Recovery & Repair
Backup & Restore
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4 Ways to Recover Deleted Photos from iPhone

author Emily Watson
date Friday, November 19, 2021

Even though you are a careful person, you can be careless sometimes and may accidentally delete some important photos on your iPhone. But there's no need to feel regret, at least not now. Thanks to some backup features provided by iPhone, there's a great possibility that you can recover your deleted photos. Even there are some photos that are considered to be “unrecoverable”, you may still be able to retrieve them by using a powerful iPhone photo recovery program.

Here we will show you 4 feasible ways to recover deleted photos from iPhone. For your convenience, the ways are listed in a sequence from the easiest ones to the ones that are more effective but may require some effort.

1. Undelete Photos from Recently Deleted Album on iPhone

It’s believed that most iPhone users know about there is a “Deleted” Album that store the photos deleted once on your iPhone. For those who just change to use iPhone and may be unfamiliar with it, here is a reminder: If your photos are deleted, they are not completely removed until you clear them in the Recently Deleted album, or it’s expired 30 days. That also means that you are able to retrieve them easily before they are permanently gone.

Here is the way to check and recover photos in the Recently Deleted album:

Step 1. Open “Photos” app and go to “Albums”. Scroll down to the end and find the “Recently Deleted” album.

Step 2. Enter this album, select the photos you need and tap “Recover”.

Recover iPhone Photos from Recently Deleted Album

2. Recover Deleted Photos from iCloud Photos

If you have checked the Recently Deleted album and cannot find the photos you want, you can turn to iCloud if you have authorized the service of iCloud Photos. It means that your photos are automatically uploaded and stored in iCloud. Because of the time difference of uploading and syncing, your deleted photos are still likely to appear in iCloud. But this method is usually limited to 40 days.

That is how to recover the removed photos from iCloud:

Step 1. Head to to access Apple’s iCloud services.

Step 2. Sign in to iCloud with your Apple ID and password.

Sign in to iCloud

Step 3. Select “Photo” on the desktop.

Select iCloud Photos

Step 4. Similarly, you will see a bunch of photo categories. Choose the “Recently Deleted” album.

Recently Deleted Photos iCloud

Step 5. Check whether there are the photos you need. If yes, select them and tap “Recover”.

Recover Recently Deleted Photos iCloud

3. Recover Permanently Deleted Photos Without Backup or Restoring

If the two methods above can’t help, you may need to use photo recovery software or restore your iPhone from backup to get the photos back. As restoring requires you to reset your iPhone and most of us don’t want to go that far, we will first suggest you using a reliable third-party iPhone photo recovery tool.

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Compared to the other methods, a recovery tool like FonePaw iPhone Data Recovery can more flexibly and effectively recovery your photos. If you find the photos are completely removed and considered to be “unrecoverable”, it can still help you find them back by scanning and extracting photos from your iPhone, iCloud backup, or iTunes backup.

By scanning your iPhone, there is no need for a backup for iPhone photos. The tool identifies your permanently deleted photos in the iPhone storage, and retrieve them which are marked as “unused space” before overwritten. By scanning the backups, it can let you preview the photos in the backup and partially recover them to your computer.

Read on to see how to use FonePaw iPhone Data Recovery to get back your iPhone photos.

Approach 1: Recover Deleted Photos from iPhone Without Backup

If you don't have an iPhone backup and want to undelete the photos on iPhone, FonePaw iPhone Data Recovery can find the deleted photos on your iPhone and recover them to PC.

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Step 1: Download, install and launch the program

Download and install the software first and link up your iPhone and computer. Then, launch iPhone Data Recovery on your computer.

Step 2: Start to scan

Tap "Start Scan" button, the program will begin to scan your iPhone for all the deleted photos. The scan time depends on the amount of your data.

Scan Your iPhone Deleted Data

Step 3: Preview photos one by one

After scanning out all your iPhone data, you can see both lost and existing images on iPhone. You can refine the results by turning on the button "only display the deleted items" to only preview the deleted photos. If it is needed, you can click other items, such as contacts, messages, call history, notes to find back what you need, too.

Display the Deleted Photos Directly

Step 4: Restore photos from your iPhone

Following step 3, mark down the photos you need and click the "Recover" at the bottom of right corner of the interface. Wait a moment, you can get back all the deleted iPhone photos.

Recover iPhone Lost Data Easily

tips Note:

Approach 2: Recover Deleted Photos from iTunes Backup

This way allows you to recover photos from iTunes backup without restoring.

