iCloud Photo Library for iPhone & iPad

The Photos app for iOS, included with every iPhone & iPad, is the best place to keep all your precious digital pictures and videos. With the optional iCloud Photo Library feature, all your photos & videos are kept safe on Apple’s servers. Every picture stored on your Mac, iPhone or iPad is compared to the ones already in your iCloud Photo Library. Any new images are copied to the cloud, and the photos already in the cloud are added to the Mac or device. You might think you’ll run out of space… but iCloud Photo Library can help there, too. You have the option of optimizing storage on your Mac & devices. And you’ll never need to plug your device into your Mac to import or sync photos.

Enabling iCloud Photo Library on iOS

  1. Sign into iCloud if you haven’t already. You’ll need to use the same iCloud account on all your Macs & devices to sync photos.
  2. Open the Settings app, scroll down and tap iCloud.
  3. Tap Photos and turn on iCloud Photo Library.
  4. Choose Optimize iPhone (or iPad) Storage. You’ll still have access to all your photos & videos, but you’ll use far less space. Lower-resolution copies are stored on this device, and when you enlarge or edit a photo, the high-res version is downloaded as needed. The original high-res images are stored safely in the cloud.
  5. Or choose Download Originals. If you have enough space, the full-quality images are stored on your device.
  6. If possible, keep your device turned on and plugged into power to upload photos as quickly as possible. It’s OK to switch apps or put the screen to sleep.

Learn more about the Photos app and enable iCloud Photo Library on your Mac. See also iMore’s iCloud Photo Library Ultimate Guide.

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