This past couple of months I have started looking for a different way to handle my photo’s and video’s that I capture with my iPad and iPhone. I used to not have that many to deal with so I simply hooked that cable up to my laptop, plugged in my iOS device and imported it all into iPhoto. Then I would hit the delete option after importing. This would keep my camera roll cleared out and keep me from importing duplicates the next time around. Now that I have my iPhone it has become as bit more complicated because I am capturing many more photo’s and video with the phone. So let me fill you in on how I am dealing with this issue.
First thing to keep clear is the difference between the camera roll and your photo library. The camera roll is where a picture will go when you shoot it with your camera. That picture will sit in the camera roll until you delete it. The camera roll is also where screen shots are stored, any pictures you save from the Safari app and any other app.
Your Photos app is where you put photo’s when you are syncing from your computer.
Apple’s Photo Stream makes these two apps a bit more confusing. If you have Photo Stream turned on then your last 1,000 photo’s will be streamed out to the cloud. (This time I do NOT mean videos by the way. Photo Stream does not do video as of right now.) So you will be able to see the photo’s that are in your Camera Roll, inside of your Photo’s App under the Photo Stream button. Those photo’s are not actually in your Photo’s app though. You are simply looking at your pictures that are out there in the cloud. Now remember that your Photo Stream are the last 1.000 pictures from ALL your devices, your iPhone, iPad, iPodTouch, Computer or whatever else you have hooked up to your stream.
Obviously you would probably want to save the pictures from your camera roll and cherish those precious moments forever. Photo Stream makes this an easy process! Take a look in iPhoto at the options under Photo Stream. Those settings allow you to automatically import the photo’s (not videos) from your iPhone or iPad camera roll and iPhoto will import those into your permanent iPhoto database.
This is an easy way to take ALL of your camera roll pictures (not videos) and get them into your computer for further manipulation. The videos you need to find another way to deal with those – which is easily done by hooking that cable up between the computer and the iOS device.
There is one huge issue though with this process. If you let Photo Stream and iPhoto do all the work of importing your photo’s (not videos) into your computer iPhoto database, you will be left with the original photo’s on your iOS device. This gets confusing after awhile though. I’m constantly forgetting what I have imported and what still needs to be imported. The answer is to delete the photo’s from the camera roll once you know that iPhoto has imported them form your Photo Stream. Of course you can do this one at a time on the iOS device but this gets tedious, especially if you have 400+ pictures like i did tonight. You cannot delete them using iPhoto either – in the old days before Photo Stream did the improving of the photo’s for us, we would click the import button and then click the delete button after the import was done.
There is a quick solution. A very unused app, Image Capture, sits in your applications folder. It comes with every Mac and most of us never use it. If you hook your iOS device up and start that app you will find a very easy way to delete your photo’s (JUST REMEMBER – those videos were never imported by Photo Stream!) In fact you will see that using this app you can import pictures (and those videos), rotate them, and delete them. Plus you can select all or some. Another bonus is that Image Capture is really fast! Take a look at the screen shot below to see what your options look like. There are even other options available. Things like having Image Capture open automatically when you hook up your iPhone or iPad, you can import the media to a folder or even directly into iPhoto or a different app. Image Capture will even let you make a web page of the media and email pictures as well. This app is capable of many things. Dig around and enjoy.
I will be taking a look at several other apps I have found to deal with getting that media off your iOS device and into your computer in the next couple of days. So stay tuned.
PS…. sorry if you are looking for information about using your iOS device with a PC – I am a user of Macs.