Use Shared Albums in Photos

Shared Albums let you share photos and videos with just the people you choose — and they can add their own photos, videos, and comments.

using Shared Albums on Mac, iPhone, and iPad

With Shared Albums, you choose the photos you want to share, and the people you want to share them with. For more spontaneous sharing using great moments that Photos chooses from your library, try Sharing Suggestions.

Before you begin

  1. Update your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch to the latest iOS, your Mac to the latest macOS, and your Apple TV 4K or Apple TV (4th generation) to the latest tvOS.
  2. Set up iCloud on all of your devices.
  3. Make sure that you’re signed in to iCloud with the same Apple ID on all of your devices that you want to use with Shared Albums.
  4. If you have a Windows PC, update to Windows 7 or later and download iCloud for Windows.

Turn on Shared Albums

  • On your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch, go to Settings > [your name] > iCloud > Photos, then turn on Shared Albums.
  • On your Mac, choose Apple () menu > System Preferences. Select iCloud, click the Options button next to Photos, and then select Shared Albums.
  • On your Apple TV, go to Settings > iCloud > iCloud Photos Settings and turn on Shared Albums.
  • On your Windows PC, open iCloud for Windows and select Photos. Click the Options button to verify that Shared Albums is on, then click Apply.

If you're using earlier versions of iOS, iCloud for Windows, iPhoto, or Aperture, you can still create and see Shared Albums. In earlier versions of iOS, macOS, tvOS, and iCloud for Windows, Shared Albums was called iCloud Photo Sharing.

Use Shared Albums

Use the Photos app to create a Shared Album that shows only the photos that you choose. Invite up to 100 of your favorite people to join in, make comments, and even add their own shots. Then you can manage your Shared Album and permanently save any photos that your friends add.

Create a new Shared Album

creating a new Shared Album on iPhone

  1. Go to the Albums tab and tap the blue plus sign..
  2. Tap New Shared Album.
  3. Give the Shared Album a name, then tap Next.
  4. Choose people to invite from your contacts, or type an email address or iMessage phone number.
  5. Tap Create.

Invite more people

inviting people to a Shared Album on iPhone

You can even share albums with friends and family who don't use iCloud. Just open a Shared Album that you created, go to the People tab on your iOS device or click the people icon on your Mac, and turn on Public Website. Your photos publish to a website that anyone can see in an up-to-date web browser. 

selecting photos to add to a Shared Album on iPhone     

Add photos and videos

You can quickly add photos and videos to a Shared Album with these steps:

  1. In the Photos tab or from within an album, tap Select and then select the photos and videos that you want to share.
  2. Go to the sharing icon > Shared Albums.
  3. Choose the album where you want to share your photos.

If you have a Shared Album open, you can also tap the blue plus sign to select photos and videos to add.

When you add new photos, the people that you share the album with are notified automatically. Make sure that Subscribers Can Post is turned on so that they can add photos and videos too. Just go to the Shared Album's People tab on your iOS device or click the people icon on your Mac.

Comment and Like

Shared Album activity on iPhone

Friends and family who are signed in to iCloud can leave comments and like photos from your Shared Album. You'll automatically get a notification when they do, and they'll be notified if anyone comments back. Learn more about comments in Shared Albums.

 

Save photos and videos

selecting photos from a Shared Album to save on iPhone

People you share with can save photos and videos to their own library. On your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch, tap the photo or video > the sharing icon > Save Image or Save Video. On your Mac, select the photo or video, then control-click > Import.

Delete from a Shared Album

If you're the owner of a Shared Album, you can delete any photos, videos, or comments from anyone. Subscribers can delete anything that they personally added. Anything you delete is automatically deleted from the album on all your devices and the devices of subscribers.

Any photos that you saved or downloaded from a Shared Album to your Photos library stay in your library even if the Shared Album is deleted or the person who created it stops sharing it.

Remove subscribers or delete an album

As the creator of a Shared Album, you control who can access it. You can remove subscribers or delete the album at any time. When you delete a Shared Album, it's automatically removed from all of your devices and the devices of your subscribers. If Public Website was enabled, the Shared Album is removed from the web too.

How to remove a subscriber

  1. Open the Shared Album.
  2. Go to the People tab on your iOS device or click the people icon on your Mac.
  3. Select the subscriber that you want to remove.
  4. Select Remove Subscriber.
     

How to delete a Shared Album

  1. Open the Shared Album.
  2. Go to the People tab on your iOS device or click the people icon on your Mac.
  3. Choose Delete Shared Album.

File types that you can use in Shared Albums

Shared Albums support these image formats:

  • HEIF
  • JPEG
  • RAW*
  • PNG
  • GIF
  • TIFF

Shared Albums also support special formats that you capture with your iPhone, like slo-mo, time-lapse, Live Photos, and Memory videos. When shared, photos taken with standard point-and-shoot cameras, SLR cameras, or iOS devices have up to 2048 pixels on the long edge. Panoramic photos can be up to 5400 pixels wide. You can share GIFs that are 100MB or smaller.

Shared Albums support these video file types and formats:

  • HEVC
  • MP4
  • QuickTime 
  • H.264
  • MPEG-4 

Videos can be up to fifteen minutes in length and are delivered at up to 720p resolution.

* You can't upload RAW photos to Shared Albums on your Windows PC.

Shared Album storage limits

A Shared Album can hold up to 5000 photos and videos. If you reach your Shared Album limit, you need to delete some photos or videos before adding new ones. The photos and videos you share (and the comments or likes associated with those photos) stay in iCloud until you or the contributor delete them manually, or until you delete the Shared Album completely.

The photos and videos in your Shared Albums are kept in iCloud, but they don't count against your iCloud storage limit.

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