Google Photos to Apple iCloud Photos direct transfer tool rolling out next week

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The users of Google’s Photos service will finally be able to send all of their media content collected there directly to Apple’s iCloud Photos. The Google Photos to iCloud Photos transfer tool is again provided thanks to the open-source Data Transfer Project (DTP) stack of the Data Transfer Initiative (DTI) that first made the reciprocal transfers from iCloud Photos to Google Photos a reality.
The new tool will be available starting next week and, according to the new Apple and Google photo collection transfer guidelines, it will allow an easy and direct way to take your entire picture, album, and video collection with you by importing it into the competing service when getting a new device.

How to transfer Google Photos collection to iCloud Photos 

If you got a new iPhone and want to bring your Google Photos content to iCloud, here’s what needs to be done:

  1. Go to Google Takeout and mark which albums you’d like to export
  2. Pick Apple – iCloud Photos as import service and sign in with your Apple ID.
  3. Tap Allow to share permission with Google to add photos and videos to iCloud.
Alternatively, pick Photos under the Recently used Google services or Other Google services entries in your Google Account Dashboard, and tap the Transfer data button.

Apple says that you will get a confirmation email when the Google Photos transfer is complete, while Google reminds that this can take anywhere from a few hours to a few days, depending on the size and complexity of the transfer. 

Your photos and videos will then appear in the Photos app, all tucked in a dedicated album, with the name Import from Google and the date of the actual transfer. Since not all photos and videos can be indexed along with their metadata, if some appear missing, they will most likely be in a folder with the same name in your iCloud Drive storage system.

The Data Transfer Initiative’s open-source Data Transfer Project technology stack counts Apple, Google, and Meta as its founding partners and provides tools like the direct Google Photos to iCloud Photos transfer for billions of their users.


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