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How to transfer photos from iPhone to SD card [Easy-to-follow]

To move your photos to SD card from iPhone, you can use Windows File Explorer, a professional iOS transfer tool, or an SD card adapter for iPhone.

Kylee Jones Updated on Aug 17, 2023 7:45 PM

Quick Answer: If you have a computer nearby, the most convenient way to transfer iPhone photos to an SD card is by using iPhone Data Transfer, a reliable third-party tool designed to move photos and videos between your iPhone and SD card.

If you want to transfer photos from iPhone to SD card without computer, try to use SD card reader on iPhone.

You may be reluctant to delete photos stored on your iPhone and don't want to buy additional cloud storage space, so what should you do? In addition to transferring photos from iPhone to an external hard drive, saving your iPhone pictures to your SD card can also be an efficient and convenient method.

In this article, we will focus specifically on how to transfer photos from iPhone to SD card, including utilizing an SD card reader for iPhone, the File Explorer app for Windows computers, and a third-party tool on both PC and Mac. 

So, let's unlock the key to transferring photos from iPhone to SD card with or without a computer.

How to save iPhone photos to SD card on Windows via File Explorer

If you have a Windows 7/8/10/11 computer and want to transfer iPhone photos to an SD card, you need to connect your iPhone and SD card to a computer, then manually copy the photos and videos from the iPhone Camera Roll (the DCIM folder) to the SD card using Windows File Explorer (also called Windows Explorer).

Tip: If your images are saved in iCloud but not your phone, then you need to download iCloud photos to iPhone before moving them to your SD card.

Follow the steps below to find out how to back up iPhone pictures to an SD card.

Step 1. Plug your iPhone to a PC using a lightning cable. When a prompt appears on your iPhone asking whether to trust the computer, tap on "Trust," and enter your iPhone lock screen passcode if needed.

Step 2. Connect the SD card to your computer. Or you can put the SD card into a card reader and plug it into your computer's USB port if there is not a port adaptation.

Step 3. Open the "File Explorer" app. You can find it in the "Start" menu or press "Windows + E" to launch it on your computer.

Step 4. In "This PC," click on "Apple iPhone." It might be your iPhone's name in some older versions of Windows computers.

Step 5. Double-click "Internal Storage," then get into the "DCIM" folder. Later, find the photos which could be in any folder like "100APPLE" or a number of dates.

Step 6. Copy the pictures on your iPhone. To select multiple images at once, hold down your mouse and drag the area that includes the photos you prefer, then press "Ctrl + C" to copy them.

Step 7. Put the photos in the SD card. Go to an SD card file on your Windows computer, and press the shortcut key "Ctrl + V."

Tip: The way to save photos from iPhone to SD card through File Explorer on Windows PC and laptop can be difficult in sorting photos by type. It means you can only open every file in Internal Storage > DCIM, and drag the photos you'd like to transfer to SD cards.

How to transfer photos from iPhone to SD card on PC & Mac

For Windows users, transferring photos from an iPhone to an SD card via File Explorer can be a convenient way. However, it's hard to use File Explorer to do so when you need to transfer a larger number of high-quality photos in HEIC format.

iPhone Data Transfer is a third-party tool that can help make it more efficient and straightforward to transfer iPhone photos to an SD card. With this software, you can easily copy photos, videos, and other files between any iOS device and external storage devices like an SD card.

Download Now!

for macOS | for Windows

Key features for iPhone Data Transfer to get photos from iPhone to SD card:

  • Enable to transfer a number of photos selectively from iPhone's Camera Roll or Photo Library.
  • Transfer iPhone photos without compressing the quality.
  • No need for network connection to export pictures from iPhone to SD card.

To save your pictures to your SD card, all you need is a USB cable with a PC or a Mac.

1. Connect your iPhone and your SD card to your computer.

2. On your computer, open iPhone Data Transfer, and select the "Photos" option.

3. Click "Export to PC" ("Export to Mac" for Mac computer), then choose the location (SD card) to move photos on it.

Transfer photos from iPhone to SD card by using SD card reader for iPhone

To save photos to an SD card from your iPhone, you'll need an SD card adapter that's compatible with your iPhone if you don't have a computer available.

Don't miss: How to delete photos from iPhone but not iCloud

Here're the steps for transferring photos from iPhone to SD card without a computer.

1. Insert your SD card into the SD card reader.

2. Plug the SD card reader into your iPhone's charging port.

3. Open the Photos app on your iPhone, and select the photos you want to transfer to the SD card.

4. Tap the "Share" icon (a square with an upward arrow) at the bottom left corner of the screen.

5. Scroll down and tap "Save to Files."

6. Select the location where you want to save the photos (it is usually called "NO NAME"), and tap "Add" to put the photos to the SD card.


To export pictures from iPhone, transferring photos from iPhone to USB flash drive is not the only option. In this article, we've discussed 3 easy ways to move photos from iPhone to an SD card. Among them, iPhone Data Transfer stands out for its powerful transfer abilities, allowing you to quickly import pictures from your iPhone to your SD card, or vice versa.

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