Despite all of the cloud-based backup solutions from iCloud to Google Photos, there are times photos still get erased or removed by accident. A single wrong tap on the screen will instantly remove a photo that means the world to you, or even worse, it might wipe out the entire photo gallery.
In this article, I will explain all possible ways you can recover deleted photos from your iPhone to help you restore all your important photos no matter how bad the situation is. If you are lucky, you may even be able to recover all deleted photos with just a few taps. However, I will also explain how to use iPhone recovery software to recover photos you would consider unrecoverable.
The methods described in the article can be applied to all iPhone models from the latest iPhone 13 all the way up to iPhone 4. All you need to restore your photos is to follow the detailed step-by-step instructions as closely as possible.
How to Restore Deleted Picture on the iPhone with Photos App?
By default, pictures taken with your iPhone’s Camera are saved to Photos. If a photo is deleted, follow the instructions given to use Photos to get it back:
- Navigate to the iPhone home menu.
- Tap on Photos, you will see a list of albums displayed – by default, the albums “All Photos”, “People”, “Places” and others can be seen down to “Recently Deleted “.
- Tap on the folder that is marked as “Recently Deleted”. This will show the pictures that are scheduled for deletion, it will also show how much longer until they are removed permanently from your iPhone. Generally, the process will last up to 40 days since it was “Deleted”.
- Tap on the picture you wish to recover, then tap on Recover. The iPhone will display “Recover Photo” tap on “Recover Photo,” and the selected photo will be back in your Album.
How to Recover Deleted Photos from an iPhone Backup?
Backups are your second-best option for retrieving deleted photos on your iPhone. As there are several different ways you can backup photos on your iPhone, I have given three different solutions, and you can select the one that works best for you.
While recovering deleted photos from your iPhone with backups, you need to pay attention to the age of your backups. You should always use the most recent backup you have, however, do not delete all older backups. It is a good idea to have multiple backups on standby if something goes wrong with the main backup.
Since macOS Catalina, the Finder is in charge of iPhone backups as well as recoveries from them. If this is your first time recovering from an iPhone backup using Finder, don’t worry because Apple has made the process completely painless.
Follow the given steps to recover lost photos from an iPhone backup:
- Step 1. First, launch Finder.
- Step 2. Then, connect the iPhone to the computer.
- Step 3. Click on your iPhone from the list of locations on the left.
- Step 4. Click on the Restore iPhone button. This is located in the General tab.
- Step 5. Allow Finder to back up your iPhone before restoring it.
- Step 6. Click on Restore to confirm that you are ready to restore your iPhone from the selected backup.
How to Recover Deleted Photos via iCloud?
How will you get old pictures back on your iPhone with the cloud if for some reason the photo isn’t in the Photos “Recently Deleted” area? There is a chance it can be recovered via iCloud. To restore deleted photos on iPhone without backing it up to the computer first, follow the steps:
- Visit https://www.icloud.com. This will provide access to Apple’s cloud services, which are offered for free.
- You need to log in using your credentials.
- After you log in, tap on “Photos” from the web page
- Click on the album that is marked “Recently Deleted”. Now you will be able to see a list of the photos ready for deletion within the next 40 or fewer days.
- Select the photo you wish to restore, then click on “Recover”. The selected photo will be back in your photo albums. The photo will also be restored onto the iPhone after it syncs with the iCloud service again.
How to Recover Deleted Photos from iTunes Backup?
There is a chance that the device you use is not running on macOS Catalina, so you might wonder how to recover deleted pictures on macOS Mojave or earlier, or on a PC. You can restore the deleted photos from an iTunes backup. If you feel using iTunes is overwhelming don’t worry, you will be able to get your photos back with just a few clicks.
Note: macOS Mojave is the last version of Apple’s operating system that has iTunes because, in macOS Catalina and newer, iTunes is split into three different apps: Podcasts, TV, as well as Music.
To recover your deleted photos from iTunes backup, follow the steps:
- Step 1. First, open iTunes.
- Step 2. You need to use an original Apple cable to connect your iPhone to your computer.
- Step 3. Click on Restore Backup.
- Step 4. Select the most relevant and recent backup.
- Step 5. Click Restore, then wait till the restore process finishes.
How to Retrieve Deleted Photos on iPhone with Software? (without backup)
When all the above options fail, you can use image recovery software. By using a capable image recovery software solution, you can recover deleted photos even without a backup. Because deleted files remain on your device until they are overwritten by other files. How quickly they are overwritten depends on many factors, however, time is the most important one, so you should begin the image recovery process as soon as possible.
The steps to Recover Deleted Photos from an iPhone on Mac
You can use Disk Drill iPhone Recovery to recover pictures if the above-mentioned options fail. You can download it for free at the official website, it has an easy-to-use interface that can recover deleted photos, videos, as well as other information, off of iPhones (iOS 14 supported).
