Is there other ways to sync Apple photos except iCloud?

there is a huge gap of paying for 200gb iCloud and the next tier which is 2T.

I am trying to reduce / limit my iCloud storage need to below 200gb, but it is hard. Apple photos alone takes up 190gb and growing. I can delete the photos on iCloud but I believe I would not get update photos taken from iPhone and would not be able to share with iPad and other apple devices.

Is there any way to get around this?

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I remember My Photo Stream which syncs your most recent 1,000 photos to devices signed in to your iCloud account, but it was not as seamless as iCloud Photos.

Alternatively, it is also possible to sync photos using Finder:

IIRC, both these methods do not work with Live Photos and only syncs full-size photos.

IMHO if you’re gonna drink the iCloud kool-aid, you should be prepared to go all the way. And I intend that remark to be in no way derogatory.


You might be stuck (agree that might not be so bad), but I bet you can trim 100GB if you want.

I would use photo library de-duplication/library curating software to remove dupes, blurry photos, videos you don’t want to keep, etc. and see where you end up before you start making difficult choices. I personally like Gemini on iOS but there are multiple good iOS and Mac options.

I’d also look in backups to see if any old/unused devices still are using storage.

50GB In DTTG also seems excessive to me—did something accidentally get synced via iCloud? Could you split a huge database into one you actually need to reference on mobile, and everything else?

yeah, agreed with everything mentioned here. More housekeeping task to do :kissing_closed_eyes:

My first culprit would be the backups. All my devices basically work with data that is already on iCloud. So that leaves apps (easily recoverable) and local storage which I can always recover from iCloud. So I don’t backup my devices.

Still, at some point, you will have to up your tier. Wether it is one year from now or two years is what you can measure to decide if you should be doing these drastic measures now. I went with the 200Gb doing all types of tricks until I decided it was not the hassle.

that’s exactly what I was thinking too. Apple (and Google) are smart. They do not offer anything between 200gb and 2Tb. Hence I am moving the backups to other Cloud (B2 currently but looking at Polycloud too). Apple Photos is the main hurdle for me to stay within 200gb

the other perspective of iCloud storage is that I paid for 2T but I am only using 320gb. I cannot think of a way to practically utilize the remaining 1.68TB in a useful way. I cannot use that for Cloud storage that would not load up my local SSD.

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just saw this tweet

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just wondering any one has tried Photoprism

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It may not be as smooth as iCloud,but you can choose Smugmug or Zenfolio. You can auto upload all your photos and videos and theybdo have unlimited photo storage features. You can share to anyone from their websites and have more granular control if you want too.

I personally use Smugmug. I have no affiliation with any of the ones mentioned above.

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I’ve been thinking about getting that set up on my parents, as photos are taking up lots of space on their devices, but I don’t see them paying for iCloud+ (except they do pay for Apple TV+. I already have their PC backed up to my server through Arq.

In future, please can you just page the URL to the tweet? It auto unfurls and displays the content which is then accessible to screen readers and search :wink: (Example below)

ah, got it, thanks. Will follow that in the future