How to Transfer Photos from Mac or Windows PC to iPhone or iPad

How do you transfer photos or videos from Mac or Windows PC to iPhone and iPad? Let’s walk through this easy guide to move all your photos from your computer to iOS device or vice-versa.

Transferring photos or videos from macOS or Windows to iOS device or vice-versa is no longer a herculean task. With several options available to transport files back and forth, you would never run out of choices.

Whether it’s ultra-modern AirDrop, iCloud, iTunes or Dropbox, you have more options now than ever before. Personally, I prefer AirDrop and Dropbox for being exceptionally user-friendly. Let’s go through this complete guide to transfer your photos effortlessly from computer to iPhone and iPad!

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How to Transfer Photos from Computer to iPhone or iPad

How to Transfer Photos from Mac or Windows PC to iPhone and iPad

How to Transfer Photos from Mac to iPhone and iPad via AirDrop

One of my favorite mediums to transfer photos from macOS to iOS is AirDrop. It lets you move batches of photos from your Mac to your iOS device with utmost ease.

Step #1. First off, you need to click on photos you wish to transfer in the Finder window.

Step #2. Next, click on AirDrop from the side menu.

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Step #3. Now, simply drag your selected items to the iPhone option in AirDrop.

Transfer Photos from Mac to iPhone Using AirDrop

Step #4. Next, tap on Accept on your iOS device.

How to Use Photos for Mac to Transfer Photos to iPhone

Step #1. Open Photos app on your Mac.

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Step #2. Next, click on Photos menu at the top left of the screen.

Step #3. Now, you need to choose Preferences.

Click on Preferences in Photos App on Mac

Step #4. Select iCloud and then check the box next to iCloud Photo Library.

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Enable iCloud Photo Library on Mac

Now, you would have to wait until all of your photos are synced with your iOS device.

How to Transfer Photos from Mac to iPhone and iPad via iCloud Photo Sharing

So what you are still using the discontinued iPhoto or Aperture on your old Mac? You can still transfer your favorite photos from your computer to your iOS device.

Step #1. Open Settings app on your iOS device → Tap on Photos and Camera.

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Tap on Settings then Photos on iPhone

Step #2. Turn on iCloud Photo Library and iCloud Photo Sharing.

Enable iCloud Photo Library on iPhone

Step #3. On your Mac, you need to open Photos App.

Step #4. Now, you need to click on the photos you wish to upload and then click on Share icon from the top right the corner.

Step #5. Next, click on iCloud Photo Sharing.

Share Photos from Mac to iPhone using iCloud Photo Sharing

How to Transfer Photos from Mac or Windows to iPhone via iCloud

Note: The iCloud uploader supports only certain file types like JPG files through the web.

Step #1. In order to transfer photos from your computer to iPhone via iCloud, you need to enable iCloud Photo Library on your devices. Next, go to

Step #2. Now, click on Photos icon.

Click on Photos in iCloud on Mac

Step #3. Click on Upload at the top right corner.

Move Mac Photos to iPhone using iCloud

Step #4. Next, you need to choose the images you want to upload.

You should see the processing bar at the bottom to upload your selected images.

How to Transfer Photos from Mac or Windows PC to iPhone via iTunes

iTunes remains one of the most viable mediums to transfer your pics from your computer to your iOS device.

Step #1. Starting off, connect your iOS device to Mac. Then, launch iTunes.

Step #2. Now, select your iOS device in the top bar.

Step #3. Next, you need to click on the Photos tab.

Step #4. Click the checkbox next to Sync Photos.

(Note: In case you are using external folders on your computer to store pictures, you have the option to sync your iOS device from that specific folder. You need to select “Choose folder” from the drop-down menu and click on the folder. Click to sync All folders or Selected folders.)

You have to click the iPhotoPhotos, or Aperture from the “Copy photos from” drop-down menu. Click the options as per your need.

Step #5. Click Sync at the bottom right corner.

Your iPhone will now copy all the photos you selected.

Other Viable Options

You can also use Dropbox, Google Drive or other cloud-based services to easily transfer your services from one platform to the other seamlessly.

Like this article? Share your valuable feedback with us in the comment, on Facebook, Twitter, and Google Plus. Also, make sure to download our app on your iDevice.

Dhvanesh Adhiya
Dhvanesh Adhiya is our editor-in-chief and reviewer who takes care of He is passionate for wonderful apps that change the way your iPhone interacts in your life.


  1. Hi, how about iAny Manager? One of my friend recommend this tool for me said that it is very helpful to transfer data from PC to iOS device, have you tried this? Please tell me, thx!

  2. i am unable to transfer my photos from my iphone 5s to my window 7 & window 8 laptop after installation of ios8.1. my normal routine is use the USB wire and connect to the laptop, and usually in the DCIM folders, i will have more than 15 sub folders, but after the ios update, i am only left with 1 sub folder shown when is connected to the computer, and the photos in the folder are from the old time, not the recent photos.

    what should i do? i cant roll back to the previous ios right? is there any apps that allows me to upload the photos in their original size and for me to download in their original sizes? as in not the compressed size?

    please help, thank

  3. I was given an iphone by my work. I am not an Apple person and I hate itunes. I refuse to put itunes back on my PC. Is there another way to get pics on and off of the iphone6?

    • Good instructions even better than the official tutorial from apple. If you need to another easy way to transfer photos from computer to iPhone/iPad/iPod without using iTunes, you can use iPhone transfer programs, such as FonePaw iOS Transfer, SP,WS etc.

  4. iTunes is really annoying when it comes to syncing photos. I am afraid of deleting all my pictures. Instead, I’m using AirMore to transfer photos from computer to iPhone. The process is much simpler for me. Open the browser on my computer. Scan the QR code on its webpage to connect. Bang. I am able to transfer all the data between iPhone and PC with ease.

  5. If you really don’t like to use iTunes, you can use FonePaw iOS Transfer to import photos from computer to iPhone. It’s a good assistant for iOS users to transfer, add or delete photos and more media files on iPhone/iPad.

  6. I thinks iTunes is great tool to manage iPhone data, but it sucks to transfer photos from computer to iPhone. I would rather to use 3rd party tool!

  7. For some reason, i can only sync one folder to my iPod. If I try to add another folder, it has to remove the previous folder.

  8. But does anyone know a simple solution to transferring photos from PC to ipad and transferring the edited version of the photo? I have travel photos that I have rotated and sorted and the ipad will not receive the transfers in their edited version. FRUSTRATING. I have learnt how to edit the EXIF date but not the edited photo.


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