By Lena / Last update May 24, 2021

Can I Transfer Files from iPhone/iPad to External Hard Drive?

Now you want to copy over the photos, videos, and songs taking up space on your iPhone/iPad for safe storage. However, iOS is a closed system, which makes data transfer not that easy. When connecting iPhone/iPad to computer, you are not allowed to copy and paste files to external hard drive directly.

Transfer between iPhone and External Hard Drive

But fortunately, the situation has changed since iOS 13 & iPadOS 13: iPhone and iPad now support external hard drives and flash drives. That means you can move files freely between the external hard drive and iPhone or iPad without computer!

Own an old iPad? Don’t worry, you can transfer data from iPhone or iPad to external hard drive with third-party transfer tool. Besides, you can also take advantage of cloud storage services to achieve the transfer. Keep reading to learn more.

Part 1. How to Transfer Files from iPhone/iPad to External Hard Drive without Computer

There are 2 ways that can help you transfer files from iPhone or iPad to external hard drive without computer.

● For an iPhone or iPad with iOS 13 and later, you can rely on Files app to transfer needed files.
● If not, you can try cloud storage services like Google Drive to transfer files in an indirect way.

> Transfer Files from iPhone/iPad to External Hard Drive without Computer - Files App

Requirements

  • iPhone with iOS 13+, iPad with iPadOS 13

  • The external hard drive needs to be formatted to ExFAT, FAT32, HSF+, or APFS.

You can transfer files from third-party apps to external hard drive directly. Here we take transferring photos from iPad to external hard drive as an example.

1. Connect your external hard drive to your iPad.

- If you have a 2018 (or later) iPad Pro with a USB-C port and have a USB-C flash drive, just plug in the flash drive to your iPad.

- If it is another model of iPad or iPhone, you should use a Lightning to USB adapter to connect any USB flash drive.

2. Go to Photos app > Choose the pictures you want to transfer > Click Share button > Tap Save to Files.

3. Choose your external hard drive > Select a folder to save your pictures > Tap Save.

Save Files to Flash Drive

> Transfer Files from iPhone/iPad to External Hard Drive without Computer - Google Drive

Files stored in the cloud can be accessed on any device. We can take advantage of this feature to achieve iPhone/iPad to external hard drive transfer. First upload files to Google Drive on iPhone/iPad > Then download files on computer > Finally copy files to external hard drive. Here we take Google Drive as an example.

On iPhone/iPad: Download Google Drive > Open the app and sign in >Tap the “+” icon > Tap Upload > Tap Photos and Videos > Select the pictures or videos you want to upload to Google Drive.

Upload Files to Google Drive

On computer: Open a browser and go to Google Drive website > Download files on computer > Copy and paste files to external hard drive.

Part 2. Transfer Files from iPhone/iPad to External Hard Drive via AOMEI MBackupper

You can transfer data from iPhone/iPad to external hard drive without computer, but the above two methods have disadvantages.

If you want to use Files app you transfer files, the iPhone/iPad should run on iOS 13 and later and you may need to buy something like Apple’s Lightning to USB-3 Camera Adapter in order to get it to work. As for Google Drive, it offers limited cloud storage space.

So here come’s another way to help you transfer files from iPhone/iPad to external hard drive via USB connection. The professional iOS data transfer tool AOMEI MBackupper can help you save photos, videos, songs, contacts, messages and more from iPhone/iPad to external hard drive directly.

Steps to Transfer Data from iPhone/iPad to External Hard Drive

Download, install and launch AOMEI MBackupper. It supports all iPhone/iPad models including the latest iPhone 12 (Pro Max/Pro/mini), 12-inch iPad Pro (5th generation), 11-inch iPad Pro (3rd generation).

1. Open AOMEI MBackupper > Connect iPhone/iPad to computer via USB cable > Enter passcode on iPhone/iPad Home screen.

2. Click Transfer to Computer option.

3. Click the “+” icon > Choose the photos, songs or videos you want to transfer > Click OK to continue.

Select Files

4. Choose your external hard drive as the destination > Click Transfer to start.

Transfer

AOMEI MBackupper also allows you to backup the whole iPhone/iPad to external hard drive. Simply click Custom Backup and choose the files you want to backup. If you accidentally lost any data on iPhone/iPad, you can restore the backup files to device and it will not erase any existing data.

Custom Backup

Conclusion

That’s all for how to transfer files from iPhone/iPad to external hard drive. If you want to transfer files without computer, you can let Files app or Google Drive make it. If you have a computer at hand, you can rely on AOMEI MBackupper to transfer files to external hard drive via USB connection.