How to Crop Videos on iPhone

Make movies like a pro on the iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch

A woman on a balcony cropping a video on her iPhone smartphone.

Hero Images / Getty Images

Crop videos on iOS devices before sharing them on Twitter, Instagram, and other social media apps.

Instructions in this article apply to iPhone, iPod Touch, and iPad devices with iOS 11 and later.

What Does Cropping Mean?

Cropping refers to the process of selecting an area within an image or video and deleting everything outside of it. This process almost always results in changing the size of the source media, and it can sometimes also affect the aspect ratio. Practical uses for cropping include removing other people from selfies or turning a widescreen video into a square-shape.

What's the Best Video Cropping App on iPhone?

Several video editors for iOS devices support cropping, but the best is Video Crop because it's free and user-friendly.

How to Crop a Video on iPhone With Video Crop

To crop videos on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch:

  1. Download Video Crop from the App Store.

  2. Open Video Crop on your iPhone, iPod touch, or iPad.

  3. Tap the crop icon in the middle of the screen. You're presented with a list of the video files you recorded on your iPhone.

  4. Tap the video you want to crop to play it, then tap the checkmark in the upper-right corner.

    Selecting a video in Video Crop on an iPhone
  5. Tap and drag one of the corners of the box to begin cropping your video, and tap the center of the box to move it.

    Preset aspect ratios are available along the bottom of the screen if you need a specific size for your video.

  6. Tap the button in the upper-right corner to render your cropped video.

  7. Watch your cropped video within the app. If you're happy with it, tap Save to store it to your iPhone, or tap More to share it.

    Saving a cropped video will not overwrite the original.

    Cropping and saving a video in Video Crop for iOS
  8. When you're finished, tap the Home icon in the upper-right corner to return to the app's welcome screen.

How to Crop a Video in iOS 13 and iPadOS

In iOS 13 for the iPhone and iPadOS, Apple introduced native video cropping to its mobile devices. The process is similar to cropping photos in earlier versions of the operating system. If you're used to doing that, the new feature will be quick to pick up.

Here's how to do it:

  1. Open the Photos app.

  2. On the Albums tab, scroll down to the Media Types section and select Videos.

  3. Tap the video you want to crop.

  4. Select Edit.

    Edit button on a video in iOS
  5. Tap the Crop button at the bottom of the screen.

  6. Use the handles on the edges of the video to remove the areas of the video you don't want.

  7. Select Done to save your changes.

    How to crop a video in iOS 13

Is Cropping the Same as Trimming?

The terms cropping and trimming are frequently used interchangeably, but these tasks are technically very different. While cropping changes what you see when looking at a video file, trimming edits the video's length or runtime.

For example, trim a video from one minute to 30 seconds, but crop a video to make it fill the entire screen when used as an Instagram Story. Trimming makes a video shorter; cropping changes how much of the video you see at any one time.

Why Should I Crop a Video?

There are several reasons you may want to crop a video on your iPhone, iPod touch, or iPad:

  • To remove an object or person: If you filmed an amazing video, but there's someone in the background who's ruining the shot, crop them out as you would with a photo.
  • To optimize the video for social media feeds: Many people crop widescreen videos into a square aspect ratio before sharing on social media apps such as Twitter and Facebook. Square videos appear larger in social media feeds and are more visible on small screens.
  • To optimize for Instagram Stories: Widescreen videos either appear small in Instagram Stories or focus on the middle of the screen when zoomed in. Cropping a video before uploading it to Instagram ensures the video focuses on what you want.

Why Should I Crop a Video on iPhone?

When you record and save a video on your iPhone, cropping the video on an iPhone is more convenient and time-efficient than transferring the video to a computer for editing. Video editing apps on iOS devices are also easier to use and feature streamlined export options that require little technical know-how.

While it's easier to edit an iPhone video on an iPhone, you can send it to another device and edit it there. Most video editing apps support iPhone videos.