iPhone Videos Won't Play
How to Fix iPhone 4K HEVC Videos Not Playing on Mac/PC/TV!

iPhone HEVC Videos @4K 60FPS Won't Play? Possible Reasons & Fixes Are Here
By Reuben Zaback Updated: May. 14, 2019

Apple has put a Panasonic-like camera on iPhone X/8 to record 4K videos at 24 fps, 30 fps, and 60 fps in H.265 as well as very nice 1080/240fps for slow-mo only in HEVC. Since then, iPhone users feel the difficulty to play iPhone videos on various other platforms. When watch iPhone recorded videos on the computer, there is only sound no video and the iPhone 4K video freezes in Windows Media Player or VLC. When you stream iPhone videos to a UHD TV via Roku Ultra or Plex, the video is upside down and stutters. Even though Apple has put 4K support inside iPhone, iPad, and Mac, 4K MOV iPhone videos won't play well on Mac QuickTime/Photos app. If the 4K video taken with iPhone won't play on Mac/PC, TVs, Android, other devices, look no further. Here we have gathered all the possible causes and corresponding fixes.

Play iPhone Footages on Mac/PC/TV/Android with No Error
Convert with VideoProc

Why Won't Videos Taken with iPhone Play?

When you can't play iPhone videos on Mac/PC/TV/Android or other devices, it may be the result of various reasons. Below are the major causes and corresponding errors. Find and fix the problem in the section below.


1. iPhone 4k video won't import - HEVC video format from iPhone is not supported

How to Fix "iPhone Videos Won't Play" Error

To fix the problem that iPhone 4K HEVC videos @60fps won't play on Mac QuickTime/Photos, PC Windows Media Player, UHD TV, VLC, or other players, you will need the help of an iPhone video converter. You may read through the post to check the reasons and try to fix the problem by yourself, or follow the guide to solve the error once and for all. For those who need, free download VideoProc:
 Download VideoProc to Windows |  Download VideoProc to Mac

1. Fix Codec Compatibility Issue

"I tried to play a 4K HEVC file from my iPhone X on Windows Media Player, but it freezes immediately. The DivX player also had no luck. The media payer codec pack didn't help." The first reason for iPhone videos not playing on Mac QuickTime/Photos/PC/TV is the HEVC codec. Older players and devices lack the support for HEVC. WMV has no native support for HEVC and VLC 2.1 will support 4K HEVC in up to 60fps, but it doesn't play as smooth it's supposed to be. Macs older than A10 processors and PC older than Intel Kaby Lake can't play iPhone .mov HEVC videos.

If the Windows Media Player, VLC, Divx or Mac QT don't play iPhone HEVC videos, consider download the appropriate codec or update the system. Or you can convert iPhone HEVC to H.264 for its wider compatibility.

Step 1: Run VideoProc and click Video from the main interface. Then click +Video to load the .mov HEVC iPhone video that won't play.
Step 2: From the Target Format bar, select H.264 as the output format.
Step 3: Select an output folder on the right lower part of the interface and then click Run.

iPhone HEVC videos won't play

2. 4K iPhone Video Playback is Choppy

It's particularly CPU-intensive to decode and display high bit rate 4K files. The combination of iPhone 4K resolution and UHD format HEVC .MOV makes it even harder to play iPhone 4K .mov videos smoothly. Generally, newer computer hardware has better support for decoding 4k video. An older less powerful computer will stutter when trying to play the much higher Mbps stream of iPhone 4K recordings. For example, Mac models from mid-2015 or earlier will work with HEVC video, but at no greater than 1080p/240 fps. Or you will see the CPU struggling to play 4K iPhone videos with endless freezes. You will need to downscale iPhone videos from 4K to HD 1080P. 

