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How To Transfer Photos From Your Android Phone To Your PC: The Essential Guide

Do you take a lot of pictures with your Android phone? Want to quickly transfer photos from your Android phone to your PC? No problem! Learn the quickest and the easiest ways to copy pictures from Android to desktop computers. 

Gone are the days when we used to have a separate camera and a separate phone. Unless you are a professional photographer, you take all the pictures with your mobile phone and this is your only camera. Am I right? 

The quality of pictures taken with mobile phones is getting so much better that we don't need a separate camera any more. The pictures we take with our Android phone are simply good enough. 

However, there is one thing we still need to take care of, i.e. we need to properly manage and back up our photos so that we never lose them or we don't unnecessarily overload our phone memory with thousands of heavy pics from our holidays. 

In this tutorial I will show you how to transfer photos from Android to PC in a few easy ways and give you a few valuable tips for better management of your pictures. Let's get started! 

This tutorial is ideal for less advanced but ambitious Android users who want to learn more about their devices and become even more aware and smart users.

Share This Tutorial If You Like It

If you like this tutorial and find it helpful, please share it with your friends. Here are a few other tutorials and articles that might interest you:

Transferring Photos From Android To PC

There are really lots of ways to transfer photos from Android devices to PCs. In this tutorial I will show you my four favorite methods (which are both quick and easy).

Basically, you can transfer pictures from your phone either manually (using the USB cable) or wirelessly (over Wi-Fi or Bluetooth). I will show you how each method works step by step. Let's begin.

1#: How To Transfer Photos From Android To PC Using USB

This is the most basic method that will almost always work. If you have a lot of photos to transfer from your Android phone (like  a few gigabytes), I suggest using this method.

When it comes to the speed of transfer this is the quickest method because you don't need to rely on the speed of your Internet connection. 

What You Need To Transfer Pictures With This Method

  • Your Android device (phone or tablet)
  • Your desktop/PC computer
  • A working USB cable
How To Transfer Photos From Your Android Phone To Your PC Manually

Got everything ready? Awesome! Here is what you need to do right now:

  • Turn both your devices on and prepare your USB cable. Make sure that your USB cable is OK. 
  • Connect your Android phone to your desktop computer/PC with the USB cable. 
  • Your computer should recognize your phone and display it under Devices and drives and ask you to choose what happens with the device once you connect it. 
How To Transfer Photos From Your Android Phone To Your PC: Connecting your phone to PC
How To Transfer Photos From Your Android Phone To Your PC: phone connected to PC

If you are experiencing any problems with connecting your phone to your computer, check this tutorial out: Android USB Connection Problems 

  • Your phone will also ask you what you want to use the USB connection for. To transfer photos you can choose either File transfer or Photo transfer
How To Transfer Photos From Your Android Phone To Your PC: USB connection

If you choose Photo transfer, your phone will now appear under Devices and drives like a camera (its icon will change into camera). When you open the folder, you will now be able to browse only the photos/picture and videos.

How To Transfer Photos From Your Android Phone To Your PC: Photo transfer

This is very convenient because you don't have to look for the folder where pictures are stored (like you would need to do if you chose File transfer). If you only want to transfer pictures from your phone, choose Photo transfer

How To Transfer Photos From Your Android Phone To Your PC Manually: Photo transfer
  • You can now navigate either to the DCIM or Pictures folder. In most Android phones you will find photos in DCIM and screenshots (as well as other pictures) in Pictures
How To Transfer Photos From Android To PC Using USB
  • To transfer photos from your Android phone to you PC, just select the desired folder, photo or group of photos, copy & paste it onto your PC. If you want to transfer all the photos, you can simply drag & drop the whole DCIM folder to your PC. 
How To Transfer Photos From Android Phone To PC
  • Now you need to wait until all the photos are copied/transferred to your PC. Once it's finished, it's a good idea to create a special folder on your PC drive where you will only store the copy of your photos. 
Transferring Photos From Android To PC

This is how you can manually transfer photos from your Android device to your desktop computer. But what do you do if you don't have a USB cable at hand? Let's find this out! 

2#: How To Transfer Photos From Android To PC Via Wi-Fi

Transferring Photos From Android To PC Using Some Cloud Service

There are a lot of cloud services (many of them free) you can use to wirelessly transfer photos from your Android phone to your PC. The most popular cloud services/drives you can use include:

All of the above services let you use usually tens or even hundreds of gigabytes of their storage for free. You usually have to pay for them only if you need really a lot of space. 

