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How to Download TikTok Videos on Desktop and Mobile

TikTok is a treasure trove of bite-sized videos. And you may even have shared some TikTok videos with friends. But what if you’d like to download TikTok videos to watch later?

In this article, we’ll show you how to download TikTok videos on desktop and mobile. Which is a lot easier than you might think.

Why You Should Download TikTok Videos

There are several reasons why you may want to download a TikTok video.

TikTok comes with an endless stream of unique and fresh entertainment. Since the apps don’t have a native offline mode, you can download the clips you like to watch them later when you’re without an internet connection.

In addition, you may just prefer sharing videos instead of links on messaging apps. TikTok isn’t merely about lip-syncing or silly videos either. It houses a wide range of videos such as cooking tutorials. Therefore, you can employ the download functionality to, for instance, save a food recipe you want to try at some point.

As we’ll discuss later in this article, TikTok does allow you to directly download other people’s videos. However, irrespective of TikTok’s policies, you should be mindful of people’s privacy and not misuse these methods for any illicit purposes.

How to Download TikTok Videos on Android and iOS

TikTok offers a built-in download button on its Android and iOS apps. It instantly saves the video you’re watching on your phone’s local storage.

To download a TikTok video, you first need to launch its app. Log in if you haven’t already. The download option will only work as long as you’re signed in.

Next, navigate to the video you’d like to save, and tap it. There will be a handful of quick actions in the video player’s bottom right-hand corner. The feature you’re looking for is under the Share button. Select it, and then tap Save Video.

The app will begin downloading the video and pull up a carousel of social share links for forwarding the file immediately. Since the video is saved to your phone’s gallery, you don’t have to share it right away if you don’t want to. You can simply go back to discard the social icons and access the video from your camera roll.

It’s worth keeping in mind that when you share a video from TikTok, the app automatically sends it as a video instead of a link. Hence, you don’t have to manually hit the Save as Video button for when you just want to forward it on a social or messaging app.

How to Download a TikTok Video as a GIF

You also have the choice to download a TikTok video as a GIF. The Share as GIF option is present on the far right of the same row as Save Video. When you tap it, TikTok lets you trim the clip to your liking as well. Hit Generate to save the resulting GIF on your phone.

Do note that TikTok users have the ability to make their videos private. In that case, the Save Video button won’t be available for viewers. As a workaround, you can record your phone’s screen as it’s playing.

On iOS, users can utilize the native screen recording option. To add it to the control center, go to Settings > Control Center > Customize Controls, and inside More Controls, tap the green plus button beside Screen Recording. Pull up the control center, touch the screen recording button, and off you go.

Android users, however, will have to rely on one of these third-party screen recorders for Android

The Best Screen Recorder Apps for Android

The Best Screen Recorder Apps for Android

Here are the best screen recorder apps for Android, plus an advanced method, allowing you to capture screencasts and more.
Read More

. To use it, launch the app, play the video, and tap the record button.

You can block users from downloading your TikTok videos by heading to Settings > Privacy and Safety and turning off the Allow Download option.

How to Download TikTok Videos on Desktop

Unlike its mobile apps, TikTok’s download option is not available on its website. So you will have to use a third-party service to download TikTok videos on your computer.

TikTok Videos Downloader

TikTok videos downloader

A website called TikTok Videos Downloader is one of these third-party services. It allows you to save any TikTok video in its original resolution. All you need to do is enter the clip’s link.

To grab a TikTok video’s link, open it in your web browser, and copy the page’s URL from the address bar at the top.

Once you have the link, head over to TikTok Videos Downloader. Paste the URL in the giant text box in the center. Click Download and choose the format. You can either download it as a video or an MP3 audio file. The video will be stored in your computer’s Downloads folder.

Instant Google Chrome Extension

Download TikTok videos with Instant chrome extension

Alternatively, you can install a Google Chrome extension titled Instant and avoid the copy-pasting process. Instant enables you to bookmark and download videos from both Instagram and TikTok.

When you’ve installed Instant, you will see a new flash icon at the top right corner of Google Chrome. Visit the TikTok video you’d like to download. Click the Instant button to bookmark the clip.

Right-click it again and select Options. Instant will launch a new dashboard-like page where you will find all your saved TikTok or Instagram videos. To download them to your computer, hover over a video’s thumbnail and click the orange arrow button.

If you don’t want this to be a two-step process, you can change it in Instant’s settings. In the top-right corner of Instant’s dashboard, click the Preferences button and switch on the “Automatically download saved videos to your computer” option. Now, Instant will download the video locally to your desktop as soon as you save a TikTok clip.

Instant is not yet available for any other browser. However, Mozilla Firefox users can try an add-on called TikTok Downloader.

A Beginner’s Guide to Using TikTok

TikTok is home to some of the internet’s funniest videos today. And using these methods you can easily save your favorite TikTok videos to your phone or computer.

If you’re new to TikTok and want to understand what it is and how it works, here’s our beginner’s guide to using TikTok

What Is TikTok and How Does It Work?

What Is TikTok and How Does It Work?

What is TikTok? Here’s everything you need to know, including what TikTok is, how it works, and how to use it.
Read More


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How to Watch Flagged Youtube Videos Without Logging In

If you want to watch an NSFW YouTube video you have to be logged in to your Google account first. The problem is you can’t always log in. Maybe you’re on a shared computer, or it’s just too much hassle when you only want to watch a two-minute clip.

Fortunately, there are a couple of workarounds that enable you to watch without signing in. One involves using a website like NSFWYouTube, the other is a neat trick on the YouTube site itself. Let’s take a look.

sign in to confirm your age youtube

Two Tools to Watch NSFW YouTube Videos

There are a couple of websites that let you watch age-restricted YouTube videos without signing in.

