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How to fix non-working GIFs on Android

Let’s admit it, Android has a long and troubled history with GIFs. People get frustrated when their GIF won’t work, load, or send. Here’s the thing: On the more recent version of Android – with an updated browser – it’s still easy to run into problems. Even today, when I load a gif on Android, it’s still much slower when compared to my PC.

There are also times when a GIF won’t even load – even if you refresh the page. That can be pretty frustrating at times, right? Now, the big question is: If Android has grown so much so quickly, why can’t it play a GIF flawlessly? I mean, it can run almost everything else well, so why not GIFs?

The answer? From the start, Android hasn’t had built-in animated GIF support. It doesn’t naturally support GIFs. Yikes!


Is WebM an alternative for GIFs on Android?

Believe it or not, Android has had WebM support since around the time of Gingerbread, and it still works well today. If you aren’t familiar with WebM, it’s another video format that’s like a GIF, but with more potential, more useful data compression, and better quality.

If you have the choice between the two, always take WebM! (at least in my opinion)

“Teach me”

Now, if you’re asking if people use WebM – it depends on the website or the context – but when in use, the content is easy to view, save, and review at a later date. If you had a rooted device, it was possible to view and save GIFs, but it wasn’t ideal. Today, it’s supported far more across several Android devices, but sadly not all of them.

So here are a few tips to fix your GIF problems on Android. Let’s get into it!

Related: Best WebM to MP4 video Converter Softwares


How do you fix devices seeing the same GIF fifferently?

Since Android has several different versions on several different platforms, each device usually handles matters differently. GIFs have always been something that hasn’t been picture-perfect on Android, and if you add more Androids into the mix, it gets even more confusing.

How to Fix Not Working GIFs on Android - gif integration
GIF integration was never perfect

The sad part is unless you have Android 7.1 or up, good luck with just trying to send a friend a GIF through your default messenger. Yikes! So you might be asking: What can you do about this?

If you’re using a messenger like WhatsApp (which supports GIFs and videos on Android now), then make sure both users are using the same version of the app. Otherwise, send the link to the GIF instead of the GIF itself. This will stop the GIF from having problems when saved. It’s not a perfect solution, but when you’re dealing with more than one device, there isn’t one.

You can also try changing your stock keyboard to new ones that support GIFs. We recommend using Gboard from Google.


How can you fix slow or not working GIFs?

Android devices can view animated GIFs, although it hasn’t always supported it natively. Today, the biggest problem with GIFs is when they’re playing at a little slower than average speed.

Before, unless you wanted to dive into the programming or coding part of the platform, you were stuck with GIFs that didn’t move.

How Can You Fix Slow or Not Working GIFs - Reddit GIF Problems

What you can do is update your version of Android, if you have an older one. Or you can turn to a third-party app that can do all of the more difficult, time-consuming parts for you. If you’re looking for a good GIF player or viewer, I can recommend a few.


1. GIF Player – OmniGIF – Free

How to Fix Not Working GIFs on Android - OmniGIF logo

With this app, you can browse popular sites like Reddit and download the gifs you want and then view them in the app. It’s similar to a video player where you can pause, rewind, or change the speed.


Features:

  • Private Storage
  • Play Speed Control
  • Zoom and Drag

It’s ready to use, and it’s compatible with all Android devices, even the older versions. It has full Android native decoding, meaning that it’s fast and efficient–no matter the version of Android.

Google Play

2. GIF Keyboard by Tenor

How to Fix Not Working GIFs on Android - GIF Keyboard by Tenor

This GIF Keyboard by Tenor allows you to express what you’re trying to say through GIFs. It also allows you to create GIFs from your screen or camera. The GIF keyboard by Tenor is a great GIF app and it has positive user-reviews on the Play Store.


Features:

  • Create and upload your GIFs through the app
  • Send GIFs using your keyboard
  • Tons of categories to browse

This app is very user-friendly, so most people should have no problems using it. It can also integrate with your keyboard so you can send your GIFs to people easily.

Google Play

How to make GIFs on Android?

Even if you can’t view GIFs properly in your gallery, or a browser, there are still apps available that let you make and see GIFs. They’re relatively easy to use, and for most of them, all you need is either a video or a few pictures to stitch together.

Once you have the footage that you want, you can even edit the final product before you share it or save it. Although some of you won’t be able to view these files outside of the app without GIF support, you can still make them.

Related: Best GIF Creators Apps For Android


FAQs


Fix GIFs on Android – Animate your messages

Thankfully, there are plenty of easy ways to add GIF support to your Android. GIFs have been a famous media format for a long time, and even though WebM has started gaining even more popularity than before, GIFs will still be around for a long while.

GIFs are a way of expressing emotions, ideas, and thoughts. It’s a shame if your device encounters problems with just a single GIF. Thankfully, problems like these are easy to fix!

If you have any other questions about Android GIFs, feel free to share it with me in the comments below! You can also subscribe to our newsletter for more Android tips, tricks, and daily news!

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18 Comments

  1. Only some GIFs will run on my LG V20 in the Chrome browser. The others loop once and freeze. What do I do about that?

    1. Hi! Check your settings and confirm that you don’t have data saving options turned on. Don’t forget to check any data or battery manager apps you have installed as well.

      1. My phone is a motorola e5 plus android 8.0— when i try to put a gif on facebook i get a pop up saying chrome doesn’t support

  2. When I send or receive a GIF, it plays the animation as the smaller message in the thread but when I click on it it freezes and just show a still image. This just started happening and I have cleared my phone cache still does not work.

    Any suggestions?

  3. I have a Motorola Moto smartphone. I’ve downloaded several GIFs that work great. Two others get stuck and never completely download, and I have to waste time clearing out the file (i.e., deleting the file, putting it in the trash. What causes the GIF to just not download?

    1. Hi my name is Linda I have an LG v20. Enable to send out the GIF to my girlfriend. Before absolutely no problems and I was able to erase them and all of a sudden I’m not able to send them or erase them but I can do everyone else what is the problem can you please help me thank you

  4. Updated to android 9, using mood for messaging app, can no longer use the gif function in the app, says connection problem. Phone is a lg thinq7 on Sprint. Thanks in advance Tim

    1. Hi Tim P,
      We are sorry to hear that the gif function is not working in your messaging app. Did you try out the fixes in this article?

  5. I’m having problems with my gifs appearing small while attaching them from Giphy to Facebook. Please help me it’s really annoying. Thanks

  6. I am having problems on my Pinterest app showing Gifs. It does not show it takes some time before it starts moving. Also with Video’s I am have my the same problem. I am using Chrome as my browser I know it is not a reliable browser but it goes with Android.

  7. None of the fixes in this article work on my android phone. Is there another source of information available? I have Gboard and it was working great but now it doesn’t send or receive gifs.

    1. Hi Jemille! Reset your Gboard app’s cache, restart your phone, and see if you’ll still encounter the same problem.

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