I airdropped a folder of photos from my Macbook to iPhone. The photos are occupying the space (I confirmed from storage info) but they aren't showing up in Photos or in any other application. How can I retrieve them?


  • In storage info, which app seems to have taken them up ? also, Check under Files, and all tabs and albums in photos app.
    – anki
    Dec 15, 2019 at 13:46

1 Answer 1


There are two likely culprits:

  1. The transfer didn’t complete and then the clean up didn’t happen.
  2. The transfer did complete, but the library catalog to show photos is corrupt or was interrupted.

Both cases, the primary way you can clean up is to power down the iPhone - slide to turn it off and let the cleanup / shutdown process run. Then at start, the library often will run a sanity check on next launch and show you what the library has received.

If you were sending hundreds of photos, it’s quite likely the transfer started and once you saw the visual indication that the transfer started, you closed the sending window before the send was complete. When training people to AirDrop, most seem to think they are done when the transfer is just getting started.

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