They’re both simple to use and work when you’re watching in a web browser. Let’s cover them together as both involve a small YouTube URL trick to bypass the block.

1. Visit YouTube and load up the video you want to watch.

2. If you’re prompted to sign in, click in the address bar at the top of your browser window instead.

3. Highlight the part of the address that says youtube.com and change it to nsfwyoutube.com.


4. Alternatively, change youtube.com to listenonrepeat.com. Hit Enter to continue.

listenonrepeat watch nsfw youtube videos

5. You’ll now be taken to either of those websites to watch your video. You won’t need to sign in to your account to view them.

Both sites work in the same way. We’d recommend ListenOnRepeat as the best option.

It’s a better looking website with more features. You can create an account to save or favorite the videos you like, and also join in the chat on the site’s Discord channel.

nsfw youtube videos

NSFWYouTube, by contrast, has no extra features. It’s also a more rough and ready website and has a tendency to show some pretty sketchy ads. On the plus side, it doesn’t pester you with irrelevant YouTube recommendations.

Hack the YouTube URL

There’s a second way to watch NSFW YouTube videos without logging in.

As before, this method involves changing the address to the video in your browser’s address bar. But this time it doesn’t take you away from the official YouTube website.

watch age restricted youtube videos

  1. Load up the age-restricted video you want to watch.
  2. Click in the address bar in your browser.
  3. The URL will begin with www.youtube.com/watch?… Highlight the word watch and change it to embed/ so the address now begins www.youtube.com/embed/?
  4. Hit Enter and the video will fill your browser window. Just click Play to watch it.

What’s great about this method is that it keeps you on the YouTube website. If you do find a video you like, you can save it by clicking the Watch Later button—you’ll be prompted to log in again. You can also share videos and load up playlists.

In our tests, we found it worked most of the time. It would occasionally throw up a YouTube Playback ID error, which we could sometimes fix using these tips for when YouTube isn’t working.

Also, there’s no guarantee that YouTube won’t at some point close the loophole this is based on, so it may not work forever. However, while it is working it’s very simple and effective.

A Few More YouTube Tricks

Watching NSFW videos without signing in isn’t the only way to bypass some of YouTube’s restrictions.

Did you know you can download specific portions of videos, or skip sponsored segments in the middle of clips? We’ll show you how—and a whole lot more—in our guide to the best cheats to break YouTube restrictions

5 YouTube Cheats to Break Restrictions and Make YouTube Fun Again

5 YouTube Cheats to Break Restrictions and Make YouTube Fun Again

Want a better YouTube experience? Here are a few apps with smart ideas so that you can watch YouTube in a much better way.
Read More


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How to Make YouTube Videos Loop Continuously

Loop Continuously YouTube

Should you need a YouTube video on a continuous loop, a few methods can help you keep repeating a video without having to start it over manually. Here’s how to do it.

Use the Right-Click Context Menu

Fire up YouTube in your browser and select a video you want to loop. Right-click anywhere on the video to bring up the context menu and click the “Loop” button.

Right-click the video and click "Loop."

If you right-click again, you’ll see a checkmark next to “Loop,” signifying that the video will repeat when it reaches the end.

A video set to loop over again will have a checkmark next to "Loop" in the context menu.

To turn Loop off, simply open the context menu again by right-clicking the video and selecting the “Loop” button to disable it.

Right-click the video and click "Loop" one more time to turn it off.

Create a Playlist

This next method is useful for when you have more than one video you want to have on a continuous loop, whereas the previous method works for a single video only. You’ll have to be signed in to YouTube to access this feature.

Fire up Youtube, queue up a video, and click the “Save” button, located next to the upvote and downvote icons.

Fire up a video and click "Save."

Click the “Create a New Playlist” button.

Click "Create a new playslist" if you don't already have one made.

Next, name the playlist, set the privacy, and then click the “Create” button.

Give it a name, set the privacy setting, and then click "Create."

When you click “Save” to add another video to the playlist, click the checkbox next to the playlist you just created.

Click the checkbox next to the new playlist.

Next, click the Hamburger icon on the left side of the web interface and then select the name of the playlist.

Click the Hamburger icon, and then click on the playlist you created.

Click the “Play All” button.

Click "Play all."

When the first video loads, scroll down and click on the “Loop” icon to put the playlist into a continuous loop.

When the first video loads, click on the Loop icon, located underneath the video.

Use a Chrome Extension

Looper for YouTube is an easy way to watch the same video again without having to press the loop button. With the extension, the YouTube player adds a special “Loop” button underneath it. You can even set how many times it will repeat or to repeat only a specific portion of the video.

Head to the Chrome web store and add the extension to your browser.

Add the extension to Chrome.

After the extension installs, head to YouTube and open a video. Click on the “Loop” button to open the menu for looping your video. Alternatively, you can press “P” on your keyboard to enable loop that way.

When you fire up a video, click on the "Loop" icon, located underneth the video player.

By default, the extension will loop your video indefinitely. If you want to change that, click either checkbox to loop as many times as you need or to loop a specific portion of the video.

Manually set how many times it will repeat and which part of the video to loop.

No matter the reason, if you need to loop a YouTube video, there’s more than one way to get it done and listen/watch continuously without having to interact with the player.

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How to Make a YouTube Playlist for Your Favorite Videos

YouTube is one of the most successful and longest-running social media sites still in operation. Over a decade after launch, it remains one of the “titans” of social media.

Even if you’re not a YouTuber, you can still curate content on the platform. And in this article we show you how to make a YouTube playlist full of your favorite videos.

Step 1: How to Find Content for Your Playlist

Find Videos on YouTube

YouTube playlists are all about content curation: about grouping together similar objects so it’s easier for people to watch videos about a specific subject.