I am a fan of Google and use lots of their services, so I am using Google Drive as an example cloud service for this part of the tutorial. The idea in the case of almost any cloud drive/service is similar:

  • You need to create a free account with the service.
  • You need to download the Android app of the service to your phone. Here are the links to Google Play apps for the above four services: Google Drive, Amazon Drive, Microsoft OneDrive, Dropbox
  • You log in to the app using the credentials for the account you have just created. 
  • You move/copy the files on your phone to the app/service, wait until they upload and browse the content on your desktop/PC version of the cloud service. 

What You Need To Transfer Pictures With This Method

  • Your Android device (phone or tablet)
  • Your desktop/PC computer
  • Stable Internet connection in both devices 
  • Account on some cloud service (e.g. Dropbox, Google Drive etc.)
How To Transfer Photos From Android To PC Via Wi-Fi

In the example below I will show you how to transfer pictures from your Android phone to your PC with the use Google Drive. Here is what you need to do step by step:

  • Go to Google Drive on your desktop computer to make sure that the app works/you have access to drive and files on it. 
  • Click on Go to Google Drive to log in to your drive. 
How To Transfer Photos From Android To PC Over Wi-Fi: Google  Drive
  • Log in using your Google account credentials (it's best to use the same Google account that you added to your Android phone upon setup). 
How To Transfer Photos From Android To PC Over Wi-Fi: Log in to Google Drive
  • If everything is OK, you should see the files/folders on your Google Drive (if you have added any). 
  • Now you need to install the Google Drive app on your Android phone (if you haven't installed it yet). It's best to install it straight from Google Play. Use can either use this link or simply type "Google Drive" in Play Store app and follow installation instructions. In most Android phones Google Drive is a preinstalled app. 
How To Transfer Photos From Android To PC Via Wi-Fi: Installing Google Play
  • Open the app and set it up (view the instructions and click DONE). If you are using the same Google account you added to your phone you will not even have to log in when you open the app. 
How To Transfer Photos From Android To PC Over Wi-Fi: Google Drive
  • In many cases you will also get 100GB of free storage (this is the discount LG phone users get when they log in from their device).  Click Redeem this offer and you will now be able to browse the content of your Google Drive. 
How To Transfer Photos From Android To PC Via Wi-Fi: setting up Google Drive
  • To transfer photos from your Android phone to your PC using Google Drive, click on the plus button and then on Upload
How To Transfer Photos From Android To PC Via Wi-Fi: uploading new photos using Google Drive
  • All you need to do now is navigate to the folder with the photos you want to transfer to your PC. When you click on Upload, you will be moved the Recent folder. Click on the three lines in the left top corner and then choose Gallery to browse all the pictures on your phone.
How To Transfer Photos From Android To PC Via Wi-Fi: uploading new photos using Google Drive
  • You can now choose which photos you want to transfer using Google Drive. I have selected several photos from my today's bike trip. When you finish selecting photos, click OK
How To Transfer Photos From Android To PC Via Wi-Fi: uploading new photos using Google Drive
  • You will see the upload progress right away. Your photos are now in the main folder of your Google Drive. 
How To Transfer Photos From Android To PC Via Wi-Fi: uploading new photos using Google Drive
  • To access the photos from your desktop computer, go to Google Drive on your PC. You should now see the photos in the main folder. 
How To Transfer Photos From Android To PC Over Wi-Fi: Google Drive

Transferring Photos From Android To PC Without USB (Using Google Photos)

There is also a similar and a lot easier way of transferring photos from your Android phone to your PC wirelessly.

All you need for this method to work is to have a Google account and set it up to use Google Photos. You can do it within seconds and all your photos will be automatically transferred to Google Photos. Let me show you how to do it. 

What You Need To Transfer Pictures With This Method

  • Your Android device (phone or tablet)
  • Your desktop/PC computer
  • Stable Internet connection in both devices (preferably Wi-Fi)
  • Active Google account
How To Transfer Photos From Android To PC Without USB

Here is what you need to do to transfer photos using Google Photos:

  • Make sure have added your Google account to your Android phone. You most certainly did it as this is the first thing your phone asks you to do when you turn it on for the first time. 
  • Download Google Photos app from Google Play to your Android. In most Android phones the Google Photos app is already installed. You can either install the app using the link or simply open Play Store, type "Google Photos" and follow installation instructions. 
How To Transfer Photos From Android To PC Without USB: Google Photos
  • Open Google Photos and click on the three lines in the top left corner to access settings. When the left panel opens, click on Settings
How To Transfer Photos From Android To PC Without USB: Google Photos
  • Now click on Back up & sync and make sure that Back up & sync is on (use the toggle button to activate it). When this feature is enabled all the photos you take with your Android phone will automatically be backed up to Google Photos whenever your phone is connected to the Internet (over Wi-Fi). 
Transferring Photos From Android To PC Using Google Photos
  • If you have unlimited data plan, you can also activate Photos under Cellular data back up. If you do that, the photos will always be uploaded/copied to Google Photos whenever your phone is connected to the Internet (whether over Wi-Fi or mobile data). 

