Transfer live photos from iPhone to Mac

JCarmona

macrumors member
Original poster
May 23, 2014
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54
Hi,

How can I transfer live photos from my iPhone to Mac (latest OS in both devices).

Thanks!
 

MCAsan

macrumors 601
Jul 9, 2012
4,528
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Atlanta
Plug you iPhone into the Mac. Start Photos on the Mac. It should see your iPhone and allow you to copy/move all photos and movies to Photos.

Is that what you want to do?
 

Ledgem

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Jan 18, 2008
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Hawaii, USA
@MCAsan gave you the right answer. Just to expand on it, iCloud Photostream (the default) will share photos between devices, but the "live" portions don't upload through there. You'll need to connect your phone to your computer and "import new" photos to get them. Photos does seem to be smart enough to simply add the "live" portions to the photos, rather than creating duplicates (which is admittedly an issue I had once, but I suspect it was a case of macOS and iOS not both being the latest versions).
 
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JCarmona

macrumors member
Original poster
May 23, 2014
93
54
Plug you iPhone into the Mac. Start Photos on the Mac. It should see your iPhone and allow you to copy/move all photos and movies to Photos.

Is that what you want to do?
Thanks!
Does that also transfer the 3 seconds video of a live photo?

With AirDrop I can transfer the JPGs, but not the videos that comprise the live photo.

Thanks!
[doublepost=1546943458][/doublepost]Thanks!
 

Ledgem

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Jan 18, 2008
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Really, you still need to physically connect to get all your types of photos off?
I'd guess that if you use the 'photos in the cloud' (I can't recall the official designation) option then you wouldn't. I can't speak from experience, though, as my iCloud storage is too small for my photo library, so I've never tried it.
 

harriska2

macrumors 65816
Mar 16, 2011
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Oregon
I'd guess that if you use the 'photos in the cloud' (I can't recall the official designation) option then you wouldn't. I can't speak from experience, though, as my iCloud storage is too small for my photo library, so I've never tried it.
There should be a better way. Hope Apple realizes this.
 

0970373

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Mar 15, 2008
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Hi,

How can I transfer live photos from my iPhone to Mac (latest OS in both devices).
It transfers just fine into Photos via iCloud. You don't have to connect your phone via cable. I'm not sure what other folks here are talking about but you absolutely can sync your iOS and Mac live photos via iCloud Photos assuming you have the most up to date versions.
 
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harriska2

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Mar 16, 2011
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Oregon
It transfers just fine into Photos via iCloud. You don't have to connect your phone via cable. I'm not sure what other folks here are talking about but you absolutely can sync your iOS and Mac live photos via iCloud Photos assuming you have the most up to date versions.
Does that allow one to delete off the cloud once moved from cloud to the laptop/desktop? For those of us who just have the 5gb free plan ...
 

0970373

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Mar 15, 2008
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Does that allow one to delete off the cloud once moved from cloud to the laptop/desktop? For those of us who just have the 5gb free plan ...
In that case just move it to a Shared Photo album and then delete from your camera roll. It'll sync back to Photos just fine as well. No, it doesn't use up your iCloud storage space. But feel free to read more here.
 

harriska2

macrumors 65816
Mar 16, 2011
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Oregon
In that case just move it to a Shared Photo album and then delete from your camera roll. It'll sync back to Photos just fine as well. No, it doesn't use up your iCloud storage space. But feel free to read more here.
I can see shared images on my iPhone and iPad but can't on the Mac mini - which I just checked is set up with Shared Photo album. I'll have to see how to get it to show (I wonder if I accidentally deleted).

UPDATE: I moved the system photo library to an external drive and needed to select that as the "system photo library" and iCloud shared photos suddenly showed up. Now I can use that to move my pictures to the Mac.

Thanks for the tips. As a newbie, this stuff isn't always obvious.