If you upload your own videos, finding this content can be pretty easy. However, let’s say you want to create a YouTube playlist from content that other people have posted. Let’s also say that you want to consolidate your favorite videos on a certain topic in one place, and share this list with other people.

Well, then you have to search for this content.

For this tutorial, I decided that I wanted to put together a short YouTube playlist on my favorite psychology videos. To search for videos on this subject, make sure you’re logged into YouTube, then go to the search bar and begin typing:

Use YouTube Search Bar to Find Videos

Step 2: How to Add Content to Your Playlist

After some searching, you’ll start to find videos that fit the subject matter of your playlist.

To add a video to your own YouTube playlist, click the SAVE button beneath the video that you’re playing. This is a button a lot of you will be familiar with, because it’s the first step in adding third-party content to a YouTube playlist that you’re creating.

Save Video to YouTube Playlist

When you click SAVE, a new popup menu will emerge. In this popup menu, you can save this video to a previously created YouTube playlist, or you can create a brand new one.

For this tutorial, let’s create a new list. Click on + Create a new playlist.

Create a New Playlist on YouTube

After you click + Create a new playlist, this popup menu will expand further. You’ll have the chance to rename the playlist, along with managing its privacy settings.

  • Private means that the YouTube playlist can only be viewed by you.
  • Unlisted means that the playlist can only be viewed by others if they have the direct link.
  • Public means that your playlist is visible to anyone searching YouTube.

Normally this is where people stop creating a YouTube playlist, because by following these simple steps you can design a basic one. However, you can definitely push YouTube’s customization further, so let’s do that now.

While we’re still working on those customization settings, we’ll leave the playlist’s privacy settings to Private.

Once you name your video and adjust its privacy settings, click CREATE.

Name Your YouTube Playlist

After you click CREATE, YouTube will create your playlist.

You can continue adding videos to it by pressing the SAVE button beneath each new video you watch. Check off the box next to the playlist that you want to add the video to.

If you don’t want to spend a lot of time finding content, here’s how to automatically add videos to YouTube playlists

How to Automatically Add New Videos to YouTube Playlists

How to Automatically Add New Videos to YouTube Playlists

YouTube can automatically add new videos to your playlists based on certain keywords that you set up.
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Step 3: How to Find the Playlist in Your Channel

Find a Playlist in Your YouTube Channel

After you have all the videos that you need for your playlist, you’ll want to go back into the list itself and fiddle with the settings. But how do you find your YouTube playlist on your channel, especially if you set your YouTube video playlist to private?

If you go to the top right-hand corner of your screen and click on your profile icon, then click Your channel, you’ll be taken to your channel screen:

Go to Your YouTube Channel to Find Your Playlist

If you have no publicly available playlists, YouTube will not show your playlists in the “public” view of your channel.

To find your full list of YouTube playlists—public or private—you need to look to your left (if you’re on a desktop or laptop). On the left side of your screen, you’ll see a list under the Watch later button, including the playlist you just created.

Click on your private YouTube playlist’s name—in our case, “My Favorite Psychology Videos”—to be taken to that playlist’s screen.

Find Your Private Playlist on Your YouTube Channel

Step 4: How to Edit Your YouTube Playlist

Once you click on that link, you’ll be taken to a page similar to the screenshot that we posted below. On this page, you’ll see basic information that you need to know about your YouTube playlist, including:

  • The playlist’s thumbnail image.
  • Its privacy status.
  • How many videos are in the playlist.
  • When the playlist was updated.
  • Who created the playlist.

To the right of that, you’ll see a series of thumbnail images and the titles of the videos that you have added. To finesse this YouTube playlist further, click on the EDIT button, seen here in red.

Edit Your YouTube Playlist

Step 5: Tricks to Editing Your Playlist

Let’s say you add videos to your YouTube playlist in the order that you found them, but you don’t like them listed in that order, and you don’t want YouTube to sort these videos by another automatic order, either. You want to adjust the video order manually.

To manually move around your videos, click and drag on the long, narrow bar on the left-hand side of your video thumbnail, seen here in red:

Manually Move Around the Videos on Your YouTube Playlist

Move that video to the appropriate section on your playlist. When you have it in the right spot, release your mouse.

If you click the More option on the right-hand side of each of these videos, you will see several “quick” filtering options that you can apply to each YouTube video. You can:

  • Move your video to the top of the YouTube playlist.
  • Move your video to the bottom of the YouTube playlist.
  • Add/edit notes to each video on your playlist.
  • Set as playlist thumbnail, which sets that individual video’s “image” as the overall cover art for your YouTube playlist.

Explore the "More" Option on Your YouTube Video Playlist

Play around with these options as you see fit.

Finally, you can also add more videos directly from this edit screen. To do this, click on the Add videos button in the top right-hand corner of the list. When you do, a screen will pop up that says Add video to playlist.

Add Videos to Your YouTube Video Playlist

From here, you can search for more videos to add to your YouTube playlist: either through a YouTube search, a direct URL, or your own videos.

Step 6: Tweak Your Playlist Privacy Settings

Now that you have your YouTube Playlist in working order, you’ll want to publish it. Unfortunately it’s still private, so we have to switch a few settings around.

To adjust your playlist’s privacy settings, click on Playlist settings, at the top of your edit screen. Make sure you’re on the tab that says Basic.

YouTube Video Playlist Privacy Settings

Under PLAYLIST PRIVACY, you’ll see three options for playlist privacy: private, unlisted, and public. Make sure it’s set to Public.

Under ORDERING, you’ll see top-level controls for the order in which the videos on your YouTube playlist are organized. Right now ours is set to Manual, but if you aren’t happy with that setting, you can order it by date added, most popular, or date published.

