I have converted some recorded audio (sermons from our church) to MP3 using Audacity. I uploaded them to Google drive so we can send links to people who missed a service but when I try to test them by playing within the browser (simply double-click the file) I get an error.

I'm sure Google drive supports direct playback of MP3 files in this manner so how can I find out what the problem is to ensure I use the correct settings? Maybe Google's simple player only supports a subset of bitrates or something? They play fine on my local machine but a direct link that just plays may be easier for many of our listeners than downloading I think.

  • check your file with mediaarea.net/en/MediaInfo and compare it with info of a file that plays well
    – user0
    May 25, 2019 at 18:44
  • Maybe there was a problem and only Google can fix it. Send them your feedback by using Google Feedback May 26, 2019 at 3:03
  • 1
    We are having the same issue and it appears that we are definitely not the only ones. It seems that this is a Google Drive problem. I have not found a solution yet. Busy going through many question threads. Did you ever manage to solve this problem?
    – Tracey
    Feb 12, 2020 at 10:54
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    Just faced the same issue. I know for certain the audio file is valid because [1] - it plays on VLC [2] - Google Drive actually played the file the first time i double clicked it. Then when I've tried playing it again it says it can't. Apr 28, 2020 at 6:57

3 Answers 3


You may have to enable "third party cookies" in the Security & Privacy preferences (settings) in your browser (e.g., Chrome). This worked for me.


Sometimes Google Drive erroneously believes that too many people have downloaded or listened to your file within a 24-hour period. Try using the DOWNLOAD icon on your file, and see if you get an error message to that effect, like so: "Sorry.  Too many people"


To answer my own question, well it is not exactly an answer but I realised I only have this problem when I'm logged in. If I open the link in a private browsing window, things work as expected.

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