Transferring Photos From Android To PC Via E-mail

Google Photos is probably the most convenient way of transferring/copying photos from Android devices to your PC/desktop computer.

However, if you quickly want to transfer one or two photos to your PC wirelessly, you might as well use your e-mail box. 

What You Need To Transfer Pictures With This Method

  • Your Android device (phone or tablet)
  • Your desktop/PC computer
  • Stable Internet connection in both devices (preferably Wi-Fi)
  • Active Google account or e-mail at some other service
Transferring Photos From Android To PC Via E-mail

This is how you can quickly transfer photos from your Android phone with the use of your e-mail box (I am using Gmail and my Gmail account in this example). 

  • Navigate to the gallery in your Android phone and select the photo or photos you want to quickly transfer. On the example below I have selected my three photos (from a bike trip today). 
How To Transfer Photos From Android To PC Via E-mail
  • Now click on SHARE. You can now see a lot of different possibilities of sharing these photos (including adding them to Google Drive we have just talked about). Since we are going to transfer this file via e-mail, click on Gmail
Transferring Photos From Android To PC Via E-mail: Using Gmail
  • You are now composing a new e-mail with the selected images added as attachments. The easiest way to share these images is to simply send this e-mail to yourself. 
Transferring Photos From Android To PC Via E-mail: Gmail
  • Open your e-mail box on your desktop computer and download the attachments. Note that you really don't even have to send these photos to yourself. You can only save them as drafts and then access e-mail drafts on your desktop and download the photos.

    Congratulations, you have successfully transferred your photos from your Android phone to your PC. :)

3#: How To Transfer Photos From Android To PC Via Bluetooth

The above methods of sending photos to your PC over Wi-Fi are probably the most convenient. However, sometimes the Wi-Fi signal may not be strong enough or you may be outside of your mobile data range. 

What you can do then is send your photos using Bluetooth. Let me show you how to do it. 

What You Need To Transfer Pictures With This Method

  • Your Android device (phone or tablet)
  • Your desktop/PC computer
  • Bluetooth enabled in both devices 
How To Transfer Photos From Android To PC Over Bluetooth

Note that this method will be slower than sending photos using the USB cable or broadband Internet connection (Wi-Fi).

However, it will be ideal if you want to transfer just a couple of photos and cannot rely on Internet connection. 

Here is what you need to do:

  • Enable Bluetooth on your Android phone. In most cases you just need to go to quick settings (swipe down from the top of the screen) and click on the Bluetooth icon. If it's grayed-out it's inactive. If it's black or bold, it's probably ON. 
How To Transfer Photos From Android To PC Over Bluetooth: enabling Bluetooth
  • Enable Bluetooth on your PC. If you use Windows 10 like me, click on the Windows button and type Bluetooth. Click on Bluetooth settings like shown in the screenshot below. 
How To Transfer Photos From Android To PC Over Bluetooth: Bluetooth settings on PC
  • Make sure Bluetooth is on. If it's not, use the toggle button to activate it. 
How To Transfer Photos From Android To PC Over Bluetooth: enabling Bluetooth on PC
  • Before you send the photos, you need to pair both your devices. Open Bluetooth settings on your phone and you should see your PC/desktop computer under AVAILABLE DEVICES. To pair both devices click on your computer name. 
How To Transfer Photos From Android To PC Over Bluetooth: pairing devices
  • Go to the Bluetooth settings in your computer once again and click on your phone name this time to confirm that you want to pair both devices. 
How To Transfer Photos From Android To PC Over Bluetooth: pairing devices
  • Confirm Bluetooth pairing request both on your phone and your desktop computer. 
How To Transfer Photos From Android To PC Over Bluetooth
  • Go to the gallery in your Android phone and choose which photos you want to transfer to your PC. Select the photos in the similar way you selected them in the above part of the tutorial and click SHARE. This time I want you to choose Bluetooth
How To Transfer Photos From Android To PC Via Bluetooth
  • If you have completed the above steps correctly, you will see your PC/desktop computer under AVAILABLE DEVICES. Click on your computer name to transfer the photos. 
Transferring Photos From Android To PC Via Bluetooth

You have just transferred your photos to your PC over Bluetooth. Congratulations!

I hope this tutorial was helpful and you managed to transfer any photos from your Android phone to your PC. If you have any questions or problems, feel free to ask. You can leave me a comment in the comment box below. I would love to hear from you!


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