How to Move Pictures from Google Photos to iCloud (2023)

Home News How to Move Pictures from Google Photos to iCloud

How to Move Pictures from Google Photos to iCloud (1)

How to Move Pictures from Google Photos to iCloud (2)

Google Photos has been my go-to photo and video backup solution for years at this point. It’s well thought out, has an impressive search function, and it’s completely free. Or at least it was. Starting June 1, 2021, new photos that you back up on Google Photos will count towards your free 15GB quota. That means you will have to buy Google One plans to increase your storage limit. So, if you are thinking of switching away from Google Photos, here is how to move pictures from Google Photos to iCloud.

Transfer Pictures from Google Photos to iCloud

As an iPhone owner and someone who is deeply entrenched in the Apple ecosystem, using Google Photos only gave me one distinct advantage — free storage for my photos and videos that was accessible anywhere I want. However, now that the unlimited free plan is going away, I (and several other iPhone users) are faced with a very important question. Should we stick with Google Photos and pay for Google One or buy an iCloud subscription and move to Apple’s photo service instead?

I feel more confident with iCloud photos because it’s well integrated into all my Apple devices. So I have pretty much decided to switch over from Google Photos to iCloud. So in this article, I will show you how to move pictures and videos from Google Photos to iCloud.

Table Of Contents

How to Move Some Photos from Google Photos to iCloud

First, let’s see how you can move a select few photos from Google Photos to iCloud. You should use this method if your Google Photos library is full of random pictures (because it was free and you never cared about seeing what gets uploaded) and you only want some of these pictures to be available on iCloud, where you are paying for the storage. Follow the steps to see how it works:

  • Go to the Google Photos website and select the pictures you want to transfer to iCloud. This step may take a lot of time if you have hundreds (or thousands) of photos backed up to Google Photos over the years.

How to Move Pictures from Google Photos to iCloud (3)

  • Then, download them by choosing the download option in the “More” menu (three-dot icon) at the top right corner, or using the keyboard shortcut “shift+D”.

How to Move Pictures from Google Photos to iCloud (4)

  • Now, head over to the iCloud website. Log into your Apple account and navigate to “Photos”.

How to Move Pictures from Google Photos to iCloud (5)

  • Here, click on the upload icon at the top, and choose the photos you downloaded from Google Photos.

How to Move Pictures from Google Photos to iCloud (6)

That’s it. Your pictures will now be uploaded to iCloud Photos, and you will be able to access them on any Apple device without any hassles. You can also use this method to import any other photos or videos to your iCloud library.

How to Transfer Your Entire Google Photos Library to iCloud

There’s a higher chance that you want to shift your entire Google Photos library to iCloud. So let’s check out how you can move your entire library from Google Photos to iCloud. It is, however, a time-consuming process because you will need to ask Google for a copy of your entirelibrary of photos and videos in the cloud.

Based on how many pictures you click regularly and how long you’ve been using Google Photos, it could be a massive number of photos and videos.

  • Go to the Google Takeout website, and first, click on ‘Deselect all’.

How to Move Pictures from Google Photos to iCloud (7)

  • Then, scroll down to the “Google Photos” option and select the checkbox next to it.

How to Move Pictures from Google Photos to iCloud (8)

  • Scroll to the very bottom and click on “Next step”.

How to Move Pictures from Google Photos to iCloud (9)

  • Select the file type (I would recommend the default .zip) and the file size. Basically, if you choose 2GB as the file size, Google will split the zip files into 2GB chunks for you. Once done, click on “Create export”.

How to Move Pictures from Google Photos to iCloud (10)

As I mentioned above, this process can take quite some time. You don’t have to keep the page open or active if you don’t want to. You can navigate away from it and do anything you want. Google will send you an email when your export is ready for download, and you can then download your entire Photos library from the link in the email.

Now that you have downloaded your photos library, you need to sync it with iCloud Photos. On a Mac, you can use the built-in Photos app for this step. You need to download “iCloud for Windows” (Free) and use it to sync your photo library with iCloud on your Windows 10 PC.

