Use iCloud with the Photos app
Do more with Photos
With the Photos app, you can store and organise photos and videos on your Apple devices (iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, Mac or Apple TV). You can do more with Photos on your Apple devices when you turn on iCloud. And with the iCloud for Windows app, you can also access your photos and videos on a PC.
There are three different iCloud features you can turn on: iCloud Photos, Shared Albums and My Photo Stream. Each feature lets you do different things.
When you turn on iCloud Photos (previously called iCloud Photo Library) on a device, the following happens:
All the photos and videos on that device are stored in iCloud. You can access them from any other device with iCloud Photos turned on — whether it is your iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, Mac, Apple TV or Windows computer. You can also view your photos and videos on the web at iCloud.com.
When you edit a photo, organise photos and videos in albums, or delete a photo or video on one device, you see the changes on all your devices with iCloud Photos turned on.
You can share photos and videos with an iCloud Link from your iPhone, iPad or iPod touch, or on iCloud.com. Anyone with the link can view your photos; the links will expire after 30 days.
When you turn on Shared Albums (previously called iCloud Photo Sharing) on a device, the following happens:
You can share albums with other iCloud users. Subscribers to your shared albums can add photos and videos and make comments.
You can also share albums on the web so anyone with the link can view them — even if they do not use iCloud.
My Photo Stream
Note: My Photo Stream is not available for new accounts. If you use iCloud for Windows, My Photo Stream is only available in version 7.
When you turn on My Photo Stream on a device, the following happens:
Recent photos (from the last 30 days) are stored in iCloud. My Photo Stream stores a maximum of 1,000 photos across all your devices.
You can access your recent photos on any other device with My Photo Stream turned on — whether it is your iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, Mac, Apple TV or Windows computer. Photos from other devices appear in a My Photo Stream album.
When you delete a photo in My Photo Stream, it is removed from My Photo Stream on all your devices.
Photos uses your iCloud storage differently depending on which iCloud features you turn on. See What is iCloud storage?
iCloud Photos: photos and videos stored in iCloud Photos count towards your iCloud storage.
Shared Albums: the photos and videos in your Shared Albums do not count towards your iCloud storage.
My Photo Stream: photos stored in My Photo Stream do not count towards your iCloud storage.
First, see Set up your iPad to use iCloud with the Photos app. Then learn what you can do with iCloud and Photos on any device or on iCloud.com.