Even when a photo or other kind of file is deleted from your iPhone, the space is simply flagged for “use” by the rest of the operating system. This means that a file marked “Deleted” could still temporarily be present in the system’s memory until the phone decides it needs that space and overwrites it with new photos or other information. This can happen at any time and without any warning. If done in time, you will still have the ability to can still recover deleted pictures from an iPhone even if the system tells you it is “gone”.
Disk Drill works by scanning through iPhone (as well as Android devices) to recover your lost or deleted files as well.
- First, download Disk Drill. Open the .dmg file, then drag the Disk Drill application to the Applications folder on your hard drive.
- Connect your iPhone to the computer. Tap on “Trust,” then enter the unlocking code.
- Close all programs on the Mac, especially ones that connect to the iPhone for example, iTunes, and iPhoto. The lesser the communication that other applications have with the iPhone, the better.
- Run Disk Drill, there are several installation procedures to be aware of, along with additional file protections as well as monitoring that Disk Drill offers. After everything is finished, you will see a list of drives as well as devices.
- Click on your iPhone, then click on “Search for lost data”. This will launch the recovery procedure, it will scan your iPhone, looking through the memory for files that have been marked as deleted, and whose data is still available.
- Enter the iPhone’s password if asked. This password is the one that is used for encrypting iPhone backups through iTunes on the local computer.
- Disk Drill will be analyzing the iPhone’s databases as well as files and analyzing what could be recovered. During this time, do not use the iPhone.
- Review the files that Disk Drill displays when the scan completes. This will include everything from iMessages, and Notes, along with other information that the iPhone can store.
Now, there are two ways you can restore your photos.
- Select the folder marked Photos, and wait for Disk Drill to finish analyzing the thumbnails so you can see what photos you wish to restore.
- Select the photos you wish to restore.
- Select the directory where you want to restore the photos in the “Recover to” section, this is situated at the top of Disk Drill. This will by default be set to the user’s “Documents” directory.
- Click on Recover, then the selected photos will be restored to the specified directory.
If you wish to use the Finder directly, follow the alternate steps after Disk Drill has completed the scan.
- Click on “Show in Finder”.
- Read the warning displayed it’s telling you how great using Finder is.
- Click on “OK Let’s Do it” now the recovered files will be mounted as a folder, this folder will be marked as marked “Recoverable.”
- Open the mounted disk named “Recoverable,” then navigate to the directory “Accessible Files” > “DCIM,” then go through the subfolders from there you can find the photo you want:
- Copy the photos in the finder that you wish to recover.
How to Recover Deleted Photos from an iPhone on Windows?
If you do not have access to Mac OS X and if you cannot use Disk Drill to recover deleted photos from your iPhone, you could use dr. fone by Wondershare, a Windows data recovery application. It is capable of recovering deleted photos from any iOS device.
- Step 1: You need to download dr. fone. Launch the downloaded installation file, then follow the installation instructions.
- Step 2: Then. connect your iPhone to your Windows PC. Make sure to use the USB cable that was in your iPhone box. Third-party USB cables sometimes cause connection problems.
- Step 3: Launch dr. fone, then tap on the Recover iOS Data option.
- Step 4: Wait for dr. fone to detect your iPhone, then click the Start Scan button. The application will begin scanning your iPhone for deleted photos.
- Step 5: Click on Camera Roll from the list of options on the left to preview the deleted photos.
- Step 6: Choose which photos you wish to recover, then click on Restore to Device.
How to Recover Deleted Photos from iPhone with Messaging Apps?
If all of the above-mentioned methods fail, don’t worry, there still might be a chance to recover some photos if you have shared them via any IM apps, for example, WhatsApp or Viber. Even if the photo is deleted from your phone after you sent it, it will continue to exist on the app’s servers.
In the worst-case scenario, you might be losing some of the original quality if the app compresses the images. However, that is certainly better than losing the picture altogether.
Apps like Messenger as well as Viber allow you to view all shared media in one place. This makes it easy to browse through all pictures you have shared with a contact, then extract the ones you wish to recover. In other cases, you might be able to use filters to bring out the messages you are searching for.
In Discord, for example, you have the ability to use the search modifier has: image to filter all messages containing an embedded picture. If you only wish to see messages you have sent, you could also add from your-user-name.
What to do to Avoid iPhone Photo Loss in the Future?
Going through all of this process to recover deleted photos is taxing, however, the good news is that there are several ways how you can make your images more resilient to data loss. As even the most reliable data backup strategy in the world has the possibility of failure, it is recommended that you always have more than one backup. A backup of backup will come in handy when a disaster strikes, and you will be glad that you have it.
1. Back up your iPhone
2. Use services like Mega or Google Photos – Serves as Bacup for Backup
3. Safeguard your iPhone
4. Don’t Jailbreak Your iPhone
5. Be More Careful
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