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Step 1: Select iTunes backup and scan it

Launch iPhone Data Recovery on your computer. Select "Recover from iTunes Backup File" option while operating the program on your computer. Then, all iTunes backups on your computer will be shown.

Choose the iPhone backup with the lost photos that you need. Click "start scan"button to extract photos and everything from the backup.

Choose the iTunes Backup Files to Recover Data

Step 2: Extract deleted photos from iTunes backup

After that, the program will find every photo that stored on your iOS device, be it deleted or still saved in the Photo apps. You can also have a preview of all the data that are existing on your iPhone currently.

Scan Result Overview

Step 3: Preview and regain the deleted iPhone photos

After scanning, click Camera Roll, Photo Stream, Photo Library to view the deleted photos. Mark down the deleted photos and click "Recover" to recover all deleted iPhone photos to the computer.

Recover Data from iTunes Backups

Approach 3: Restore Deleted Photos from iCloud Backup

Also, here is the way that you can retrieve photos from iCloud backup without restoring your phone.

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Step 1: Install the application and log in by entering Apple ID

Run the program and choose "Recover from iCloud Backup File". Then log in your iCloud account with your Apple ID and password. If you forget your Apple ID and password, local Apple retail store might help you.

Download the iCloud Backups

Step 2: Download your iCloud backup

After entering the program, all your iCloud backup files will be found. You can choose to restore photos only from the iPhone backup. Click the button "Download" to download photos from iCloud backup.

Retrieving iCloud Backup

Step 3: Scanning the backup

After the iCloud backup is downloaded, the software will scan the data in the backup automatically.

Scan the iCloud Photos

Step 4: View and retrieve lost picture from iCloud

You can take a preview of the photos and videos one by one until you find the deleted iPhone photos that you need. Choose the photos and click Recover. After a few seconds, all your lost pictures will be extracted and saved on your computer.

4. Restore Deleted Photos from iTunes Backup

As we mentioned above, if you have a iTunes backup that includes your deleted photos, you can also try to restore your iPhone from it. Because iTunes does not allow you to preview what it is in your backup, and restoring may cause data loss on your iPhone, this is the final way that we recommend.

However, if you are sure that your deleted photos are stored in the backup, just have a try. To avoid losing data, we also suggest that you backup your iPhone before you take the restoring.

Step 1. Launch iTunes and connect your iPhone to the computer with an original Apple cable.

Step 2. Click the “Summary” tab, and choose “Backups > Restore Backup”.

Step 3. Select the iPhone backup you need and tap to restore your iPhone. After restoring, go and check your photos.

Restore iPhone from iTunes Backup

tips Note:
  • You can also try to recover iPhone photos from the iCloud backup, which is similarly, to factory reset your iPhone first and then select a backup to restore.

Above are all the 4 ways you need to perform iPhone photo recovery. Verify if your photos are completely deleted from iPhone Recently Deleted album and iCloud photos. If your photos are really gone and you do not want to perform a restoring, try to use an iPhone photo recovery tool. For those who are sure that the deleted photos are stored in the backups, there is also a way to get back photos from the iTunes/iCloud backups.

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5. Tips for Managing iPhone Photos to Avoid Duplicates and Save Space

Photos can take a great part of our iPhone storage. So, better managing the iPhone photos will significantly increase the phone storage space and also reduce the possibility that you might accidentally delete them.

Here are some tips for you to avoid duplicate photos and save up space:

Do Not Double Save Photos

When we use iPhone's HDR mode, we have two photos saved on the phone: the HDR version and the normal version. Or if we use apps like Instagram, we'll have the filtered version and the normal version.

To stop double save photos, we may: go to "Settings" > "Photos&Camera" and disable "Keep Normal Photo". Or toggle off "Save Original Photos" on Instagram.

Turn off Photo Stream

Turning on photo stream means that photos of other iOS devices will be saved on your iPhone as well. So you don't care much about sharing photos among devices, why not go to "Settings" > "Photos&Camera" and disable My Photo Stream? It will save much space.

Turn off Burst Mode

When you're taking a photo, if you hold down the shutter for slightly longer, the camera will automatically take a series of photos. And there is not exactly a way to turn off the burst mode. But we can not use the mode, or when we do, choose one picture when it asks whether to "Keep Everything" or "Keep Only 1 Favorite". If you have deleted burst photos that you need, use iPhone Data Recovery to get back the photos.