Learn how to transfer photos and videos from iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch to your Mac or Windows computer. We will also show how to use iCloud Photos to make photos available on all your devices.
Specify a place to save photos and videos
First, choose a storage location for your collection of photos and videos. You can make them available on all your devices using the iCloud Photos feature. You can also store them locally on a Mac or Windows computer.
Using iCloud Photos, you can access photos and videos on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, Mac, Apple TV, iCloud.com, and even on a Windows computer. Your new snapshots are automatically added to iCloud Photos, and any organizational changes or edits are synced across all your devices.
- Make sure the software on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch, Mac, or Apple TV is up to date.
- Set up iCloud on all your devices. If you are using a Windows computer, download iCloud for Windows. Make sure all of your devices are signed in to iCloud using the same Apple ID.
- Make sure your device is connected to a Wi-Fi network.
To enable iCloud Photos, do the following:
- On iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch, go to Settings > [your name] > iCloud > Photos and turn on iCloud Photos.
- On a Mac, select System Preferences > iCloud Click the Options button next to Photos and select iCloud Photos.
- On Apple TV, go to the Settings menu > “Accounts” > iCloud > “ICloud Photo.”
- On a Windows computer, follow the steps to set up iCloud Photos.
If you have already synced photos on your iOS device via iTunes, and then turned on the iCloud Photos function on it, the message “Photos and videos synced with iTunes will be deleted.” Photos and videos synchronized with the computer will remain on the computer, but will be deleted from the iOS device.
To copy these photos and videos back to your iOS device, turn on iCloud Photos on your Mac or Windows computer. After that, photos from your computer will be downloaded to iCloud, and you can open them on any of your devices. After you turn on iCloud Photos, all photos are saved in iCloud, and you can open them in the Photos program on your Mac or in a folder on a Windows computer.
You can also get more help on iCloud Photos for your Mac or Windows computer.
Photos and videos stored in iCloud Photos take up storage in iCloud. Before you enable iCloud Photos, make sure iCloud has enough space to store your entire collection. You can determine the required volume, and then go to the expanded tariff plan, if necessary.
Import to Mac
You can use the Photos app to import photos from your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch to your Mac without using iCloud Photos. You can also use these steps to import images from digital cameras or SD cards.
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- Make sure your Mac is using the latest version of iTunes. To import photos to a Mac, iTunes 12.5.1 or later is required.
- Connect your iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, or digital camera to your Mac using a USB cable. If you are using an SD card, insert it into the SD slot of your Mac or connect it using an SD card reader.
- This may require you to unlock your iOS device with a password. The iOS device may also display a “Trust this computer” warning. To continue, click Trust.
- On a Mac, Photos will open automatically. Otherwise, open the “Photo” program.
- In the “Photos” program, the “Import” screen opens, where all the photos and videos that are on the connected device are displayed. If the Import screen does not automatically open, click the Import tab at the top of the Photos application, or click the device name in the sidebar.
- To import part of the photo library, click the photos you want, then click “Import Selected”. To import all new photos, click Import All New Photos.
- You can then disconnect the device from the Mac. If you imported photos from an SD card or other USB device, remove the device safely first.
On macOS High Sierra or later, imported photos appear in the Import album of the Photos program. If you are using an earlier version of macOS, you will find them in the Last Import album.
Photos and videos synced from your computer to your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch using iTunes cannot be imported back to your computer.
Import to PC
You can import photos to a PC computer by connecting a device to it and using the Photos program in Windows:
- Make sure your Windows computer is using the latest version of iTunes. To import photos to a PC, iTunes 12.5.1 or later is required.
- Connect your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch to your Windows computer using a USB cable.
- This may require you to unlock your iOS device with a password.
- The iOS device may also display a “Trust this computer” warning. To continue, click Trust or Allow.
Then follow the steps in the following Microsoft Knowledge Base articles to import photos into Windows Photos:
After importing video from an iOS device to a PC, some videos may have the wrong orientation in Windows Photos. By adding these videos to iTunes, you can play them in the correct orientation.
If you have iCloud Photos enabled, you need to download the original full-size versions of your photos on your iPhone before importing them to your Windows computer. Find out how to do it.
Photos and videos synced from your computer to your iOS device via iTunes cannot be imported back to your computer.
Transfer photos from a computer to an iOS device
There are several ways to transfer photos and videos from your computer to your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch:
- Use iCloud Photos and Photos for macOS or iCloud for Windows to securely store and sync photos on all your devices.
- Use AirDrop to wirelessly send photos and videos from your Mac to your iOS device. This is a simple, fast, but Mac-only way to send multiple objects. When you send photos and videos to your iOS device via AirDrop, they are displayed in the Photos program on the device.
- Sync photos manually using iTunes. Each time you sync your iOS device using iTunes, the photos and videos on this iOS device are updated according to the albums on your computer.
- Back up all files, including photos and videos, to an external hard drive using Time Machine
- Import photos and videos from a drive, such as a hard drive or SD card, into the Photos app for macOS
- Import photos on film using a scanner and Image Capture
- Transfer photos from an Android device to an iOS device using Move to iOS
- Import images directly to a folder on a Mac using Image Capture
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