The Download button in the iCloud "Photos" section on a laptop.
Khamosh Pathak

If you have an iPhone with base storage, you’re most likely used to backing up your photos on Apple’s iCloud. But what if you want to share or download your backed-up iPhone photos? Well, you can download them directly from iCloud to your Mac!

If all your photos are on your iPhone, you can simply share them with your Mac via AirDrop. If they’re not, though, it can take a long time to download your older photos to your iPhone, and then share them. It’s much quicker to download them from the cloud to your computer.

To do this, open iCloud.com on your Mac, log in with your Apple ID (the same ID you use on your iPhone), and then click the Next button.

Type your Apple ID, and then click the Next button.

Here, click “Photos.”

Click "Photos."

You now see the Apple Photos interface in your browser. If you’ve used the Photos app on your Mac before, you’ll be familiar with it.

Navigate to the particular album or media type in the sidebar. You can also just go to the “Photos” section and scroll up to find older images.

Click an album in the sidebar.

When you locate the photo or video you want to download, click it to highlight it. If you want to select multiple files, hold down the “Shift” key while you click them.

Select the photos or videos you want to download.

After you select all the photos or videos you want to save locally, click the Download button in the toolbar at the top. Your Mac will download the photos and videos in a full-resolution format.

Click the Download button in iCloud.

When the download completes, go to the Downloads folder on your computer to view your photos and videos.


If you want to share photos and videos from your iPhone with your friends, we’ve outlined the best methods in our iPhone photo-sharing guide.

RELATED: How to Share Photos and Videos From Your iPhone

Khamosh Pathak Khamosh Pathak
Khamosh Pathak is a freelance technology writer who specializes in tutorials. His work has also been published on iPhoneHacks, Zapier's blog, MakeUseOf, and Guiding Tech. Khamosh has seven years of experience writing how-tos, features and technology guides on the internet.
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