Searching Photos on Your iPhone

In community group over the weekend one of our members was trying to find a photo on their iPhone from awhile back. I suggested they just search the item name in the Photos app or type the date that the photo was probably taken. Several in the group had no idea this was possible! When iOS 10 was released for the iPhone, Apple introduced photo recognition to your devices. Google Photos was already able to do this but each company uses a different method.

  1. Apple recognizes and tags photos behind the scenes all on the phone. This means that all the data that is being processed is not stored on some server away from your phone. Personally, I appreciate that Apple values my privacy and strives to take the steps necessary to keep this private.
  2. Google processes photos in the cloud. This means that the data is sent to their servers (anonymously), processed, and then the photos are categorized.

Searching Photos

If you go into the photos app on your phone you can click on either Photos in the bottom left or Albums in the bottom right. In the top right of the screen you will see a magnifying class indicating that you can search your photos.

Apple categorizes all the images into your phone and will give you suggestions based on their own categories. For example, if I begin typing the word game then it brings several categories up such as board game, football game, baseball game, etc.

In addition, you can search by date (you can also add a category to this as well). If you type in January then it will pull up all your photos that you have taken in the month of January. You can further refine this by typing in January 2016 to see all photos in that specific month and year.

Finally, you can search by location. Since by default all your photos are geo tagged the location of the photo is included in the photo’s information. So if I type in Springfield it will bring up all my photos taken in Springfield, Illinois.

Go ahead and try different searches to get a feel for what you can and can’t search. Overall, I’ve found the feature very helpful when trying to locate a specific photo.

For more on new features in Apple’s Photos app on your iPhone, iPad, and Mac check out MacStories helpful guide .

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