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How to Transfer Photos From Your iPad to Your Mac


Unlike the apps, ebooks, and podcasts you might download using your iPad, not all photos automatically sync with your computer through iTunes Specifically, the photos stored within the “camera roll” folder on your iPad are not accessible through iTunes and therefore cannot be copied.

These photos include all those you save while surfing online as well as those you take with the built-in camera on your iPad 2. Any videos you take with your iPad 2 are also saved in this folder, which does not show up within iTunes even with your iPad connected to your computer.

There are several solutions available, the first of which is to do nothing. Many iPad users do not consider the photos valuable enough to save and choose to take their chances with iPad crashes, breakage, and theft.

Alternatively, several iPad apps and computer programs are available to help with the transfer of files. Most charge a fee, and those that don’t generally contain a limitation as to the size or number of photos that can be transferred.

Of course, you could opt to transfer the photos via email. But, depending on the number of photos you are trying to transfer, that can be a time-consuming task.

Thankfully, there is a free and unlimited option for Mac users. Image Capture, a program that comes preinstalled on most Macs, can handle the transfers for you. Located within the Applications list on your Mac, Image Capture can be used to transfer any or all of your photos from your iPad’s “camera roll” folder.

Here’s how to do it. First, connect your iPad to you computer using your dock connector. Next, open Image Capture on your computer. Image Capture should recognize your iPad and list all the photos that are available. Select the photos you wish to transfer, confirm the destination folder, and then click on “import.” Or, to skip the selection process, simply click on “import all.” Additionally, if space is at a premium on your iPad, you can select the option to delete the photos from your iPad once they are transferred.

When Image Capture is finished processing the photos, check the folder to make sure all the photos (and videos) transferred successfully. As long as you have sufficient disk space available, though, you shouldn’t experience any problems.


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