Apple has recently announced that it will permanently delete photos from its users' 'My Photo Stream' this month. This news has come as a surprise to the Apple community, as users struggle to understand the implications of this announcement and what necessary precautions can be taken. In this blog post, we will get into the details of this new move by Apple, explore the reasons behind it, and provide tips on how iPhone/iPad/Mac users can safeguard their precious photos.
"My Photo Stream is scheduled to be shut down on July 26, 2023. As part of this transition, new photo uploads to My Photo Stream from your devices will stop one month before, on June 26, 2023.
The photos in My Photo Stream are already stored on at least one of your devices, so as long as you have the device with your originals, you won't lose any photos as part of this process. If a photo you want isn't already in your Library on a particular iPhone, iPad, or Mac, make sure that you save it to your Library on that device…” Read more
What is Apple's My Photo Stream?
My Photo Stream, launched in 2011, was designed to sync photos across multiple Apple devices such as iPhone, iPad, or Mac.
This feature automatically stores your most recent pictures (up to 1000) for approx. 30 days so you can view and download them easily from other Apple devices. After this period, photos are removed from My Photo Stream but remain in your device's Photos app. However, this only shows photos and not your live images or videos.
How to Protect Your 'My Photo Stream' Pictures?
Apple, known for its commitment to user privacy and data security, has recommended several preventive measures to mitigate the risk of losing any important photo due to this update.
1. Move My Photo Stream images to your Library
Even if the pictures in My Photo Stream are already there on at least one of your Apple devices, you must save these pictures to your Photo Library to avoid losing them. Here's how to copy My Photo Stream pictures to your Photo Library:
On your iPhone, iPad, or iPod Touch:
- Open the Photos app and tap Albums.
- Tap on My Photo Stream > Select.
- Select all the photos you want to save, then tap the Share button > Save Image.
On your Mac:
- Open the Photos app and then open the My Photo Stream
- Select the photos you want to save which aren't currently in your photo library.
- Drag and drop them from the My Photo Stream album into your Library.
2. Move to iCloud Photos
To preserve your My Photo Stream images in their original and high-resolution version, you can transfer them to iCloud Photos.
If you already have an iCloud account, just enable iCloud Photos to automatically upload & sync every photo and video you capture on the device, making them accessible from anywhere.
To use the iCloud Photos service, you will require the following:
- iPhone running iOS 8.3 or later version.
- iPad with iPadOS 8.3 or later version.
- Mac running OS X Yosemite or later version.
How to set up iCloud Photos on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch?
- On your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch, go to Settings.
- Next, click on [Your Name] > iCloud.
- Tap on Photos and do the following:
For iOS 16, iPadOS 16, or later versions: Toggle on the 'Sync this [device]' option.
For iOS 15, iPadOS 15, or earlier versions: Turn on the iCloud Photos
How to set up iCloud Photos on your Mac?
- On your Mac, go to Apple Menu and click on System Preferences.
- Click Apple ID and then select iCloud in the sidebar.
- Now, select Photos and turn on the switch next to Sync this Mac.
Don't want to use iCloud Photos?
While iCloud Photos is a convenient option for many Apple users, it's important to acknowledge that it is not the best fit for everyone. Limited free storage of 5GB or lack of cross-platform compatibility can compel Apple users to look for other alternatives.
Storage options, such as Google Photos, Microsoft OneDrive, Dropbox, external hard drives, etc., are available to ensure your iPhone Photos are safe and easily accessible.
The Bottom Line
Apple's announcement of the potential discontinuation of My Photo Stream has understandably caused worry among its users. While a specific reason for this action remains undisclosed, they are actively addressing the issue to prevent data loss. In the meantime, iPhone users must take precautionary measures to safeguard their photos. They can simply move the My Photo Stream images to the Photo Library, iCloud Photos, or other backup folders.