Does iCloud Backup Include Photos? How it Works?

Does iCloud backup include photos? This guide will tell you the answer and other relevant information about iCloud backup that you may care about.


By Clara / Updated on December 7, 2023

Share this: instagram reddit

Does an iCloud backup include photos?

If I back up my phone to iCloud and also enable iCloud photo library, are the photos stored twice?

- Question from Apple Community


What does iCloud Backup do?

Is iCloud Backup turned on by default, and what can it do? What happens if I turn off iCloud Backup?

- Question from Reddit

iCloud is an official Apple service that securely syncs and stores your data in the cloud and automatically keeps it up-to-date across all of your devices like iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. When you need to view or access data on your iOS device, you can restore from an iCloud backup.

icloud logo

So, does iCloud backup include photos? This passage covers the answer and a complete guide on how it works. Read on!

Does iCloud backup include photos?

Does iCloud backup pictures? In fact, after the iCloud Backup is enabled, it automatically backs up data such as your photo library, accounts, documents, Home configuration, and settings when the device is connected to power, locked, and on WLAN.

photos icon

However, there is a note you should know if you want to back up your photos to iCloud on your iOS device, you just need to turn on iCloud Photo Library. If you turn on iCloud Photo Library, your photos are already stored in iCloud, so they won't be included in your iCloud backup.

In other words, if you back up your device to iCloud and also enable iCloud Photo Library, your photos will not be stored twice. Your iOS device backup only includes data and settings stored on your device. It doesn’t include data already stored in iCloud.

How does iCloud Backup work?

So iCloud will back up iPhone photos. Then, how to set up iCloud? iCloud Backup makes a copy of the information on your iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. When your device is backed up in iCloud, you can easily set up a new device or restore data on an existing device.

Now, follow the steps below to set up iCloud Backup.

Go to Settings > Tap [your name] > Click iCloud > Tap on iCloud Backup to enable this option. If you are using iOS 10.2 or earlier, just go to Settings > iCloud > Backup.

turn on icloud backup

When the iCloud is set up, you automatically get 5 GB of storage. And then you can use this storage for iCloud backups to keep photos or videos stored in iCloud Photos and documents in iCloud Drive up to date.

Note: To let iCloud Backup work properly, you also need to make sure your device is connected to a stable Wi-Fi network and that you have enough iCloud storage. If the iCloud storage is full, you need to buy more space or switch to managing iCloud storage to free up enough space.

How do I know if my photos are backed up on iCloud?

Usually, if you have iCloud Photos enabled in Settings, it will automatically back up to iCloud over Wi-Fi when you charge the iPhone. But if you want to check if the photos are backed up on iCloud, here are some ways:

>>Find iCloud photos on iPhone

To check if you have backed up your photos, you can go to Photos app on iPhone > Album at the bottom > Recent to view them. Normally, all photos in Recent would be uploaded to iCloud.

>>View photos via a browser

A simple and sure way to view your iCloud photos is to go to the site of This way can also be used to access iCloud Photos on Android phones.

Steps: Open a browser on your PC or phone > Enter the iCloud site > Sign in your Apple ID > Click the icon of Photos to view all of them.

view photos on icloud

>>Check the iCloud photos with iCloud client

You can use the iCloud client to download multiple photos from iCloud to PC or upload photos to iCloud without visiting the website. Follow the steps below:

Step 1: Download iCloud for Windows on your computer > Sign in your Apple ID.

Step 2. Check Photos and then check Download photos, Upload photos, or Create new folders at the Options tab.

Step 3. Open Windows Explorer > Click iCloud Photos on the left panel > Tap Downloads to view your iCloud photos or videos.

icloud photos

Frequently asked questions about iCloud Backup

In addition, there are some frequently asked questions about iCloud Backup that can help you learn more details.

Question 1: Does iCloud backup everything?

An iCloud backup includes the following: app data, settings, home screen, app organization, iMessage, text (SMS), multimedia messages, photos, videos, purchase history for Apple services, and more information stored on your device.
But as mentioned earlier, it does not include information already stored in iCloud, such as contacts, calendars, iCloud photos, etc.

Question 2: Are photos deleted from phone still on iCloud?

If you have iCloud Photos enabled, deleting a photo from an iPhone will also delete it from iCloud and all other devices that use the service. If you want to delete photos from iPhone but not iCloud, you can turn off iCloud Photo Library.

Question 3: What happens if I turn off iCloud backup?

If you disable or stop using iCloud Backup, it will be automatically turned off in iPhone settings, your last backup will be stored for 180 days. If you just turn off iCloud backup on iPhone by yourself, iCloud will stop backing up iPhone to iCloud, and it would do nothing to the old iPhone backups.

You can refer to this guide for more information: What Happens When You Delete iCloud Backup? Be Prudent.

Bonus: Try an iCloud alternative to back up photos easily

Are photos included in iCloud backup? Of course, included. Except for photos, it backs up almost everything on your devices. Imagine how much iCloud storage space it will take? And iCloud Backup requires a strong network connection.

In this case, you can turn to a third-party tool to back up photos to a computer without being limited by space and internet. Here, we recommend you FoneTool.

It is the best iCloud alternative for iOS devices, it not only allows you to back up iPhone/iPad fully or selectively, but also helps you easily transfer data from iPhone to iPhone/iPad/computer.

Why choose FoneTool?

🔥 Preview and select: It allows you to preview and select the photos you really need during backup or restore.
💥 Fully or Slective Backup: This software provides two backup options. You can choose any photo to back up to your PC or  fully back up your iPhone with “Full Backup” feature.
🤔 No data loss: When you restore your iPhone from backup, it cannot do anything with existing files.
⚡ Super high speed: It has very high transfer or backup speed. For example, every 100 photos can be transferred to computer in 2 seconds.
⏹️ Wide compatibility: It will be perfectly compatible with the latest iOS 16/15/14. So, it can also help you to back up iPad data.

Download FoneTool for free and refer to a few quick steps below to back up your iPhone photos.

Download Freeware Win 11/10/8.1/8/7/XP
Secure Download

Step 1. Open FoneTool on your computer, connect iPhone to computer with USB cable and tap Trust on it.

Step 2. Click Photos Backup on the main interface. Then choose Selective Backup.

only photos or all

Step 3. Click the photos icon to select the photos you want to back up, and tap OK.

select pictures

Step 4. Choose a storage path to store your photos on Backup Storage Path, click Start Backup, then the selected photos will be sent to the computer within seconds.

click on backup

enlightened In addition, FoneTool combines more features:

If you want to transfer photos from iPhone to computer to save them, you can click the Transfer to Computer button on the home interface.


If you need to manage your iCloud backups, you can tap My iCloud > Sign in with your iCloud account > Select Manage iCloud.

does icloud backup include photos


Does iCloud backup include photos? Now you should know whether iCloud Backup contains photos. It can back up your iPhone photos not stored in iCloud. However, the iCloud backup may fail due to poor network connection or iCloud storage.

Therefore, you can try to use FoneTool to selectively transfer or backup photos to computer or other external hard drive to keep them. This professional tool keeps your data safe at all times, and you can restore them whenever you need it.

Besides, its Photos Deduplication feature is helpful if you want to remove or stop duplicate photos after sync. Come and try it!