Buh-Bye Apple PhotoStream

Buh-Bye Apple PhotoStream: a reader asks…

I received an email from Apple that they are shutting down My Photo Stream soon. I have thousands of photos in my Photo Library, are these at risk? What should I do?

Your photos are not at risk, and you don’t need to do anything. Over the years, Apple has refined and improved the image and photo management experience using Apple devices. You may remember iPhoto? My Photo Stream is similarly an older technology that is now being discontinued. However, your Apple Photo Library will remain safe and all your photos and videos in your library will continue to be available on your iPhone, iPad, Mac, and even on a PC (with the iCloud app).


What My Photo Stream did was create a copy of “new” photos that showed up on your devices in a My Photo Stream folder. It was limited to a certain number of photos, and was really just an earlier attempt at managing your photo library. The current Photos app (on current and recent versions of iOS, macOS, iPadOS, WatchOS, iCloud.com, and via the PC’s iCloud app) is much superior and allows you to view your entire library on any device logged into the same Apple ID.

As your email from Apple shows, if you have iOS 8.3 or later, iPadOS 8.3 or later, and macOS 10 Yosemite or later, you have the Apple Photos app and you likely don’t even see My Photo Stream in the settings anymore. There’s really no worry, as using the modern Apple Photos app gives you full visibility and control over all your photos and videos, not just some of them.

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