SECOND UPDATE: This is super slick. I drag all photos from my iPhone and iPad into Shared Album. Then I delete all the photos on each device. I see the photos on my Mac under Shared Albums. I drag them to a folder on my Mac because I used referenced files. I then drag each image or group of images into the correct album and wallah, I don't have to connect my mobile devices to the desktop to clear them of images.

You can store up to 5000 images in your shared folder without it affecting your free (or paid) iCloud storage.

Without a doubt super cool.
 
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Ledgem

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Jan 18, 2008
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It transfers just fine into Photos via iCloud. You don't have to connect your phone via cable. I'm not sure what other folks here are talking about but you absolutely can sync your iOS and Mac live photos via iCloud Photos assuming you have the most up to date versions.
The default sync option that most people are coming across is Photostream. Photostream uploads and stores your photos for the past 30 days, but the LiveView aspect of a photo does not transfer via Photostream. iCloud Photos is something different, and for those of us with larger photos libraries (mine is around 80 GB as I have videos and thousands of photos taken with a camera) you'll either need to purchase or make space on iCloud for it. For those who don't want to purchase more iCloud storage space, or who can't afford to use their iCloud storage space for their photos library, plugging the phone in and having Photos import photos is the fastest, cheapest, and easiest way to get the "live" portion of your photos onto your computer.
 

0970373

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Mar 15, 2008
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I can see shared images on my iPhone and iPad but can't on the Mac mini - which I just checked is set up with Shared Photo album. I'll have to see how to get it to show (I wonder if I accidentally deleted).

UPDATE: I moved the system photo library to an external drive and needed to select that as the "system photo library" and iCloud shared photos suddenly showed up. Now I can use that to move my pictures to the Mac.

Thanks for the tips. As a newbie, this stuff isn't always obvious.

SECOND UPDATE: This is super slick. I drag all photos from my iPhone and iPad into Shared Album. Then I delete all the photos on each device. I see the photos on my Mac under Shared Albums. I drag them to a folder on my Mac because I used referenced files. I then drag each image or group of images into the correct album and wallah, I don't have to connect my mobile devices to the desktop to clear them of images.

You can store up to 5000 images in your shared folder without it affecting your free (or paid) iCloud storage.

Without a doubt super cool.
Glad it all worked out for you. It's a great feature.
[doublepost=1548305053][/doublepost]
The default sync option that most people are coming across is Photostream. Photostream uploads and stores your photos for the past 30 days, but the LiveView aspect of a photo does not transfer via Photostream. iCloud Photos is something different, and for those of us with larger photos libraries (mine is around 80 GB as I have videos and thousands of photos taken with a camera) you'll either need to purchase or make space on iCloud for it. For those who don't want to purchase more iCloud storage space, or who can't afford to use their iCloud storage space for their photos library, plugging the phone in and having Photos import photos is the fastest, cheapest, and easiest way to get the "live" portion of your photos onto your computer.
This is incorrect as you'll see from the posts above but the OP question was if there was a way to transfer Live Photos w/o having to plug in. The answer is yes. Made no mention on if they could do it w/o additional iCloud space. Either way, there is way as I explained and looks like it helped an MR user without having to buy additional space.
 
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Ledgem

macrumors 68000
Jan 18, 2008
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Hawaii, USA
This is incorrect as you'll see from the posts above but the OP question was if there was a way to transfer Live Photos w/o having to plug in. The answer is yes. Made no mention on if they could do it w/o additional iCloud space. Either way, there is way as I explained and looks like it helped an MR user without having to buy additional space.
I am fairly certain that what I said pertaining to the syncing of live photos through photostream (not iCloud photos) is correct, but I'm always happy to be corrected if it's wrong. Just to be pedantic, the original poster did not ask about a method to do it without plugging in, that was a reply made three days later in post #6. You wrote "I'm not sure what other folks here are talking about" so my reply was to explain to you what we were talking about, as it was unclear if this was because you truly didn't understand or if it was a rude dismissal of what we had said. I gave you the benefit of the doubt on that one, as I know that text often comes across coldly, and figured that it might have been of interest.

Thanks for helping a poster with their problem.