  • Open the Photos app on your Mac and click on “File -> Import” in the menu bar.

How to Move Pictures from Google Photos to iCloud (11)

  • Next, select the photos you have downloaded to import and sync them with your iCloud account.

That’s it. You have successfully moved your Google Photos library to iCloud. Do note that the process of uploading photos and videos to iCloud can also take a long time depending on how many images and videos you have, so be patient.

How to Enable Automatic Backups for iCloud Photos

The best thing about Google Photos is automatic backups, right? Well, you get that feature with iCloud Photos as well. Now that you have moved from Google Photos to iCloud, here’s how to enable automatic backup for iCloud Photos.

  • On your iPhone, go to “Settings -> Photos”, and enable the toggle next to “iCloud Photos” on this page.

How to Move Pictures from Google Photos to iCloud (12)

Your iPhone will now automatically back up photos that you click from your iPhone. What’s more, it will also intelligently clear up storage space on your iPhone when needed by removing some of the older photos and keeping them only in the cloud.

Move from Google Photos to Cloud in a Few Easy Steps!

That’s pretty much all you need to know to completely and easily move from Google Photos to iCloud. As mentioned above, Google Photos’ new policy for counting photos/ video backups towards the 15GB free quota kicks in from June 1, so you should switch as soon as possible. Also, if you don’t wish to switch to iCloud, check out other popular Google Photos alternatives. So, have you decided to switch over to iCloud photos? Or are you sticking with Google Photos? Let us know in the comments section below. Also, if you are someone who wishes to go the other route and transfer iCloud Photos over to Google Photos, do check out our linked guide for more details.

Recommended Articles

Microsoft Brings iCloud Photos Integration to Windows 11

7 Best iCloud Photos Alternatives for iPhone and iPad

Google Photos Brings Markup Tool to the Primary Editing Interface on Android

Gmail Now Lets You Save Images Directly to Google Photos

Google Photos Adds Locked Folder to Let You Hide Private Photos

How to Directly Transfer iCloud Photos to Google Photos

  1. Hello, I performed each step of your method and all my photos were imported with the timestamp of today, which means I lost all chronology for about 20 000 pictures… Is there a way to solve this, otherwise the transfer to ICloud is totally irrelevant


  2. Using takeout messes up all the timestamps of the photos. Also, it the way it organizes the photos when you download is a complete mess. Any other way to download all photos while the timestamps intact?


  3. can we get the same date when we move photos to icloud?


Leave a Reply


Can you move all photos from Google Photos to iCloud? ›

From the Google Photos folder, select all the photos you want to import into iCloud. Drag those selected photos into the iCloud Photos folder.

How do I backup my Google Photos to my iCloud? ›

Keep the Photos app open and your phone plugged in for best results.
  1. Open the Google Photos app .
  2. Sign in to your Google Account.
  3. At the top right, tap your Profile picture or Initial.
  4. Tap the Google Photos settings. Backup.
  5. Turn Backup on or off.

How do I move Google Photos to my iPhone or cloud? ›

Save your photos or videos
  1. On your iPhone or iPad, open the Google Photos app .
  2. Select a photo or video.
  3. Tap More. Download.

How do I delete photos from Google Photos but keep them on iCloud? ›

Navigate to Settings > Apps > Google Photos > Storage. And then deny access to storage. Once done, it will make you delete photos without deleting them from phone.

How do I remove photos from Google but keep them in iCloud? ›

Case 1: Turn off iCloud

If you turn off iCloud before deleting photos from Google Photos on iPhone, then the photo will be removed from your device and Google Photos. It will stay on iCloud. However, if you enable iCloud again on the same phone, the photo will be removed from it too.

How to remove photos from Google Photos without deleting from iPhone? ›

Remove backed up photos & videos from Google Photos but not your device
  1. On your mobile device, turn off backup and sync in the Google Photos app.
  2. On your computer or in the Chrome browser on your mobile device, go to and remove your selected backed up photos and videos from Google Photos.

