How to compress a video on iPhone, Mac, Android or PC for email and posts

Explains steps for how to compress a video on iPhone, Mac, Android or PC for email and sharing, using inbuilt or free tools as the first options.

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Have you ever tried to send a video, but the maximum file size has been exceeded? Or are video files taking up too much space on your computer that you actually need for other files? Numerous tools and programs offer the right solution and the option to compress videos without noticeably reducing the quality. We will give you an overview of all the options for how to compress the size of a video.

Why reduce the size of videos?

The local data storage of computers is so large that most users can get along with it without any problems. However, compared to documents or pictures, videos take up a lot of storage space . A hard drive can fill up quickly even if there is actually plenty of space available. However, it is not necessary to forego video files and even delete them. Numerous tools make it possible to easily step though how to compress video files and thus significantly reduce the file size.

Before sending or uploading video files, it is also worth making them smaller. This means that uploads are completed faster and you no longer exceed the maximum permitted file size when sending e-mails. tip

Thanks to high-resolution smartphone cameras, numerous videos of good quality are also created in the private sector. Would you also like to get into video production? There are various video editing programs for cutting and editing your recordings, which are also suitable for beginners.

What are the options for how to compress a video?

There are basically 4 options available to you to reduce the size of a video file:

  1. Change settings to reduce file size before you start videoing.
  2. Installed tools: use available tools or post-filming settings.
  3. Online tools: Start compressing videos immediately and without prior installation. 
  4. Software for download: With free and paid software, you can compress videos even without an internet connection.

In the following, we present some online tools and programs as examples and use them to explain step by step how to reduce the size of your videos.

How to compress video with online tools

The easiest and fastest way to make a video to compress, online tools offer. The prerequisite for this is an existing internet connection, there is no need to install a program .

We will show you how to reduce the size of your videos online using the example of the free tools Clideo and Wondershare.

Clideo: compress videos online with little quality loss

The online tool Clideo automatically selects the appropriate parameters when compressing your video in order to keep the loss of quality to a minimum. To compress your video, go to Clideo’s website and follow these steps:

  1. Click on the “Select file” button. Then select the video via the file path and confirm your selection by clicking on “Open” or drag and drop the video into the appropriate area.
  2. The upload starts automatically. Clideo shows you the progress of the process.
  3. As soon as the upload is complete, the tool will automatically start compressing .
  4. Save the video locally or select Dropbox or Google Drive as the storage location.
✔ Modern user interface✘ Original file limited to 500 MB
✔ Secure encryption✘ Final video file contains subtle watermark
✔ Preview video before download 

Wondershare: shrink videos online without watermark

The Wondershare company offers a wide variety of products in the multimedia sector. This includes a free video compressor that can be used to compress popular video formats online. A clear advantage over other free online tools: This video compressor does not add a watermark to the final video file . Here’s how to compress your video using the Wondershare tool:

  1. Drag and drop the video file into the appropriate area or open the video using the file path .
  2. Then you define various output settings , such as the desired resolution or format. Click on the “Compress” button to start the process.
  3. Once the process is complete, save the compressed video file to your local storage or directly to your Dropbox.
✔ Also available as a download version✘ No connection to Google Drive
✔ Individual output settings 
✔ No watermark 

Compress videos with these free programs

Although WLAN connections are increasingly available nationwide, there is not always an active Internet connection. If you regularly compress videos and also use this function on the go, we recommend installing the appropriate software. We present three practical programs with which you can reduce the data size of videos at any time, even without an Internet connection.

VLC player: Compress all file formats

The VideoLAN VLC player is a popular media player software that supports a particularly large number of file formats , including less common ones. However, a practical function is unknown to many users. Videos can also be reduced in size with the VLC player and this is an excellent method for how to compress an mp4 video. To reduce the file size of a video, follow these steps:

  1. Select the “Media” tab and then the “Convert / Save” option .
  2. Click on the “Add” button and select the relevant video.
  3. Confirm your selection with “Convert / Save” .
  4. If desired, define further settings for the export. This step can also be skipped.
  5. Specify the storage location for the compressed video file.
  6. Click “Start” and wait for the VLC player to finish compressing.
✔ Versatile tool✘ No management of media
✔ Supports many file formats✘ Outdated user interface
✔ Good playback quality 
✔ Compatible with all operating systems 
✔ Optional settings for compression 

This step-by-step video explains how to compress a video with VLC player :

Another click loads the video from YouTube. In this case, YouTube can set cookies over which we have no influence.

Freemake Video Converter

Use the Freemake Video Converter to reduce the size of videos and determine the exact size of the target file yourself . The disadvantage of the free version: All edited videos contain an annoying watermark . To compress a video, do the following:

  1. Left-click on the “Video” button and select the corresponding video file .
  2. Select the format you want .
  3. A window will then open in which you can specify the new resolution of the video . The smaller this is, the smaller the file size.
  4. Click on the “Convert” button and start the compression.

 tip: Only reduce the resolution of the video as much as necessary to maintain the video quality as much as possible .

✔ Supports many formats✘ Videos contain watermarks
✔ Freely selectable file size✘ Only suitable for Windows

Handbrake: How to compress a video on Mac OS and Windows

how to compress a video

Advanced users can also use the free Handbrake tool. Here you have significantly more options for compressing the videos.

  1. Click on the “Open source” button at the top left and select the “File” option.
  2. Next to “Destination” click on the “Browse” button and select the new storage location.
  3. On the right you will find a list with numerous presets that are optimized for a wide variety of purposes.
  4. Alternatively, you can configure all available parameters yourself via the “Video” tab below.
  5. The video is compressed using the “Start Encode” button.

