Video and audio playback FAQs

Updated Nov 16, 2023
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This article answers frequently asked questions about playing video and audio files you’ve saved to your Dropbox account. For questions about Dropbox Capture, learn how to take screenshots with Dropbox Capture.

Why won’t my file play?

If a video or audio file won’t play on or the Dropbox mobile app, it may be in a file format that Dropbox can’t preview. Learn about supported file types that can preview in Dropbox.

Why can’t I play a whole video or audio file?

If you don’t own a file, how much of it you can stream on or on the mobile app depends on what type of account the file owner has.

  • If the owner is a Dropbox Basic user, you can stream the first 30 minutes.
  • If the owner is a Dropbox Plus, Family, or Professional customer, you can stream the first two hours.
  • If the owner is a Dropbox Standard, Advanced, or Enterprise customer, you can stream the first four hours.

Learn more about Dropbox plans.

To play a whole video or audio file that you don’t own, click or tap Save to Dropbox at the top of the file preview to save to your Dropbox account.

How can I get better playback quality?

When you watch a video, Dropbox adjusts the resolution based on your viewing environment. Factors that can influence playback quality include:

  • Your internet speed
  • The upload resolution of the original video
  • Screen size
    • High-resolution videos play back more clearly on larger screens

How can I preview a high-resolution video on Dropbox?

When you preview a video, the resolution you see depends on the Dropbox plan of the owner.

  • Basic users can preview videos up to 1080p (HD).
  • Paid customers can preview videos up to 2160p (4K), including 144p, 240p, 360p, 480p, 720p, 1080p (HD), and 1440p (2K).

You can view the resolution of the videos you upload in the Details panel.

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