How to Transfer Photos From iPhone to Android

Yes, you can keep your photos during the switch

While iOS users can easily share photos using the Apple Airdrop feature, sending images from an iPhone to an Android device used to be challenging, but not anymore. Google Photos is now available on the App Store. Compatible with both iOS and Android devices, it's an easy way to transfer images across both platforms.

Instructions in this article apply to macOS High Sierra (10.13) and later and Google Chrome  80.0.3987.87.

How to Share Images With Google Photos

Most people only want to share a few images at a time with friends and family. Here's how:

  1. On your iPhone, open Google Photos.

  2. Tap and hold to select the photos you wish to share.

  3. Tap Share, then select the contact you want to send the images to.

  4. To send a message with the photos, type it in the Say Something field. When you're ready to send the photos, tap Send.

    Google photo selected, share to contact, send button in iOS
  5. Your contact receives a notification on their Android device. Once they tap it, they see your shared photos and can choose to add them to their Google Photos library. They can also reply to your message and send photos.

How to Create a Shared Album in Google Photos

If you want to send many photos at once to someone with an Android device, and you want to receive some in return, create a Shared Album in Google Photos instead of a message.

  1. Open Google Chrome and select the 9-dot grid (Google apps) in the upper-right corner.

    Google Apps button in Chrome
  2. Select Google Photos.

    Google Photos icon in Chrome
  3. At the top of the screen, select Create.

    Create button in Chrome/Google Photos
  4. Select Shared Album.

    Shared Album menu item in Chrome/Google Photos
  5. In the Add a title field, give the album a name.

    Add a title field in Chrome/Google Photos
  6. Select Add photos.

    Add Photos button in Chrome/Google Photos
  7. To add a photo, select it at the upper-left corner of each photo. (Hover the mouse over the preview image to display a white checkmark in the upper-left corner of a photo.)

    Checkmark in Chrome/Google Photos
  8. After you select the photos for your new album, select Done in the upper-right corner.

    Done button in Chrome/Google Photos
  9. To share the album, select Share.

    Choosing Share to share out the photo album.
  10. Add the name, phone number, or email address of the recipients of the shared folder, then press Enter.

    Adding a person to share in Google Photos.
  11. You can enter additional recipients by selecting + (the Plus sign). 

    Adding an additional person to the shared album.
  12. You can also Add a message at the bottom to your recipients' invitation.

    Entering a message to the photo album share invitation.
  13. When you're ready to send, select Send.

    Sending the photo album share invitation.

How to Automatically Share Images With a Google Photos Partner

Google Photos lets you add a partner to your account. This person automatically receives certain photos, so you don't have to manually share them every single time. To add someone to a partner account:

  1. Select the 3-horizontal bars (Main menu) in the upper-left corner, then select Manage your library. (Alternatively, select Sharing.)

    Sharing and Manage your Library tabs in Google Photos in Chrome
  2. Under Add partner account, select Get started.

    Get Started button under Add partner account
  3. In the To field, enter a name or email address, then select Next.

    To field and Next button in Google Photos on Chrome
  4. Select what type of access to grant: All photos, Photos of specific people, or Only show photos since a certain day.

    When you select All Photos, any photo you take shows up in your partner's library. Consider using one of the other options, unless sharing your entire collection is your intention.

    Settings to choose which photos to share
  5. Select Next.

  6. Confirm the details of the partner setup, then select Send invitation.

    Send Invitation button

Once confirmed, the Android user receives a notification to accept the invitation. After accepting, they can see the shared library in their Google Photos menu.

Selecting the shared library displays all of its images. When you take photos that include any of the people you selected, the photos automatically show up in the partner library. The Android user can then save those images to their Google Photos library.

To end partner sharing, go to the partner library on either device, then select Menu > Settings > Remove partner > Confirm.

Remove partner link in Settings