Fix iPhone Not Importing Photos to Windows 11/10/8/7

This guide will explain why iPhone not importing photos to Windows 11/10/8/7 and provides 8 solutions to fix this problem. Then introduce an easier way to transfer iPhone photos to your Windows PC.


By Dylan / Updated on March 27, 2024

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There are many ways to import photos from iPhone to Windows PC: iTunes, Windows Photos, AutoPlay, and more. The most direct way is by clicking Import on the AutoPlay window (Windows 7) or on the Photos app (Windows 11/10/8). But sometimes it will fail. Why iPhone not importing photos?  How to deal with the problem? Refer to the following content to fix it easily.

Why can't import photos from iPhone to Windows 11/10/8/7?


Sometimes, you may find your photos won't transfer from iPhone to PC and you will get some prompts like:

frown There are no photos to import.
frown iPhone internal storage folder (DICM folder) is empty.
frown No new Photos were found.
frown Something went wrong. Try again.


Why can't I get my iPhone photos on my computer?

Photos not importing from iPhone to PC possibly because of one of the following reasons.

indecision Unable to connect USB: If the USB drive is corrupted, or the system is malfunctioning, then you can't view iPhone photos on PC.
indecision Photos are stored in iCloud: If you have enabled the "iCloud Photo Library" and "Optimize iPhone Storage" options on your iPhone, some of your iPhone photos are stored on iCloud. Photos are not actually stored in your iPhone storage.
indecision The amount of transferred data is too large: If you are importing a lot of photos, such as 1000 photos, from iPhone to Mac at one time, the Photos app may get stuck in importing.
indecision OS configuration error: File permissions for the pictures folder on your computer may have been changed because of Windows updates or Apple components are not properly installed on your computer.
indecision Choose the wrong way to import your photos: If the photos on your iPhone were synced from PC via iTunes, they can't transfer back to your computer using iTunes. You will need another way to do this.

How to solve “unable to transfer photos from iPhone to PC” issue

If you found that not all photos importing from iPhone to PC, or your computer doesn't recognize your iPhone because of the above reasons, you can try the following methods.

By the way, if you are using iTunes or a transferring tool to move photos, please make sure you have a valid connection between your PC and iPhone. And you need to allow the PC to access your iPhone photos.


1. For Mac users, if you encounter a similar issue during the iPhone-to-Mac transfer process, you can go to this detailed guide to find solutions: [Solved] Photos not Importing from iPhone to Mac? Fixes Here!
2. If you need a quicker and free way to transfer photos from iPhone to PC directly, you can skip to the next part to finish the process right now.

Solution 1. Import iPhone photos to your computer correctly

We knew that many people can't import photos from iPhone to PC because they don't follow the right steps. And if you do the wrong way, you will be in a difficult situation. Before you start learning other solutions, you can check how to import iPhone photos to Windows PC in the right way.

1. Make sure that you have the latest version of iTunes on your PC. Importing photos to your PC requires iTunes 12.5.1 or later. Connect your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch to your PC using a USB cable.

2. You might need to unlock your iPhone using your passcode. Your PC can’t find the iOS device if the device is locked. You might also see a prompt on the iPhone asking you to Trust This Computer. Tap “Trust” or “Allow” to continue.

3. On your PC, select the “Start” button and then select “Photos” to open the Photos app.

4. Select “Import” > “From a USB Device”, then follow the instructions to pick the items you want to import and select where to save them.

from a usb device

Solution 2. Reset your iPhone's Location & Privacy

On your iPhone, go to Settings > General > Reset > Reset Location & Privacy. After that, re-plug your iPhone into computer and tap Trust on iPhone.

Solution 3. Check your connections and try a different computer 

When you are unable to import photos from iPhone to PC, try to import your photos using a different or new Apple USB cable. If you still don't see the camera entry in the Device Manager, test your iOS device on a different computer. If another computer recognizes the iOS device as a camera, maybe your computer is damaged and you need professional help.

Solution 4. Download the original photos to iPhone

To free up iPhone space, iCloud can keep an original version on iCloud and have a smaller and optimized version on your iPhone. So photos not importing from iPhone to PC because your photos actually are not on your iPhone. 

To download original photos from iCloud, go to the "Settings" app on your iPhone > Choose the Photos option, and tick "Download and Keep Original".

download and keeps original

Solution 5. Turn off iCloud Photos Library

When you transfer photos from iPhone to PC using iTunes, it will not sync iCloud photos. You can go to the site to download the iCloud photos or turn off the iCloud photos library.

To turn off the iCloud Photo Library: 

1. Go to the Settings app.

2. Scroll down and choose "Photos" > Disable "iCloud Photos".

3. Then tap "Download Photos & Videos” to download photos to iPhone.

disable icloud photos and download

Solution 6. Import a smaller selection of photos at one time

Instead of importing all iPhone photos into Mac at one time, select a fraction of photos to import each time. It is easier for the Photos app to handle an importing task in this way.

Solution 7. Update your software

Check for updates to your photo management software. Get the latest version of iTunes; update Apple Mobile Device USB Driver; update your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch; update your PC (photo management software). Then try to import your photos again.

Solution 8. Restart iPhone and PC

Restarting iPhone and PC can help to fix small glitches on the devices, which is very helpful if the Photos app gets stuck importing photos.

Free alternative to fix Windows iPhone photo import not working issue

You may feel the above solutions are complicated. Or they just can't help you out with the problem. Actually, you can turn to another easy tool to move iPhone photos to your computer.

Here we recommend a popular and professional tool - FoneTool to help you efficiently import photos from an iPhone to a Windows 11/10/8/7 laptop or desktop. 

● Fast transfer speed and stable USB connection let you won't get stuck during the process.
● Wide compatibility helps you transfer data between various iPhone/iPad/iPod Touch models and PC or external drive.
● Intuitive and easy-to-use interface allows you to complete the operation within a few clicks.
● Multiple image formats be recognized, like jpg, png, gif, heic, bmp, jpeg, tif, tiff, etc.
● You can also transfer iPhone videos, music, messages, contacts, etc. to PC easily.

Download and install FoneTool on your computer, then follow the guide below on how to import photos from iPhone 15/14/13 to Windows 11/10/8/7 PC.

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

Step 1. Run FoneTool, and select Phone Transfer on the home screen > Find iPhone to PC and click Get Started.

start to transfer

Step 2. Click the plus icon to add photos from iPhone.

Select Files

Step 3. Preview iPhone photos and select ones to transfer. Click OK.

Choose Photos

Step 4. Click Start Transfer to import photos from iPhone.


This is done, very simple and convenient. Anyone can master it.


If you encounter an "iPhone not importing photos" problem when moving photos from iPhone to Windows 11/10/8/7 or not all photos can be imported from iPhone to PC, here are the solutions that have been offered above and you can try them to fix the issue.

If you are looking for a better way to transfer iPhone photos, try FoneTool, which can import not only photos, but also music, contacts, music, etc. from iPhone to PC or vice versa.

In addition, you may get some duplicate photos on iPhone after importing photos, FoneTool can also help you find and remove duplicate photos on iPhone efficiently.