Two more things to note:

  • Under the Auto add section, you can set up new rules for automatically adding videos to your playlist. We talked about this in this article, under “Section 2.”
  • You can also allow other people to add videos to your playlist, under the Collaborate tab.

To learn more about collaboration, here’s how to make a collaborative playlist on YouTube

How to Make a Collaborative Playlist on YouTube

How to Make a Collaborative Playlist on YouTube

Why build YouTube playlists alone when you can get friends and family to help you?
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Once these settings are adjusted, click Save. The newly created, highly curated YouTube playlist is now available for public viewing.

A Beginner’s Guide to YouTube Playlists

YouTube has a lot of useful tools that help you curate and share your favorite videos. So for more help making and managing YouTube playlists, we recommend you read our beginner’s guide to YouTube playlists

The Beginner’s Guide to YouTube Playlists: All You Need to Know

The Beginner’s Guide to YouTube Playlists: All You Need to Know

In this YouTube beginner’s guide, we will tell you about the advantages of YouTube playlists and how you can leverage them to learn anything and enjoy everything.
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How to Download Facebook Photos and Videos

Facebook is a treasure trove of photos and videos of you and your friends. So here’s how to download Facebook photos and videos to your computer or phone.

We’ll show you the official methods as well as third-party Facebook photo downloader apps. Allowing you to download your photos, your friends’ photos, and videos.

How to Download Facebook Photos

download a full-size image of any picture on Facebook

If you want to save a single photo on Facebook, don’t bother with third-party apps or websites. Facebook itself offers an easy downloader tool.

  • On Desktop: Open the photo, hover your mouse over it until you see the caption and menu options, and click Options > Download.
  • On Mobile: Open the photo in the Facebook app, tap Menu (the three-dot icon) > Save Photo.

You can use this method to download Facebook photos. It’s as simple as that. However, to download your friends’ Facebook photos, their Facebook photo privacy settings

Facebook Photo Privacy Settings You Need To Know About

Facebook Photo Privacy Settings You Need To Know About

As with everything regarding privacy on Facebook, managing your photos’ privacy settings isn’t always easy.
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should allow for it.

How to Download Facebook Albums

how to download a full photo album from Facebook

If you want to download a Facebook album from your own profile, Facebook has a simple method to do that. Again, you don’t need any third-party downloader apps for this.

  1. Browse to your profile by clicking your own name.
  2. Go to Photos > Albums.
  3. Open the album that you want to download.
  4. In the top-right corner, click the cog icon and click Download Album.

Facebook will get to work zipping up all of the pictures. Depending on the size of the album, this can take some time. Once it’s done, you will get a notification telling you that the album is ready to download.

The downloaded album comes as a .zip file. Extract it to get all the pictures.

How to Download All of Your Facebook Photos

How to download all your facebook photos and videos

There is also a simple method to download all photos from Facebook that you have ever uploaded. You will even get them in the right sub-folders by album. But the names of the files can be a little strange.

Here’s the easy Facebook photo downloader offered by Facebook itself:

  1. Browse to Facebook settings on your desktop browser, or click Facebook.com/Settings.
  2. Click Your Facebook information in the sidebar.
  3. Tap Download your information.
  4. Click Deselect all, then select only the Photos and videos box.
  5. Choose the quality of the image files. I recommend changing Medium to High if you want full-resolution copies. The setting you choose will determine the size of the file. If you have a lot of pictures, this will increase the file size and the time taken to get it ready.
  6. Click Create File.

Facebook will take some time to get the .zip file ready, depending on how many photos and videos you have on Facebook. This can be several gigabytes too. Once it’s done, you will get a notification to download it from Available Files. Download and unzip it to see all of your images, with albums as sub-folders.

The Best Facebook Photo Downloader App

The name is a mouthful, but VNHero Studio’s Download Videos and Photos: Facebook and Instagram is the best Facebook picture downloader app out there. It’s free, it’s super easy to use, and it works for videos too.

With this app, you can download your own photos and albums, and your friends’ Facebook photo albums too. You can also search for users or pages, and download photos and videos from there. The app menu has quick links for pages you have liked, saved videos and images, and bookmarks.

Tap “Your Photos” for your own pictures, or “From Friends” to browse for someone in your friends list. The “Search Users” box is to find a user or a page. Then browse to the album you want. Here, you can download all photos in the album or select a few to save. The method also works for videos.

Download: VNHero Studio’s Download Videos and Photos: Facebook and Instagram for Android (Free)

How to Download Other People’s Facebook Albums

Chrome extension DownAlbum lets you grab full albums from anyone's Facebook photos

While Facebook makes it easy to download your own albums, it doesn’t let you save a friend’s albums. Most Facebook photo album downloader apps don’t work. The best working app we found is a third-party Chrome extension called DownAlbum.

Be warned, DownAlbum isn’t easy to use. However, our recommended app is only available on Android, so if you want a Facebook photo album downloader app that’s not on Android, here’s how to use DownAlbum.

  1. On your desktop, create a new folder called DownAlbum.
  2. Download: DownAlbum for Chrome (Free).
  3. Open Facebook and browse to a friend’s photo album.
  4. Once the DownAlbum icon turns orange, click it.
  5. In the dropdown menu, click Normal.
  6. Click OK on any confirmation dialog boxes, and wait for DownAlbum to load all of the photos.
  7. Wait for it to load; it can take some time. The new tab has instructions on how to download your friend’s Facebook photos to your computer. You’ll need to press Ctrl+S on Windows and Linux or CMD+S on macOS.
  8. Save it as Webpage, Complete inside the DownAlbum folder on your desktop. This will generate an HTML file as well as a folder with all the pictures in it.
  9. Close Chrome, and then on your computer go to the folder in DownAlbum. Cut and paste the pictures in any other folder of your choice, and then delete all files in the DownAlbum folder.

