Three Easy Ways to Transfer Photos from Your iPhone to PC

Stop emailing photos to yourself. Here are three ways to automate photo syncing with your PC.

By Dave Johnson
Mon, September 03, 2012

PC World — They say that the best camera is the one you have with you. By that measure, smartphones are the best cameras around. As I've previously reported, iPhones are the number one camera used to upload photos to Flickr, and I can attest to the fact that it fits in my pocket better than my Nikon D7000. In the past, I've given you some advice on how to take better smartphone photos, which is great, but the most vexing part of using the iPhone is getting photos onto your PC. Rather than emailing photos back to your PC all the time, try one of these three handy ways to automate the process.

Bump to Transfer

There are two kinds of smartphone photographers: People who consider smartphone photos disposable, and mostly keep them only on the phone, and people who want all of their photos copied to the PC for posterity.

If you fall into the first category (you only occasionally want to get certain photos onto your PC) then this solution is for you. Imagine that you want to copy a photo from your iPhone to your computer. Instead of emailing it to yourself, or some other clumsy solution, you could just tap the phone on your PC's keyboard, and your photo would immediately be sent to its destination. To do that, you need a free iOS app named Bump.

Bump was originally designed to let you share contact information with another iPhone owner by bumping the phones together. The app uses accelerometer and location data to know to exchange information with the nearby phone. But in a recent update, Bump now copies photos to the PC if you use the phone to tap the space bar when your browser is open to the Bump page. (You must use Chrome, Firefox, or Safari.)

Use Dropbox

Bump is great, but as I've already pointed out, it is efficient only if you occasionally use it. If you want all of your photos on your PC, there are better options.

One such choice is the venerable cloud storage service Dropbox. Pretty much everyone knows about Dropbox, the site that gives you 2GB of online storage for free. It also offers oodles of opportunities to get gigabytes of additional storage without forcing you to break out your credit card. A client app makes it easy to drag and drop files to the cloud from within Windows.

What many people don't know is that a recent update to Dropbox's iOS app can automatically upload all of your photos and video to Dropbox for you. All you need to do is start the Dropbox app on your iPhone or iPad and any new photos and videos will automatically get transferred to Dropbox (and therefore any PCs to which you are syncing). This is a truly amazing feature. For the first time, I can now get to all of my phone's photos from wherever I am, on whatever device or PC I happen to be using. And the Dropbox app is, of course, free.

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