Can I just store photos on iCloud and not the iPhone?

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by djneils98, Jul 13, 2015.

  1. djneils98 macrumors newbie

    Jul 13, 2015
    I'm low on space on my 16gb iPhone 6.
    I have my entire photo library on iCloud and have the phone linked to iCloud photos and I have the optimise iPhone storage setting enabled in iCloud. Photos are still taking over 2gig of space.
    What I would like is this:
    When I take a photo it is saved onto the phone until it gets copied onto iCloud photos at which point it is deleted from the phone.
    is that possible or is there any way of getting my photos less than 2gig? when I try to delete the phone photos it warns me that i'm deleting the iCloud version.
    Even just being able to manually delete photos on the phone without deleting the iCloud version would be good.
    thanks in advance for any tips
  2. risk235 macrumors member

    Oct 17, 2011
    I saw this posted somewhere else and recently did it with my wife's iPhone. Click on the pics and select iCloud Photo Sharing. Then click on Shared Album and select New Shared Album. Name your new album. Next it will ask you if you want to share the pics with someone. If you don't want to share just hit Next to leave it blank. Finally it has the option to post a comment. Just ignore that and hit Post. Now your pics will be in the cloud. Each album can hold a maximum of 5000 photos and videos combined. Once you hit that limit just create a new album to start again with 5000 for that album and so on.
    So with my wife's phone I transfer all her pics to my computer and saved them to a SD card. I then deleted her pics from her phone. She now has free space plus she is still able to view her old pics under the Shared tab in Photos. She can still send those pics via text, email, etc. Another option is to download Google Photos.
  3. mattopotamus macrumors G5


    Jun 12, 2012
    This is pretty much the ninja answer. The straight up answer is no, no you cannot. iCloud drive does not work like dropbox or your typical cloud storage. It pushes the photos to all of your devices, and that is the intent.
  4. djneils98 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jul 13, 2015
    thanks for taking the time to help!
    when you say "Click on the pics and select iCloud Photo Sharing"
    I currently have 2100 pics and can't see a way of selecting them all in 1 go.
    you do mean to do this in the iPhone photo view app don't you?
  5. andyw715 macrumors 65816

    Oct 25, 2013
    iOS 8 (maybe 7?) you can drill down to the "Moments" aggregation of photos in the iOS photo app, from there if you press Select at the top right you can then press "Select" at the moment level which will select all the photos in that moment. And then do that for all the Moments.

    It save a little time vs selecting each photo one by one
  6. Deadeyeshark macrumors regular


    Aug 1, 2011
    I've not tried this, so I'm not sure if it will work, will going into Geneal>Usage>Manage Storage and then deleting your photos from here just delete the full size resolution photos from your device without affecting those in the cloud?
  7. risk235 macrumors member

    Oct 17, 2011
    When you are in your Moments screen you tap Select in the upper right hand. Now it will tell you Select Items on the top. Your pics should be in sections by the date you took them. Just tap Select on the right of each section that you want to do iCloud Photo Sharing. Once you are done selecting you tap the share arrow button on the lower left. That will bring up the screen to share via AirDrop, Message, iCloud Photo Sharing etc. Pick iCloud and follow the rest of the instructions in my previous post. Just a heads up. Don't try to send all your pics to iCloud at once. I tried that and it got hung. I did a section at a time. It took forever but it worked.
  8. Cmd-Z macrumors 6502


    Nov 14, 2014
    Coyote, CA
    Keep in mind that Shared Photo Streams are not full resolution. On an iPhone you can't tell but if you care about these photos and hope to save them to a computer someday, putting them into a Shared stream will lower their resolution. You can prove this by linking a computer to the Shared Stream and check the resolution vs. the original.

    Also, just because they're in a Shared stream does not mean they don't take up space on your iPhone. They won't take up as much space as if they were in Camera Roll or iCloud Photo Library, but they do occupy space.

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7 July 13, 2015