Step 1: Run VideoProc and click Video from the main interface. Then click +Video to load the iPhone video that won't play.
Step 2: From the Target Format bar, select H.264 as the output format. Then click the Option button on the video info toolbar.
Step 3: Find the Resolution dropdown menu and select a lower resolution. Lowering the resolution to one lever lower won't result in noticeable quality loss.
Step 4: Click Done and go back to the main interface. Then click Run to start processing the iPhone video.

how to play iPhone 4K videos

3. High frame rate

"Videos that come off of my iPhone with 60fps high frame rate playback extremely choppy on my VLC player (64-bit version 2.2.6)." Some resolution and frame rate combinations will result in playback issues with different players. For example, you may at least have 2.4 GHz Core 2 Duo processors and 4GB RAM to play a 1080P video at 30fps. If you want to stream iPhone 4K 60fps on a UHD TV or other player, you must have HDMI 2.0 to enable the playback of 60fps. The playback of 4K 60fps videos uploaded to YouTube also lags and stutters a lot. If you can't play iPhone 60fps videos on PC/Mac, you can record videos at 30fps or convert iPhone 60fps to 30fps (the converting steps are the same with the next part).

4. Variable frame rate

Some users say their iPhone videos are out of sync with the audio. iPhone uses variable frame rate to record videos for better visual details. The VFR normally will cause problems in most editing programs like Premiere Pro which are designed to handle a fixed frame rate. Though most video players will handle variable frame rates, some can't. On some players, the variable frame rate may cause audio to lag behind or go ahead of iPhone video. To fix the audio out of sync with iPhone video, you need to convert iPhone VFR to CFR.

Step 1: Run VideoProc and click Video from the main interface. Then click +Video to load the iPhone video that won't play.
Step 2: From the Target Format bar, select H.264 as the output format. Then click the Option button on the video info toolbar.
Step 3: Find the Frame Rate dropdown menu. If the iPhone video won't play due to the high frame rate, select a lower frame rate like 60fps > 50fps, do not select a frame rate that is too low. If the variable frame rate is the main cause, select the closest frame rate.
Step 4: Click Done and go back to the main interface. Then click Run to start processing the iPhone video.

iPhone VFR videos won't play

5. Improper HW-decoding

When playing iPhone MOV videos on VLC player, sometimes the 4K iPhone MOV video freezes while the audio continues, the player gets rapidly flashing green screen, the static section blanking out, ghosting video playback... VLC player supports GPU decoding for H.264, MPEG-1, MPEG-2, MPEG-4, WMV3, VC-1 on Windows and only H.264 on macOS/Linux. It doesn't support H.265 GPU decoding. 4K iPhone MOV videos won't play smoothly may be the result of VLC forced HW decoding. If VLC hardware decoding is causing problems, you can process the iPhone videos before the playback via the Level-3 Hardware Acceleration, which is able to encode, decode and render HEVC videos with super fast speed.

6. iPhone videos are upside down

"My videos from iPhone 6S play perfectly fine on my computer, but get upside down on my 55LW5600 TV." In some cases, iPhone videos won't play in the right direction. This often happens on a TV and sometimes on BSplayer, media player classic, Mplayer and VLC. This is because Apple allows users to record videos using the volume up/down buttons and most users may rotate the device during the recording. Apple motion sensor will rotate the iPhone recorded video and users don't recognize that the video is actually upside down. When they import them into other devices, they will find the iPhone videos upside down. So you will need to rotate iPhone videos manually.

Step 1: Run VideoProc and click Video from the main interface. Then click +Video to load the iPhone video that won't play.
Step 2: From the Target Format bar, find ToolBox > select Rotate.
Step 3: Double click Rotate and you will enter into the rotate window. You can rotate the video to 90, 180, 360 degrees.
Step 4: Click Done and go back to the main interface. Then click Run to start processing the iPhone video.

iPhone videos not playing in the right direction
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Reuben Zaback

Hi, I'm Reuben Zaback and I've been an award-winning editor of Digiarty for four years. Writer by day and reader by night, I share programs reviews & tutorials, multimedia solutions, latest tech trends, devices tips, etc. I geek out over Apple products, sports cameras, drones, gadgets and always look to learn something new. My spare time is dominated by sports rehab and part-time study.

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