Fixed: iCloud Photos not Downloading to iPhone/iPad/PC

Your iPhone photos would be easily managed via iCloud. If you find that iCloud photos not downloading to iPhone, iPad, or computer, follow this passage to know how to fix it.


By Dylan / Updated on June 14, 2024

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Why iCloud Photos not downloading to iPhone/iPad/PC?

Nowadays, people tend to take photos with iPhone because of the great chip and photography algorithm. And they would like to save photos to their iCloud to share/transfer photos to another iDevice, especially when they have a new iPhone, users can get iCloud photos to a new iPhone.

However, when you sync photos from iCloud on another iPhone/iPad/PC, you may receive an error saying "Photos could not be downloaded: Photos could not be downloaded at this time due to an error. Please try again".  

iCloud Photos Could Not Be Downloaded

There are various causes making your device unable to sync iCloud Photos, like an unstable Internet environment, system glitch, and improper settings. Don't worry. Next, we will demonstrate several fixes to help you out of this issue.

Section 1. How to fix iCloud photos not downloading to iPhone/iPad

iCloud service is based on Apple account. Thus, before we get started, please make sure the device is signed in with the same Apple ID. 

Method 1.  Connect iPhone to Wi-Fi

Good network condition is necessary to download massive photos from iCloud.

You need to check the Internet speed on your iPhone. For example, open YouTube to see whether the video could be fluently loaded.

If the Internet is good, the problem might be caused by the iCloud server. It is not iCloud photos not loading. Wait patiently until they are downloaded to your iPhone.

Method 2. Allow iPhone to download original photos

To optimize storage, iPhone provides "Optimize iPhone Storage" option on Photo settings. And it will not download the full-resolution photos on your iPhone. Follow the steps below to download and keep original photos.

Step 1. On your iPhone, go to the "Settings".

Step 2. Scroll down and tap "Photos" > Choose "Download and Keep Originals".

Method 3. Sign out iCloud again

It might be caused by system glitches so you could solve the problem by restarting the service.

Go to the iPhone "Settings" > tap your profile > scroll down the screen > tap "Sign out" > select the data you want to keep > use your Apple ID to sign in again.

Sign out of iCloud

Why are your iPhone photos blurry?
Have you ever selected photos to view in Photos app but find that the photos are all blurry? This is because you have uploaded iPhone photos to iCloud and enabled the option to optimize iPhone storage, so that the photos are but thumbnails. Every time you select a photo to view, it takes time to download from iCloud.

Section 2. How to fix iCloud photos not downloading to PC Windows 10?

To download iCloud photos to Windows computer, you could have 2 ways, using iCloud for Windows or your browser.

If you install iCloud for Windows, you can easily manage your iCloud photos as the local photos.

View Photos on iCloud

If you choose to use a browser, you can download photos from the server after signing in your Apple ID. The specific steps could be found in this article: How to Download iCloud Photos?

What if your photos won't download from iCloud to computer? You need to use the client in the correct way.

Method 1. Check settings

If you find that iCloud photos not syncing to PC, you might get the wrong Settings in iCloud for Windows, so you can’t use it download iCloud photos.

Open iCloud client, check Photos, and then click Options. Check Upload to My Photo Stream and do remember to check Download new photos and videos to my PC.


Method 2. Manually Download

You need to manually download photos from iCloud on your PC.

Enter Windows File Explorer > find and select iCloud Photos > click Download photos and videos. Your photos would be saved in the folder Download.

iCloud Photos

Section 3. An easier way to download iCloud photos to PC/iPhone/iPad

If you seek an easier and fast way to save the iCloud photos to your different devices, you can choose the reliable third app - FoneTool. FoneTool provides an iCloud management features, with the uses-friendly interface, you can download the iCloud data to your PC/iPhone/iPad. Including photos, contacts, notes, videos, and iCloud Drive.

Also, it supports you to upload data to iCloud in a fast speed and delete iCloud backups with ease. Install FoneTool and follow the steps to get iCloud photos on your PC.

Download FreewareWin 11/10/8.1/8/7/XP
Secure Download

 Step 1. Open FoneTool on your computer > Click My iCloud > Sign in with your Apple ID > Then select Manage iCloud.

icloud photos not downloading

Step 2. Click Photos on the left pane > Preview and choose the pictures you want to save to your computer > Tap Download. 

icloud photos not downloading

Step 3. Choose a destination to save the files > Click Download to begin.

icloud photos not downloading

Bonus tip: Transfer iCloud photos to PC/iPhone/iPad without iCloud

iCloud Photos issues are often caused by Internet problems. You can have an easier and safer way to sync photos without the Internet. Besides help you manage your iCloud data, FoneTool also provides an excellent offline iPhone data transfer function. With this tool, you can easily and quickly transfer photos from iPhone to iPhone/iPad/PC.

Step 1. Click the button below to get the latest installation package of FoneTool. Install this software on your computer. Connect iPhone to computer with USB cable.

Download Freeware Win 11/10/8.1/8/7

Step 2. Open FoneTool and click Phone Transfer > Select iPhone to PC and click Get Started.

Transfer to Computer

Step 3. Click the “+” icon to add photos from iPhone.

Select Files

Step 4. Select the photos from your iPhone and click OK.

Choose Photos

Step 5. Click Start Transfer button to get photos off iPhone.


If you want to directly send photos from computer to iPhone, select PC to iPhone in step 1.


iCloud Photos makes you easily share photos among all of your devices. If you find iCloud photos not downloading to iPhone, iPad, or computer, this passage would be very helpful to fix the issue.

iCloud Photos is not the only option to sync your photos. You could have many other ways to do that, and FoneTool is an excellent program for you.

Don’t forget to share this passage to help more people.

Dylan · Editor
Dylan is an editor of mobile backup software. He likes to share the latest news about iPhone and iOS, write useful tips, and give solutions to help people solve all kinds of issues.