With the volume of photos that we take every day/week/month/year, two problems arise for most of the smartphone-carrying population.
- Your digital photos aren’t safely backed up (and you’d be pretty devastated to lose them in a tech mishap).
- Your digital photos are mostly lumped into a giant pile of “I’ll sort these, one day”. It’s the modern-day version of piling photos into a shoebox.
Remember the days of taking photos, developing film, and making photo albums?
Given that each of us now carries in our pockets these amazing devices that can capture moments via digital photos and videos… all day, every day… it’s hard to remember that we used to spend time organizing our photos.
I’m going to come right out and say that there’s no good reason your phone’s digital photos aren’t properly backed up.
PART ONE: Let’s walk through exactly how to back up your phone’s digital photos – for free – using Dropbox.
1. Get a Dropbox Account and Install the app.
- If you don’t already have a Dropbox account, go sign up for their free version. Did I mention that it’s free? 2 GB of storage!
- Install the Dropbox app on your computer.
- Install the Dropbox app on your smartphone or tablet or both (wherever you’re taking your photos).
- Here’s a handy list of system requirements for running Dropbox.
2. Turn on “Camera Uploads” on the Dropbox phone app.
- Go to “settings” on your phone app, and turn on “Camera Uploads”.
- Pro tip: choose to upload photos over “wifi only” unless you’ve got unlimited cell phone data!
- View Dropbox’s instructions on how to turn on “Camera Uploads” for your particular device.
Once your Dropbox account has nearly 2 GB used up, simply move the photos out of the Dropbox folder on your computer to another (secure!) location, in order to make room for your photos to continue syncing/uploading.
Note that unless you’re storing your photos in Dropbox or some other cloud-synced application, storing your photos just on your computer’s hard drive does not make them secure.
It’s as simple as that – Turn on Dropbox’s “Camera Uploads” – Have your phone’s digital photos and videos backed up to Dropbox and your computer.
PART TWO: Now that your phone’s digital photos are backed up into your Dropbox account, and are stored on your computer… what’s the easiest way to organize them?
Organize Photos? Why would you do that?!
The answer is: no one wants to look for a needle in a haystack, spending hours going down the rabbit hole of reminiscing as you end up looking AT photos when you’re really looking FOR photos.
Many phones will name the files with the date, or you can sort by the date that the file was created. But searching for photos by date is not exactly the most helpful long-term solution! And, what about the 7 versions of that each photo that you’re prone to taking?
Unfortunately, there’s no single solution, but here are some options …