Can you use both Google Photos and iCloud? ›

Overview of iCloud and Google Photos

Both cloud storage services are useful when users want to stash photos, screenshots, and videos. And many Apple users are wondering if they could use them together, since it can be very quick to find that iCloud is full. Thankfully, the answer is YES!

How do I download all my photos from Google Photos? ›

Save your photos or videos
  1. On your computer, go to
  2. Select a photo or video.
  3. Click More. Download.

Can I transfer from Google Drive to iCloud? ›

Step 1: Log in to your Google Drive and head to the file/folder you want to back up. Step 2: Right-click to download the file/folder to your local devices. Step 3: Go to iCloud and sign in with your account. Then you need to enter the verification code that is sent to your iPhone.

Is Google Photos or iCloud better? ›

Apple offers better editing options as third party apps can tie directly into the library. If you are heavily tied to the Apple ecosystem, it's hard to discount all iCloud Photos' benefits. I will recommend you start there and move to Google Photos if it doesn't meet your needs.

Will all my Photos be saved on iCloud? ›

iCloud Photos keeps every photo and video you take in iCloud automatically, so you can access your library from any device, whenever you like. Any changes you make to your collection on one device will be reflected on your other devices too. Your photos and videos are organised into Years, Months, Days and All Photos.

Can I delete Photos off my phone but keep them on iCloud? ›

You can delete photos from your iPhone but keep them in iCloud by turning off iCloud photo sharing. You can also use a different iCloud account to keep the previous account's iCloud photos safe. Another solution is to use a different cloud server, like Dropbox or OneDrive, to back up the photos.

Why is my iPhone storage full when I have iCloud? ›

Backups of your devices are often the culprits behind a full iCloud storage space. It's entirely possible you had your old iPhone set to upload backups to the cloud automatically, and then never removed those files.

How to remove all photos from Google Photos without deleting from phone? ›

All Replies (6)
  1. On your Android device, open the Settings app.
  2. Tap Apps (or Application Manager)
  3. Tap Google Photos.
  5. Tap CLEAR DATA.

Does deleting Google Photos also delete iCloud photos? ›

However, if you delete them from the Google Cloud it will get deleted from your device/iCloud. Photos and videos you delete are also removed from: and any synced devices.

Does deleting photos in your camera from Google Photos affect iCloud photos? ›

Google Photos is a one way syncing service, unlike iCloud, which is a full 2 way sync. If you delete a photo from Google photos it will be deleted from all devices logged in to Google Photos.

Do photos get deleted from Google Photos when deleted from phone? ›

If you remove copies of photos and videos on your Android device, they're now deleted but, you still can: See your photos and videos, including the ones you just removed, in the Google Photos app and Edit, share, delete, and manage anything in your Google Photos library.

Do I need iCloud storage if I have Google Photos? ›

You only need this data on one cloud, there's no need to fill up space on both clouds. Here's the process to toggle off iCloud photos, so that you can use Google Photos instead of iCloud: From iPhone Settings, click on your name. This will give you options and you need to visit iCloud for the same.

How do I get rid of Google Photos? ›

To permanently delete photos and videos:
  1. On your computer, go to
  2. Point at the item you want to permanently delete. At the top left, click Select. .
  3. At the top right, click Delete permanently. Delete.

How do I bulk delete Google Photos? ›

  1. Select the first photo. ...
  2. Scroll down, but not too far and not too fast. ...
  3. Hover with the mouse over a photo and hold the shift key. ...
  4. Repeat steps 2 and 3.
  5. When the thumbs do not turn blue you will have to scroll back up till the last selected pics, select one more, and repeat steps 2-3.

Why does Google Photos delete when I delete from iPhone? ›

To put things into perspective, if you use the Google Photos app directly to delete photos, both copies (cloud and device) will be deleted as they are in sync with each other. But deleting photos using other gallery apps will delete the device copy only. Hence, your cloud copy will remain safe and untouched.

