to Google Support, here.

With that, we can conclude this article. If had the same or similar problem and dealt with it in a different manner, we encourage you to share it with us in the comments section below.

Note: This article is a part of our Google Photos coverage. If you want to learn more Google Photos tips and tricks, or you have a certain problem with this app, visit our Google Photos Hub for more content.

Editor’s note: This article was originally published in July 2018. We made sure to revamp it for freshness and accuracy.

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Oded
Oded
November 1, 2020 11:38 pm

What solved my problem was turning off battery optimization in settings. While on, the battery saving option force-stopped photos app mid-backup.