4 Fixes: Not All Photos Importing from iPhone to Mac

When you find not all photos importing from iPhone to Mac, try to get out of the trouble on your own with the solutions mentioned in this guide.


By Demi / Updated on May 31, 2024

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Some photos do not transfer from iPhone to Macbook

A seemingly random portion of the images stored in the "Photos" app on my iPhone will not transfer to the "Photos" application on my MacBook. Could this have something to do with the age of the photos? Is there a way to do a forced backup of the entire Photos app on my phone to the Photos application on my MacBook? Thanks for help.

- Question from Apple Community

You may transfer photos from iPhone to computer, like your Macbook to view them on a larger screen. You may also clear up some space on your iPhone in this method. Unfortunately, the photo transfer procedure may occasionally fail to complete and not all photos importing from iPhone to Mac. Well, you can use the solutions in this guide to fix this problem.

Import iPhone Photos To Mac

Why are not all photos importing from iPhone to Mac?

You may have no idea why you cannot import all photos from iPhone to Macbook. Here are three possible reasons to the issue.

• Connection problem. The connection between your Mac and iPhone is not stable enough. Besides, a faulty cable or a system error might be the cause for the connection problem.

• “Optimize iPhone Storage” option is enabled on iPhone. If you enabled iCloud Photo Library and Optimize iPhone Storage option on iPhone, the photos will not actually be stored in your iPhone storage. That’s why you can’t import all photos from iPhone to Mac.

• Add too many photos to Mac at a time. Furthermore, if you import a large number of photos from your iPhone to your Mac at once, the Photos app may become stuck when importing.

Fixes to not all photos importing from iPhone to Mac

You may figure out why import all new photos from iPhone to mac not working, now, it’s time to fix it out with the solutions shown below. You can try them one after another until your issue gets fixed.

Quick fixes to troubleshoot the issue

It may not be a serious trouble, the quick fixes here may help you you in a short time.

• Unlock your iPhone before connect it to your Mac.

• Tap Trust on your iPhone when prompted to confirm you trust the device.

• Keep iTunes close when you connect iPhone to Mac. You can also try to restart both your iPhone and Mac.

• Exit third-party file storage services like Dropbox because they might interfere with Photos, iTunes, and iCloud.

Reset Location & Privacy settings

As mentioned above, if not all photos are importing from iPhone to Mac, chances may be that your iPhone fail to be identified, and the connection error may be caused by the location and privacy settings. To fix it, you can reset the Location & Privacy settings on your iPhone.

Go to Settings > Choose General > Transfer or Reset iPhone > Reset > Tap Reset Location & Privacy.

reset location privacy

After that, connect your iPhone to MacBook and try to import photos again.

Turn off/on iCloud Photo Library

Some photos fail to be imported from iPhone to Mac because of an enabled iCloud Photo Library. To fix the issue, you can try these two ways.

Way 1. Disable iCloud Photo Library on iPhone
Go to the Settings app on your iPhone > Tap [your name] > Choose iCloud > Photos > Toggle off the switch beside iCloud Photos.

iCloud Photos

When a window prompts choose Download Photos & Videos, and all photos on iCloud will be saved to your iPhone.

If you don’t want to disable it on iPhone because you have no idea what happens if delete iCloud Photo Library, you can also try Way 2.

Way 2. Enable iCloud Photo Library on Mac
You can also choose to turn on iCloud Photo Library on Mac so that iPhone photos will be synced to Mac via iCloud, and you don’t have to manually upload the iPhone photos.

On your Mac, click the Apple icon > Go to System Preferences > Choose iCloud > Options next to Photos > Toggle on iCloud Photo Library.

iCloud Photo Library Mac

Repair Library

It’s kind of tricky but useful to repair the photos library on your Mac when you find not all photos importing from iPhone to Mac. Follow the steps below to have a try.

Step 1. Quit Photos on Mac > Launch Photos again and immediately press the Command + Option keys.

Step 2. When the Repair Library window prompt, choose Repair to launch the process.

Mac Repair Library


Transferring photos from iPhone to Mac should be an easy task. But the process may sometimes fail to launch. Hope the solutions listed in this gudie can help you out of the problem, not all photos importing from iPhone to Mac. If this guide helps you, please share it with others.

Demi · Editor
Demi is an editor of FoneTool group as well as a good advisor in the area of iOS-related issues. She does well in finding solutions to people's problems. She enjoys traveling, gardening, and watching movies. She spends most of her free time with her pet and family.