How do I know if my photos are in iCloud? ›

How to access iCloud Photos
  1. Open the Photos app.
  2. Select Library to see your photos.
  3. On your iPhone or iPad, tap the Albums tab to see My Albums, People & Places, Media Types, and Utilities. On your Mac, your Photos, Albums, and Projects are listed in the sidebar.
Apr 24, 2023

How do I move photos from Google Photos to Apple Photos? ›

Turn sync on or off
  1. On your iPhone or iPad, open Google Photos .
  2. At the top right, tap your account profile photo.
  3. Tap Photos Settings .
  4. Tap Apple Photos.
  5. Tap Sync favorites .
  6. Tap Turn on sync or Turn off sync.

Can I download all my photos from Google Photos to my phone? ›

Download from Google Photos to your device
  1. Open any photo at Google Photos.
  2. Tap the 3-dot menu or swipe upwards.
  3. Choose Download. If the photo is already on your device, the option will not appear. On my Android device the photo is saved to DCIM/Restored and in Google Photos shown in Camera.

Why can't I download all photos from Google Photos? ›

If your device is brimming with a lack of storage space, then this can culminate in Google photos trouble downloading photos/videos. Make sure to clear the storage and remove all the unnecessary junk files to free up more space on your Android phone.

How do I backup my Google Photos to my hard drive? ›

1. Go to Google Photos from your browser and sign in to your Google Drive account. 2. Select single or multiple photos that you need and then click the Download button to download them to your local PC.

How do I move photos and videos from Google Drive to iCloud? ›

  1. Click "Google Photos" to launch the website. ...
  2. To choose the desired photographs, hover your cursor over them and click in the upper-left corner.
  3. Your keyboard's "Shift + D" key will download the chosen images. ...
  4. You can now import your photos into iCloud.
Jul 4, 2022

How do I merge iCloud and Google Drive? ›

Sign in with your Apple ID at Select Request to transfer a copy of your data. To start the transfer, sign in with your Google Account. To finish your request, follow the on-screen instructions.

How do I move files to iCloud storage? ›

To upload files from your iOS device with iCloud storage:
  1. Open Documents.
  2. Tap ... at the top right > Select .
  3. Select the files or folders you wish to sync with iCloud.
  4. Tap Move or Copy and select Documents – iCloud.

Which is safer Google or iCloud? ›

Although Google Drive has recently made several necessary steps forward, iCloud remains the more secure platform. Both platforms support multi-factor authentication, which we strongly recommend. Almost all data stored on iCloud servers is encrypted using the 128-bit AES standard, both in transit and at rest.

Which is more safe Google Drive or iCloud? ›

Apple takes the win security-wise, with the platform being much more secure than Google One. Nearly all data stored on iCloud's servers are encrypted both in transit and at rest to 128-bit AES standard.

Does Google Photos save to cloud? ›

It's a solid media backup to have at your disposal. And, because it's a cloud-based tool, it can free up space on your phone. Plus, it works on both Android and iOS devices.

Can I export all my Google Photos at once? ›

You can hold down Shift and click further down the page to select multiple photos at once, or hover over a date and click the tick that appears to select all photos and videos from that day. Click on the three dots at the top right and click Download (or press Shift + D). Your download should begin.

Why isn t Google Photos transfering all my photos on iPhone? ›

Open the menu in Google Photos, click Settings, and then go to "Back up & Sync." Make sure this option is turned on. Click "Backup Device Folder" to see if folders are enabled for automatic backup and sync. If you don't open the Google Photos folder, you can't back up and sync them.

Can I store photos on Google Photos and delete from iPhone? ›

Download and install the Google Photos app. Photos and videos older than 30 days can be deleted, but they'll still be backed up in your Google Photos library. Important: Before you delete your photos, make sure that they're backed up.

Will my photos delete from iCloud? ›

When you delete a photo or video from the Photos app on your iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, or Mac, it also deletes from your iCloud Photos and any other devices where you're signed in to iCloud Photos. It also no longer counts towards your iCloud storage.

What happens if I don't save my photos to iCloud? ›

However, if you turn iCloud photos off on your phone, your iPhone's Camera Roll will lose any images that weren't created on that device (if you haven't downloaded them already, that is). Images taken on your iPad, for example, will no longer show in your iPhone's Camera Roll and vice versa.