How to Save Facebook Videos to Your Computer or Phone

FBDown.net is the easiest app to download and save Facebook videos to your hard drive

Pictures on Facebook have a simple Download button. But videos don’t have any such easy way to download them. FBDown.net is one of the easiest web apps to save Facebook videos. It works on both desktop computers and smartphones.

  1. Open the Facebook video and copy its link.
  2. Head to FBDown and paste the link. Click or tap the Download! button.
  3. Click Download Video in HD Quality or Normal Quality, and start downloading.
  4. Optional: In case the video plays in your window instead of downloading, go back to the previous page. Right-click on Download Video in HD Quality, choose Save link as… and download it to the folder of your choice.

It should work like a charm. The downloaded file will be in MP4 format, which should be fine for most people. The method works on mobile browsers as well. However, iOS users will need to do it on Firefox as you can’t use Safari or Chrome.

FBDown also has a handy extension for Google Chrome on desktop. When you are playing a Facebook video, click the extension icon to download it to your computer.

Visit: FBDown.net

Download: FBDown for Chrome (Free)

There are lots of other sites that work the same as FBDown, so don’t be afraid to try those. Now that you can save FB videos, you might want to go back and search for old videos you liked. To help you do that, here’s how to find videos on Facebook

How to Find Videos on Facebook

How to Find Videos on Facebook

It isn’t always easy to find what you’re looking for on Facebook. Here’s how to find videos on Facebook.
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How to Download Your Entire Facebook History

Apart from photos and videos, Facebook has a ton of other information about you. The company is also notorious for (allegedly) misusing its users’ data. Plus, the social network can shut down your account any time it wants, causing you to lose all of that data.

The above methods let you download photos and videos easily, but you might want to consider backing up your Facebook history as well. So here’s how to download your entire Facebook history

How to Download Your Entire Facebook History

How to Download Your Entire Facebook History

Over the years Facebook has collected a lot of data about you. In this article, we explain how to download your Facebook history and what you’re likely to find lurking within.
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10 Simple Tips to Make Home Videos Look Professional

If you shoot a lot of videos but are rarely happy with the results, you aren’t alone. Most people would love to know how to make better videos.

Fortunately, it’s not that difficult. Whether you’re recording something to publish online or simply to capture memories to keep and share, these simple tips will help you make better videos.

Read on to discover how to make your home videos look more professional.

1. Always Use the Back Camera

This may seem like an obvious rule, but it’s easy to forget. The rear camera on a phone is better quality, has a higher resolution, and offers more features within the app. It will almost always give you better results.

Do you need some tips for recording yourself? Okay, in many cases we’d still recommend using the rear camera, with your phone propped up on a desk or wall. If you prefer the handheld approach then you can use the front camera, but feel free to rotate the phone so you shoot in landscape mode.

video recording yourself tips

If you’re speaking directly into camera make sure you look into the lens, not at the screen. Otherwise your video will make it seem like you’re looking over your viewer’s shoulder.

2. Stability and Focus

There are two big requirements for making a great video: holding the camera still, and keeping it in focus.

Many phones, cameras, and camcorders have built-in image stabilization. This helps keep your video steady, but you need to know its limitations. IS works better when you’re holding the camera still to begin with—shooting while walking can easily result in unwanted camera shake.

If you want to shoot smoothly while moving, see our guide to the best iPhone gimbals

The 5 Best Gimbals for the iPhone

The 5 Best Gimbals for the iPhone

If you’re after the best gimbal for iPhone, we can help. Here are the top gimbals for mobile videography available today.
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to find your ideal device.

Without IS, hold your device with both hands when recording video. Use a tripod or makeshift alternative to keep your camera still—even a bag of rice can serve as a great DIY stabilization device.

3. Record in Landscape Mode

The simple first step to learning how to make professional videos is to remember to shoot in landscape mode—turn your phone on its side.

shoot video in landscape

Vertical, or portrait, videos are fine if you’re only ever going to look at them on your phone. The moment you try to watch it on a TV, laptop, tablet, or almost any other device its ill-fitting orientation will jump out as a surefire sign of amateur hour.

And besides, you can fit more into the frame in landscape mode. This means less need to constantly pan left and right, which in turn leads to a classier looking finished product.

4. Add a Grid

The only thing worse than watching a video recorded in portrait mode is watching a video taken at a wonky angle. Adding a grid lets you use your background as a point of reference to ensure that your recording is always straight.

Most devices have this option, available via a setting you may need to enable within your camera app.

rule of thirds grid video

The grid helps you align your video against a line in the background to ensure you’re recording straight videos.

It aids composition, too. If you’re recording people, position their eyes in level with the top grid line.

Photo enthusiasts will know this as the Rule of Thirds, which helps you frame items within your shot better. You can read more about this in our guide to the essential photography tips for beginners.

5. Lighting

While it’s easy enough to lighten dark or underexposed photos, dark or underexposed videos bring a number of bigger problems:

  • It’s hard to brighten video without degrading the quality and introducing noise.
  • The camera finds it harder to focus in low light. It might even continually drift in and out of focus.
  • If you’re using Auto mode, as you’re likely to be when making a homemade video, the camera will reduce the frame rate when filming in poor light. This results in jerky video that you won’t be able to fix.

What’s the solution? As a general rule, try to make sure that your subject is illuminated by a bright source of light that’s ideally behind you. Use your smartphone’s flashlight only as an absolute last resort.

If you want to shoot regularly in low light you might need to upgrade your gear so you can use fast lenses and full manual controls.

6. Experiment With Angles

It’s natural to just hold up the camera and start shooting. Yet if you want to make professional videos at home you need to experiment more with the angles you use.

