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Sat, Jun 29, 2013 9:00 PM

Save Your Instagram Video In Your Smartphone Without Uploading

And I thought the Instagram video capturing feature is seriously awesome. It's not just another video recorder. Here's what I find (reviewed with Instagram v4.0.2):
  1. Capturing video requires you to press and hold on to the recording button, much like the "press-to-talk" walkie-talkie style.
  2. You can capture several clips to form a 15-second video.
  3. You can delete the previous clip you recorded without starting all over again.
  4. You can apply effects and watch the effects preview on-the-fly.
  5. Even if you press "Back" to exit the recording function, your clips are retained next time you return to the recording mode - as long as you do not discard the recording. This means you can potentially accumulate your clips over time before posting on Instagram.


Save the Video: Generic Method (iPhone, Android)
It didn't take long for me to explore how I could save the video file without uploading to Instagram. The sure-work method is to turn off your online connection (i.e. Flight Mode) and then initiate the upload to Instagram. Once the upload fails, delete the warning and the file is preserved in your Instagram folder.
Here's My Method: Android Devices Only
I uncovered another option that doesn't require you to fake an upload. What you do is to just stop short at the upload step (below image), press the Android "Home" button to leave the app, and then wait for about 2 minutes.
The purpose of waiting is for Instagram to process the video completely (this is done in the background without your knowledge). Then, using File Manager, browse to the Instagram video folder, located in the "Movie" folder. You will see your video there. Then, move this video to another folder. Before you do that, just playback the video to make sure it is the full video. If it's incomplete, wait for a while, and try to replay again. Chances, are, the video would be complete.
The advantage of doing this instead of the "Force Failed-Upload" method is that you can actually return to the Instagram video recording mode, re-edit your video by removing and re-recording clips or apply another effect. Then proceed to the final upload step, and return to the Instagram folder. Voila, you get a new video file that you can copy to another folder.


What About Photos?
Saving photos are less tricky than videos, at least for Android devices. On Android, once you reach the final upload step, the phone would already have saved your photo. You can safely abort the step and your photo would remain in your Instagram folder. For iPhone users, I guess you would have to use the "Force Failed-Upload" method.

It Works - For Now
I never know whether Instagram will release updates to change the way they cache their videos, but this definitely works for me with Instagram version 4.0.2. Remember to wait for a while before you save the video in your Instagram folder. Never assume it has completed processing the full video.

And if the above method no longer works, please help the community by posting your comments below, so that I can find new ways to save the video and update this post. Cheers!




Chester blogs regularly for StarHub Community and runs his own blog site at
Twitter/Instagram: @musicdiary



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47 Messages

8 y ago

For those interested to save the Instagram video onto your local/cloud storage, follow this tutorial:

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