My Windows Phone won’t play videos

Windows Phone Videos

Windows Phone users should have no problem when it comes to watching videos on their device, but more often than not, videos, especially the ones from YouTube tend to act up. There are several reasons why videos won’t play on your Windows phone. Here are some of the common reasons:

Non Supported Files

Videos may not play when there are issues in identifying the file extension or the codec that is used to compress digital videos. Windows Phone offers native video codec support for VC1, H.263, H.264, and MPEG-4 Part 2. In other words it can play MP4, WMV, MOV, M4V or WMV extensions without the need for extra apps or plugins. However, if the video is not in one of these formats, it needs to be converted to a supported format before it can play on your phone. If your video is not is a format that is supported, try looking for an app on the Windows Store that offers support for such extensions.

Issues with YouTube App

If you are having issues accessing the YouTube app on your Windows Phone, you are not alone. Microsoft and Google have been at loggerheads with each other over the app that Microsoft offers its users. You can avoid the problem by simply choosing another third party app like MetroTube or PerfectTube or access the mobile version of YouTube on IE 11 which comes with HTML5 video and audio capabilities.


Digital Rights Management (DRM) protected videos may not play on your Windows Phone. Content that is usually purchased online is usually DRM protected, which means there is a restriction on their usage on “n” number of devices and device types.

Corrupt Files

One of the most common reasons for video play failure is corrupt files. This can happen for any number of reasons; improper encoding, improper file format change, or failed or interrupted data transfer among others. You can play the file on your PC or on another device to check if that indeed is the case.

Bugs in App

Sometimes, videos won’t play if there is an issue with the app on which it is rendered. This can happen if the app hasn’t been updated to the latest version or if there is a bug that is still unresolved. You could try restarting the phone, uninstalling and reinstalling the app or clearing the cache to see if it fixes the problem. If the issue still persists, reach out to the app developer for a solution.

Unstable Network Connection

If you are streaming videos directly from an online site or from an app, you may face issues if you have an unstable or a slow network connection. Sometimes, the site/app that you are streaming videos from may be having technical problems. Either way, do a speed test on sites like to identify such problems. Secondly, make sure to use a strong, stable Wi-Fi connection to stream video content from the Web.
So the next time you’re having trouble with watching videos on your Windows Phone, check these points to identify and resolve the issue.

Categorized as How-to

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