Instead of shooting everything at eye level from one spot, try taking a wide shot then moving closer to your subject to shoot a close-up. Then edit the two shots together. Or hold the camera over your head to capture the action from above. Or crouch down and shoot upwards.

Have some fun trying to find what works. You don’t need to make every shot completely different, but a bit of variety can work wonders.

7. Zoom With Your Feet

When you want to get a close up view of something, it’s tempting to reach for your camera’s zoom button. But this can come with problems. Most smartphones only offer digital zoom, which can degrade the quality of your image. Plus, the further you zoom the more likely your video is to become jerky, even if you’re using image stabilization.

So what do you do if you want to get closer to your subject? Zoom with your feet. Stop filming, move closer to the subject, and start shooting once more. Simple!

8. Use Effects (But Don’t Overuse Them)

Video effects are the equivalent of photo filters. They look great when they’re used properly, but you can easily overdo it. Still, most cameras and smartphones offer a few options that can add some pizzazz to your videos.


iPhones have a great timelapse feature built into the default Camera app, but apps like Lapse It let you emulate this effect on Android. Try using it at a time where you can use all (or most) of the above rules.

Timelapses work brilliantly if you can steadily position your camera for a prolonged time over an area that’s constantly changing—for example, on the top of a bridge to capture a sunset or star trails.

Slow Motion

Slow motion can add drama to a video, or expose detail that’s normally lost in fast moving action. Keep it short, though. Video normally plays back at 30 frames per second, so a clip shot at 120fps will last four times longer than the real world speed.


Cinemagraphs are a like a cross between a video and a photo—most of the image is still, apart from one or two choice parts that are moving.

A lot of smartphone camera apps offer this feature, or you can download an app like Cinemagraph Pro on iOS or VIMAGE on Android to try it out for yourself. The effect can be very impressive.

9. Learn Basic Video Editing

Serious video editing is beyond the scope of this article, but a little basic editing can help make your videos look more professional.

We have guides to the best free video editing apps for Windows

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The Best Free Video Editors for Windows

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, the best video editors for Android

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The 10 Best Video Editors for Android

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, and the best iOS apps to edit videos

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. Apart from letting you remove unwanted parts from your video clips, these tools let you merge multiple clips and photos, add a soundtrack, video filters, and create mini-movies worth sharing.

Just trimming the start and end of a clip will often improve it massively, as will splitting a longer clip into several shorter ones and trimming the fat from those. This is especially true for something you want to share online.

Even better is to use multiple shots rather than capturing everything in one go. Keep them to around five to 10 seconds each, and stitch a few together in an editing app when you’re done.

10. Cheat With the Editing

Not everyone has the patience and skill to carefully edit multiple clips into a montage. Thankfully there are free apps that do this for you. Apps like Google Photos and GoPro’s Quik (available for Android and iOS) are superb.

google photos auto edit videos

All you need to do is select the media files you want, select one of the free background tracks, and add a theme. Both apps then stitch your videos together to create a montage, saving you valuable time and making you look like a pro in the process.

How to Make Better Videos

It isn’t hard to make professional looking videos at home. None of these tips require any great technical ability, and with a little practice you’ll be shooting awesome videos in no time at all.

So where do you go next? Well, first, remember that sound is an equally important part of the process, so check out these tips to help you record better audio.

Then take a look at the most popular types of YouTube videos

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to help get your creative juices flowing.

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How to Convert AVI and MKV Files to Add Videos to iTunes

iTunes is great for managing your video collection, but it only supports a limited number of video types. If you’ve got a bunch of MKV movies to watch, or if you want to add AVI files to iTunes you will need to convert them first.

Fortunately, this is easy enough to do, and you can do it with free software available on Windows, Mac, and Linux. Read on to find out how to add AVI and MKV files to iTunes.

iTunes Video Formats

Can iTunes play AVI or MKV files? No, it only works with MP4, M4V, and QuickTime videos. This is not only annoying if you use iTunes to manage your media files on your desktop, but it also makes it harder to transfer these files to watch on an iPhone or iPad.

The simplest solution is to convert the files to a format that iTunes can work with. But which video format is best

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We’d recommend converting videos to MP4 with the H264 codec. This offers a good balance between quality and file size, and is playable on pretty much every device.

iTunes can also handle H265 (also known as HEVC) files. This format is even more efficient, with much higher quality at much smaller file sizes, and is ideal for 4K movies.

The problem is, H265 is processor intensive so runs on fewer devices. If you’re planning to watch your movies on an iPad or laptop then it should be okay. But if you’ve got something like an older Roku device, or watch movies off a flash drive through your TV’s USB port, they may not work.

The conversion process takes a while, depending on the size of your file, the settings you choose, and how powerful your computer is. It’s best to set aside a couple of hours for the task to complete.

Re-encoding video with a different will result in a loss of quality. But as long as you use a fairly high-quality original file, you shouldn’t really be able to notice it.

Handbrake is free, open source, and available for Windows, Mac, and Linux. It’s also arguably the best program for converting all types of video files.

You can use HandBrake to rip DVD and Blu-Ray videos

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as well or convert a wide variety of other video formats you might come across. You can select your conversion settings in just a few seconds or spend a while tweaking them in detail, whichever you prefer.

Convert Videos with Handbrake

The interface can look a bit confusing at first, but it’s actually very easy to use. After installing and launching HandBrake, click the Open Source button on the toolbar and select your AVI or MKV file.


Next, click Preset. Here you’ll find a lot of pre-configured options that let you convert videos without needing to understand the technical details behind the process.

If you’re converting your video for a specific device, like a Roku or Apple TV, then find these under the Devices list. In most cases, though, you’ll want to use the General settings.