Compress videos with Windows Movie Maker

  1. Install the “Windows Movie Maker” . (This is not available for macOS).
  2. Start “Windows Movie Maker” and drag your video file with the mouse into the program window.
  3. Click on the menu button in the top left or on “File” > ” Save movie “> ” For computer “.
  4. The video will now be saved again, compressed and reduced in size.

How to compress a video on iPhone or iPad

The iPhone and iPad can record amazingly high-definition video in 4K, 1080p, and 720p resolutions, and while these movies look fantastic, they also create large file sizes. While you can always change the recording resolution of videos in iOS in advance, another option is to compress the video afterwards and thereby drastically reduce the file size. Knowing how to compress iPhone video is especially useful when you want to share a video from an iPhone or iPad. However, the size of the movie file is too large for a standard file transfer, message, or e-mail.

How to compress video in iOS settings

To compress iPhone videos and reduce their size, you can change the original resolution . This allows you to make less heavy films without further intervention. You can do everything in the iOS settings .

To change the native resolution of the video on your iPhone , open System Preferences , click Camera, and choose Record Video. Here you can choose whether you want to record at full resolution (which of course depends on the model of Melophone you have) or whether you want to reduce the storage space . It is up to you to choose the best video resolution for each case: if it is a movie that is important to you in a certain way, it is advisable to leave the resolution unchanged. However, if it’s a video for social media or for a messaging platform, the video quality changes too.

If you want to set a smaller video file size first, you can switch from 4K video recording to 1080p or 720p ahead of time, or change the frame rate at 60 fps or 30 fps, which will reduce the file size of a movie recording, but obviously that doesn’t help, to change the compression or video quality of an already recorded video. 

How to compress video on iPhone and iPad with Telegram app

It might sound strange, but the Anti-WhatsApp messaging app Telegram is one of the most powerful and easy-to-use free video editors on the App Store. 

  1. To compress iPhone videos with Telegram, first open the app, enter one of the conversations and import the video to be optimized.
  2. Then click on the rectangle icon with the number 480 in the middle and choose the resolution of the movie
  3. Telegram will show you the approximate dimensions that the film will take up in your storage and also allow you to trim it
  4. Once the change is done, send it to your contact and wait a moment. Press the video again and select Save to Roll so that it is also available locally.

How to compress video on iPhone and iPad with free Video Compressor app

This is how to compress video on iPhone or iPad to reduce the file size or decrease the quality of the video definition. However, compressing videos isn’t a feature that is natively built into iOS. Hence, we’re going to be relying on a free third-party app that does this job quite well. There are others in the App store you can try as well.

  1. Grab Video Compressor for iOS on the App Store, it’s free and works on iPhone and iPad
  2. Launch the Video Compressor app on the iPhone or iPad after downloading it
  3. Tap the video you want to compress and reduce the file size for
  4. On the video preview screen, choose Select to open the video in Video Compressor
  5. Use the slider at the bottom of the screen to adjust the video compression based on the target file size of the compressed video. The further the slider moves to the left, the greater the compression and the smaller the resulting file size of the video
  6. When you are happy with the compression and target file size of the video, select “Save” in the upper right corner
  7. Video Compressor will work on the target movie file, it may take a while depending on the size of the video selected on the iPad or iPhone
  8. The compressed video will be saved in your iOS Camera Roll once it’s done

Compress, create, and edit with paid tools

If you do not only want to reduce the size of videos, but also create and edit them yourself , it is worth investing in a paid program. We introduce you to two popular video editing and video editing programs that also allow you to compress existing videos.

MAGIX Video Deluxe: Professional video editing for beginners

The video editing software MAGIX Video Deluxe adapts the user interface and functions to your experience . Therefore, the professional tool is also suitable for beginners. The cheapest package costs around 70 euros and includes u. a. 900 effects, template and transitions. We explain how you can use it to compress a video:

  1. Import the video file .
  2. Follow the menu path “File”> “ Export movie”> “Video as MPEG-4” or “Video as HEVC”. In either case, the software will export your video in MP4 format.
  3. Select a suitable preset in the export dialog or set the resolution and frame rate manually .
✔ Clear interface✘ Many features are only available in more expensive versions
✔ Comparatively cheap 
Filmora: Compress Videos with the Free Trial

The professional video editing and video editing program Filmora is also suitable for beginners. The trial version includes all the features of the program but adds a watermark to the videos. Still, the free trial version offers a practical solution to shrink videos. We explain how to do it:

  1. Import the video or drag and drop the file into the program.
  2. If desired, you can edit the video or adjust the length to make the video file smaller.
  3. If you have completed this step or would like to skip it, click on the “Create” button . Then select the triangle button to open the setting options.
  4. Reduce the resolution, frame rate, and other parameters to minimize file size .
✔ Switch between beginner and professional mode✘ Watermark in the free version
✔ Comparatively cheap 

How to compress a video for email

It is difficult to get video files down to a size that can be emailed. Zipping other types of files works well, but music, video and image files are already compressed, and hence zipping them does not reduce their file size sufficiently.

Your best options for how to compress a video for email are to:

  1. Adjust the settings or use one of the methods listed above
  2. Email it using a filesharing service. Many of these allow free emailing for files up to a certain size. For example, Hightail (formerly called YouSendIt) allows each emailed file to be up to 100MB for free.
  3. Use a heavy compressor such as ClipChamp.