How do I send GIFs in WhatsApp on iPhone?

WhatsApp is one of our favourite ways to keep in touch with friends around the world. Sharing messages and photos for free is always welcome, and now you can also include GIFs alongside Apple's Live photos and short video clips. In this quick tutorial, we'll show you how to easily add a splash of action to your WhatsApp conversations.

On a related note, you may be interested to read our collection of brilliant Live Photo tips, and our tutorial showing How to read WhatsApp messages without the sender knowing.

Sending Giphy GIFs on WhatsApp

The easiest way to send GIFs in WhatsApp is to use the built-in GIF function, first introduced to the service in 2017. The function allows you to search the vast library of GIFs available on Giphy and send animated clips without having to save them on your iPhone first.

To search for a Giphy GIF to send, tap the Stickers icon to the right of the text entry field in your WhatsApp chat. At the bottom of the window, tap the GIF icon. From here you can browse from a number of preset categories, or if you've got a specific GIF in mind, tap the magnifying glass in the bottom-left to keyword search.

Once you've found the perfect GIF, tap it and then tap the send icon to share it with your friends.

Converting videos to GIFs

WhatsApp already allows you to send existing videos but you can also convert them to GIFs if you wish. The only restriction on this is that the GIF can't be longer than six seconds in length, so videos exceeding that duration won't offer the conversion option.

Sending a video

To send a video you need to start a message then select the plus icon in the bottom left corner of the screen. A pop-up menu appears from which you need to select Photo & Video Library. Now select any video and press the Send button (a blue circle with a paper aeroplane inside).

How to send GIFs in WhatsApp

Sending a video as a GIF

If you prefer to send the file as a GIF then follow the same steps as above but be sure to select a video that's no longer than six seconds in length. When you've chosen one you'll see an option just beneath the timeline at the top of the screen which has a camera highlighted in blue with GIF to the right of it.

How to send GIFs in WhatApp

Tapping on the GIF option will immediately start the video playing on a loop. By dragging either end of the timeline bar you can set the start and stop points of the clip. There are also options across the top for cropping, adding emojis, text, or drawing on the image. When you're happy with your creation, tap the Send button and you're done.

Sending Live Photos

Owners of an iPhone 6S, 6S Plus or later can also send their Live photos to friends on WhatsApp. They'll need to be converted to GIFs first though so that users of other smartphones will be able to open them.

To do this follow the steps above for sending a video but when you locate the Live photo press hard on it so that it pops out. Slide upwards and you'll see a menu appear which includes the option to Select as GIF.

How to send GIFs in WhatsApp

Select this and then you'll be able to include it in your message.

Sending existing GIFs

Over time it's possible that you'll accrue a number of GIFs in your camera roll due to them being included in messages you've received from other people. These are very easy to attach to new messages thanks to a dedicated GIF search feature.

To find GIFs start a new message in WhatsApp then press the plus icon in the bottom left corner, select Photo & Video Library, then in the bottom left corner you'll see the Search icon with GIF next to it.

How to send GIFs in WhatsApp

Tap this and you'll be presented with a list of the available GIFs. Select one and then you'll have access to the same editing tools that include the start and finish points, cropping, and annotation. Tap the send button when you're finished and within moments your friends will be enjoying your video vignette.

Sending GIFs from the web

If you've found a GIF online that you want to include in a message then that's easy to do as well. You can use dedicated sites such as Giphy or just look for them on social media feeds or through the normal web searches.

How to send GIFs on WhatsApp

When you find one you like, press and hold the screen until you see an option to Copy the image. Do this then go to WhatsApp, start a new message, then tap and hold the text field until the Paste option appears. Tap this and you should see the GIF appear, complete with the editing tools we covered previously. Make your amends and then dispatch it forthwith to your chums.

If you'd like to send GIFs out through other means, take a look at How to send GIFs on iPhone, which is a broader tutorial.