First, pick a speed you’re happy with. Very Fast is the fastest and produces smaller file sizes, but will deliver lower quality. Super HQ is the best for quality with the biggest files but could take many hours to complete. Fast is a decent compromise setting.

handbrake presets

Then pick a resolution. This should be the same or lower than your original video, not higher. Check that Format is set to MP4.

By default, these settings will convert your video to the H264 codec. If you’d rather use the newer H265, click the Video tab and set Video Encoder to H.265 (x265). You can keep the other default settings.

handbrake convert to h265

Finally, click the Browse button alongside Save as at the bottom and choose the folder the new MP4 file will be saved to. Enter a new name for it if you like. Hit Start to begin converting your video.

Once done, you can import the resulting MP4 file into iTunes and move it to your mobile device; everything should work normally.

You probably already have the free and open-source VLC media player installed, so why bother downloading another application? VLC is packed with hidden features

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, and a video converter is one of them. The process to use it differs slightly depending on whether you’re using Mac or Windows.

On a Mac, click the File menu and select Convert / Stream.

On the next screen, add the media file you want to convert. Set the Profile to Video – H.264 + MP3 (MP4)—there’s no option to convert to H265 in VLC. You can also customize the conversion profile settings if you like, but this isn’t necessary.

convert video vlc mac

Finally, under Choose Destination select Save as File. When prompted, choose the folder where you want to save your converted video, and add a new name if needed.

Click Save to begin the conversion.

To get started on Windows, go to Media > Convert / Save. Add your video file, then click the Convert / Save button and select Convert.

convert video vlc windows

Under Settings, set the Profile to Video – H.264 + MP3 (MP4), then click Browse to choose where you want to save your video. Finally, click Start to begin the conversion.

Once VLC is done transcoding the video, you’ll get an MP4 or M4V file you can import to iTunes and transfer to your mobile devices.

Other AVI to MP4 Converters

Handbrake and VLC are both perfect for converting movies and letting you use iTunes with AVI or MKV files. If you’d prefer an even more seamless way of getting these files onto your iPhone or iPad, one that bypasses iTunes altogether, then take a look at WALTR2.

convert avi mkv with waltr2

This paid app is well regarded by its users. It transfers files to your device via Wi-Fi and converts any unsupported files in the process. It’s a quick and powerful drag and drop tool, plus it works on both Mac and Windows.

So now you know how to convert videos to use in iTunes, but where can you get the videos in the first place? Our guide on how to download YouTube playlists

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 is a good place to start.

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How to Rotate iPhone Videos Without Installing an App

Apple iPhone Rotate Video in Photos App iOS 13

For years, iPhone users needed to download a third-party video editor app to rotate videos. With the launch of iOS 13, users can fix the orientation of videos from the built-in Photos app. Here’s how.

Start by opening the “Photos” app on your iPhone. If you can’t find the icon, swipe down on the home screen and use Spotlight search to find the app.

Apple iPhone Click Photos App

Scroll down to the “Media types” section and tap on “Videos.” Alternatively, you can select the “Recents” album.

Apple iPhone Click Videos or Recents Album

Locate the video that you want to rotate. Tap on the file to view the expanded video.

Apple iPhone Click Video to Edit

Select the “Edit” button found in the top-right corner of the display.

Apple iPhone Click Edit Button

Tap on the crop button in the bottom toolbar. The icon looks like two right angles intersecting each other.

Apple iPhone Click Crop Button

Select the rotate button found in the top-right of the display. Each time you tap it, the video will rotate 90 degrees to the right.

Apple iPhone Click Rotation Button

When you’re done rotating the video to the desired orientation, select “Done.”

Apple iPhone Click Done

The rotated video on your iPhone will be saved in the correct orientation. You can now share the video with friends and family without having to install a third-party app.

RELATED: Here’s Why iOS 13 Makes Me Want an iPhone

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How to Use Chrome’s Picture-in-Picture Mode to Play Local Videos

Google Chrome Picture-in-Picture Local Videos

The Picture-in-Picture (PiP) extension for Google Chrome lets you watch videos on the internet in PiP mode. However, if you want to watch a video from your local drive, you can use Chrome to play it in a PiP window.

For this guide, you can use either the built-in PiP mode or the official Chrome extension. If you haven’t already, head over to the Chrome web store and install the PiP extension to continue.

RELATED: How to Enable Picture-in-Picture on Chrome

Note: Not all video file formats are supported for playback in Google Chrome. However, Chrome supports WebM and MP4 formats natively, though some MP4 files may fail to open due to different types of codecs.

For this guide, we’ll be using Windows as the operating system. The process should work identically on all desktop platforms including macOS, Linux, and Chrome OS.

For Google’s PiP extension to work with files stored locally on your computer, you have to grant permission to the extension to access a file’s URL. Right-click the extension’s icon located in the toolbar and then select “Manage Extensions.”

Right-click the extension's icon, and then click "Manage extensions."

Scroll down until you see “Allow Access to File URLs” and toggle the switch to the “On” position.

Scroll down until you see "Allow access to file URLs," and then toggle it to the On position.

Next, navigate to the folder of the video you want to watch in Chrome. Right-click the video, point to “Open With,” and then click “Google Chrome.”

Right-click the video, hover over "Open with," and then choose "Google Chrome" from the list provided.

If you don’t see Chrome as a suggestion, click “Choose Another App” from the context menu that opens. From the list of apps, select “Google Chrome” and then click “OK.”

If you don't see it in the list, click "Choose another app," click "Google Chrome" from the window that opens, and then click "OK."

Alternatively, you can drag the video file directly into a new tab and Chrome will open the video automatically.

Alternatively, just drag the video file into a new tab of Chrome and it will open automatically.

After the video opens, click on the PiP extension icon, and the video will pop out on top of all other windows in a mini-player.