How do I keep photos on iCloud but not on phone? ›

Turn Off Photo Sharing
  1. Open the Settings app.
  2. Tap the banner with your name in it at the top of the screen.
  3. Tap iCloud.
  4. Tap Photos.
  5. Toggle off iCloud Photos.
  6. Tap Remove from iPhone to take all photos and videos off your iPhone and store them in iCloud.
Mar 6, 2023

Will iCloud delete my photos if I don't pay? ›

You have 30 days to renew your plan or download your information/photos. After 30 days, if you haven't paid, everything will be deleted.

What is the point of iCloud? ›

iCloud is the service from Apple that securely stores your photos, files, notes, passwords, and other data in the cloud and keeps it up to date across all your devices, automatically. iCloud also makes it easy to share photos, files, notes, and more with friends and family.

Is buying extra iCloud storage worth it? ›

Whether you should upgrade your iCloud+ account depends on your device usage and storage needs. For instance, if you store a lot of data and transfer it between multiple Apple devices, you'll benefit from the services of iCloud+. At the very least, you won't waste time backing up your data manually.

Does buying iCloud storage free up space on iPhone? ›

This means that you can only store 5GB of data on iCloud for free. But, iCloud does increase storage on iPhones. You can purchase storage according to your requirements and move it to the cloud. This is a type of external storage, extendible and more flexible.

What is the difference between iPhone storage and iCloud storage? ›

Device storage is the available storage on your iPhone, iPad, Mac, or other Apple device. iCloud storage keeps your photos, files, notes, and more, up-to-date and available across all your devices.

Can you merge iCloud and Google Photos? ›

You can request a copy of your iCloud photos and videos to transfer to Google Photos. Important: The transfer doesn't remove your photos and videos from iCloud. After the transfer, additional photos and videos stored in iCloud won't sync to Google Photos automatically.

Is there a way to select all photos in Google Photos? ›

Open Google Photos in your browser, whereupon you will be presented with all your images. If this is your first time visiting or selecting a file, Google might be polite enough to tell you, "Hold Shift and click to select several items at once". The process really is as simple as that!

How do I merge Google and iCloud? ›

How do I sync my iCloud contacts with Google?
  1. Go to Contacts Sync > Accounts, and sign into your Google account.
  2. Go to Contacts Sync > Accounts > iPhone Account to Sync, and choose iCloud.
  3. Go to Contacts Sync > Sync > 2-Way Sync.
Apr 16, 2023

How do I mass download from Google Photos app? ›

I found a sort-of workaround - you can go to and download multiple photos.
  1. Select the photos you want to download:
  2. Tap 3-dots > Download. This creates a ZIP file on the device.
  3. Extract the photos from the ZIP file and (optional) delete the ZIP.

How to delete photos from Google Photos without deleting from phone? ›

Another way to delete photos from google photos but not device android is by moving photos to a non-sync folder with the help of a File manager as per the below steps. Open the file manager and create a new folder (GP). Then, go to any image you want to delete from Google Photos.

How do I download more than 500 photos from Google Photos? ›

Download up to 500 selected pictures or videos using Google Photos
  1. Select multiple photos: see here how to select.
  2. At the top right, click "More options" (three dots in the top-right corner)
  3. Click "Download" (Shift+D)

How do I select more than 500 photos in Google Photos? ›

To select all photos, click on the first photo, then scroll down to the bottom of the page and hold down the Shift key. While holding down the Shift key, click on the last photo. This will select all photos between the first and last photos you clicked on.


Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Lakeisha Bayer VM

Last Updated: 12/25/2023

Views: 5492

Rating: 4.9 / 5 (69 voted)

Reviews: 92% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Lakeisha Bayer VM

Birthday: 1997-10-17

Address: Suite 835 34136 Adrian Mountains, Floydton, UT 81036

Phone: +3571527672278

Job: Manufacturing Agent

Hobby: Skimboarding, Photography, Roller skating, Knife making, Paintball, Embroidery, Gunsmithing

Introduction: My name is Lakeisha Bayer VM, I am a brainy, kind, enchanting, healthy, lovely, clean, witty person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.