Sharing video files for iMovie use on an iPad using Dropbox and Google Drive

Featured imageNot a very catchy title, but you get the gist. One thing that has always been an issue since we began using iPads is getting videos on and off of the iPads. Since moving to the Meraki MDM solution and Apple making a few changes, it has become possible to sync district owned iPads with a computer running iTunes. This is one option for transferring videos, but is pretty time consuming if you are working with several iPads.

The other day I worked with a teacher who recorded some videos using an iPad. She then wanted the videos to be put on all of her classroom iPads so that they could be used in making an iMovie project.

Now let me start by saying the processes below are not the only ways to do this, these are just two options. It is possible to do this with the iCloud drive, but when I tried it, I felt it involved too many steps on each iPad and you had to sync all of the videos and pictures on the iPad. I believe using the OneDrive for Business App will eventually become the best way to do this since every student and staff member already has an account and storage space is unlimited. Unfortunately, the app currently can’t download videos to an iPad, it only streams them. However, this could (and hopefully will) change at any time and I’ll probably write up a post about using it when it does. The same processes below can be used for pictures as well.

Using Dropbox

Dropbox has been around a long time. So it makes sense that this app has had time to mature more than some others. Dropbox will give you 2GB of free cloud storage when you sign up. Comparatively, this is not very much, but you can earn some more by going through their tutorials and inviting friends. 2GB is not enough space for long term storage, but it may be enough for your class project and afterwards you could move the videos you want to keep from Dropbox to OneDrive for Business.

Download the Dropbox app to your iPads and sign into all of them with the same Dropbox account. You can either create an account using a computer or one of the iPads. Note: You could use multiple accounts and setup sharing, but I’m going to keep this simple.

Uploading files to Dropbox from iPad

  1. Open the Dropbox app on the iPad that your recorded the videos on
  2. At the top left of the screen you will see the word Dropbox with 3 small circles next to it. Tap the circles
  3. Choose Add Files
  4. Choose Photos

    At this point some of you clicked on “More” and noticed that you can tie in your OneDrive and/or Google Drive accounts. You are also thinking that you could have the files in OneDrive, then import them into Dropbox so they can be downloaded. I like the way you are thinking, but keep in mind currently you can only access OneDrive and not OneDrive for Business. Also keep in mind we are keeping this simple. But kudos to you. J

  5. Tap on the video or videos you want to upload.
  6. Choose Upload

The videos will now begin to upload. The amount of time this will take will depend on the number of videos and the size of the videos.

Downloading files to iPad from Dropbox

  1. Open the Dropbox app on one of the iPads you want be able to edit the videos with.
  2. In the list of files find the video you want to download and tap on it
  3. A still shot of the video should now show on the right hand side of the screen.
  4. At the top of the screen, tap on the button that looks like a square with an up arrow on the top.
  5. Choose Save Video

The video will now start to export and then it with save to your Photos area on the iPad. The amount of time this will take will depend on the size of the video. Repeat these steps for each video you want to edit. The videos will now be available for use in iMovie.

Using Google Drive

If you are a Google user, and really who isn’t in one way or another, you can upload and download videos with Google Drive. One huge advantage to using Google Drive over Dropbox is the amount of storage space. Goggle Drive gives you 15GB or free storage space. This fact alone makes me want to erase the Dropbox directions, but I’m an equal opportunity cloud storage user so I’ll let you decide.

Download the Google Drive app to your iPads and sign into all of them with the same Google account. You can either create an account using a computer or one of the iPads. Keep in mind if you create a Gmail account for use with your Google Drive account, you won’t be able to access that email at school. Goggle Drive does allow you to create an account with another email such as a school email address.

Uploading files to Google Drive from iPad

  1. Open the Google Drive app on the iPad that your recorded the videos on
  2. In the top right corner of the screen, tap the + button
  3. Choose Upload Photos or Videos
  4. Allow Google Drive access to your photos if prompted
  5. Click on All Photos
  6. Tap on the video or videos you want to upload
  7. Tap the blue square check mark.

The videos will now begin to upload. The amount of time this will take will depend on the number of videos and the size of the videos.

Downloading files to iPad from Dropbox

  1. Find the video you want to download and tap the “i” button under the video
  2. Tap on Open In. It will take several seconds after you do this before you can do step 4 because the video is being downloaded
  3. Tap on Save Video

The video will now save to your Photos area on the iPad.

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