Click the PiP extension icon to enable PiP mode.

If you aren’t using the Chrome extension and instead want to use the built-in PiP feature, right-click the video, and then click “Picture in Picture.”

Alternatively, if you don't want to install the extension, right-click the video, and then click "picture in picture" from the context menu.

Just as with any other video in PiP mode, you can move the player by dragging it anywhere on the screen.

After you finish the video, either click the “X” in the mini-player window to close it or select the box and arrow icon at the bottom left of the player to return to the tab where the video was playing.

Done with the video? Click the 'X' in the top corner of PiP mode to close the video and return to the tab where it's playing.

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The 5 Best Ring Lights for Selfies and Videos

If you plan on becoming a professional YouTuber, Twitch streamer, or if you just want to take fantastic selfies, you’ll need a ring light. All of the high-quality videos you watch likely utilize a ring light behind the scenes.

You won’t have to pay a fortune for these lights. With a small investment, you can achieve the same bright environment for your photos and videos.

What Is a Ring Light?

When you watch YouTube videos (especially makeup tutorials), do you notice that the person on camera has a halo shape reflected in their eyes? That’s how you can tell that they’re using a ring light.

There’s a reason that so many YouTubers add this type of light to their videos—this simple light results in a vast improvement in quality. Not only do these lights allow for detailed film footage and photographs, but they let you adjust the color and temperature of the light with ease.

Quite a few variations of ring lights exist, but its concept remains the same. Ring lights are designed to fit outside of the camera. The camera sits in the center of the ring, providing the perfect balance of light for videos or pictures.

Using the following ring lights in your videos or photos will instantly boost the look and feel of your content.

Neweer Ring Light Kit

Neweer Ring Light Kit

Buy Now On Amazon

Place your camera inside Neweer’s Ring Light Kit, and experience 55 watts of power from the 18-inch light. You can choose to use a camera or your smartphone with this light, as it comes with an adapter that fits both. Adjust the light to suit your needs by experimenting with the dimness and brightness of the light.

This ring light kit also comes with several accessories to complement the light. A carrying case, charger, tripod, and light stand give you everything you need during a shoot. The kit also contains a white and orange filter, depending on whether you want to warm or cool vibe in your content.

Auxiwa Clip On Selfie Ring Light

Auxiwa Clip On Selfie Ring Light

Buy Now On Amazon

The flash on your phone is way too harsh—it shows every single detail on your face, and doesn’t make for a flattering selfie. If you want to take better pictures of yourself, the Auxiwa Clip On Selfie Ring Light is the way to go. This light isn’t ideal for professional videos, but it’s still a great way to take selfies.

Clip the ring light around the front or rear camera, and you won’t even have to worry about it creating scratches. The light is built with a sponge that prevents any nicks to your device. Plus, if you’re in a particularly dark area, you can lighten up your photo using its three brightness settings.

Unlike some other smartphone ring lights, the Auxiwa Clip-On Light doesn’t require batteries. You can recharge your light with the included USB cord.

UBeesize Selfie Ring Light

UBeesize Selfie Ring Light

Buy Now On Amazon

You might hesitate to invest in a ring light when you’re on a budget, but you can still afford a decent light without paying over the odds. This UBeesize Selfie Ring Light is small, but it’s still powerful and comes with plenty of accessories. Choose from three different temperatures (white, warm yellow, and warm white), and try out each color’s 11 brightness settings.

The 8-inch light attaches to a tripod that you can adjust from 17.5 inches tall all the way to 51 inches. Better yet, you can even use the tripod as a selfie stick. Easily attach your phone to the tripod using the kit’s smartphone holder. This rotatable holder fits most smartphones, including the latest iPhone, Samsung, HTC, and LG models.

Since the UBeesize light is USB powered, you can start it up by attaching it to any USB port. It also comes with a Bluetooth remote control, making it easy to take photos from a distance.

Pixel Ring Light With Wireless Remote

Pixel Ring Light With Wireless Remote

Buy Now On Amazon

Although the Pixel Ring Light Kit may have a higher (but not unaffordable) price tag, it’s worth it if you want to film high-quality videos. This light is larger than the others on this list, providing a 19-inch diameter of light.

You don’t have to fiddle with temperature filters when using the Pixel Light—it adjusts from warm to cool with the touch of a button. The convenient Bluetooth remote turns your camera on and off, and allows you to adjust the brightness and temperature of the light.

The kit also comes with a light stand, and can hold smartphones, iPods, or a professional camera. While the light stand can fit most models of smartphones and DSLR cameras, the tablet holder is only compatible with any iPad that’s seven to nine inches long. Such versatility makes the Pixel Ring Light the best choice for professional use.

Trumagine Dimmable Ring Light

Trumagine Dimmable Ring Light

Buy Now On Amazon

The Trumagine Ring Light has everything a beauty vlogger needs. Its diameter is only six inches long, but it still has powerful features that you can use in makeup or hair videos.

Like the Pixel Ring Light, you don’t need to use physical filters to change the light’s temperature. You can easily switch between white light, natural light, and warm light modes—each setting allows you to adjust the brightness from zero to 100 percent.

If you’re filming makeup tutorials, you might struggle to find the perfect placement for your mirror. The Trumagine Ring Light has you covered, as it comes with a double-sided mirror attached to the light. With the included tripod, you can tilt the light downwards, upwards, or sideways to shine light at any angle.

Brighten Up Your Videos With a Ring Light

If you don’t have the proper lighting, viewers won’t want to watch your videos, or interact with your photos. Darkness and improper lighting is a distraction and takes away from your quality content. Making the small investment into a ring light can make your videos that much better.

Aren’t ready to spend the cash on a ring light yet? Learn how to make your own LED ring light for YouTube videos

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