Get to know the new Photos app in iOS 7 [Video]

One of the major new features in iOS 7 is the all-new Photos app to go along with the redesigned Camera app, which we covered few days back.

If you were unhappy with the endless stream of photos in your Camera roll that you’ve clicked over the years, then Apple has finally come to the rescue in iOS 7 with “faster, easier, and more delightful ways to scroll down memory lane”.

Here’s what new in iOS 7’s Photos app:

  • The first thing you will notice is probably the all-new icon for the Photos app. The sunflower icon makes way for a multi-color flower icon.


  • When you launch the Photos app, you will notice the familiar iOS 7 user interface with the white background and flatter design.
  • The Photos app is divided into three tabs: Photos, Shared and Albums instead of Photos, Photo Stream and Places we have currently.
    • Photos: In this tab, you can access the photos from your Camera roll i.e. photos and videos you took on your iOS device, or saved from your email, text message, webpage, or screenshot. The default tab is Photos.
    • Shared: In this tab, you can access the photos and videos that you’ve shared or that others shared with you using iCloud Photo Sharing.
    • Albums: Quick access to the albums that you’ve manually created. You can also access the Camera Roll, your photo stream and Panoramas from this tab.
    • Apple has removed the Places tab. You can access Places from the Collections, Moments and Years view, which I’ll explain shortly.
  • In iOS 7, the Photo app automatically organizes photos into Collections, Moments and Years, so you don’t have an endless stream of photos in your Camera roll. 
    • Collections is a grouping of moments such as your trip to San Francisco. The photos are organized into Moments according to date and location. Collections are either labeled by the date or date range or by the location, with the date range to the right.


    • Collections is a grouping of distinct moments, so the Moments view groups photos based on the location or a date. So for example, on your trip to San Francisco, if you visited Union Square and AT&T Park, photos and videos taken at each of these locations will be individually grouped together as a Moment. Moments are either labeled by a date or by the location with the date to the right.
    • Years is quite simply, photos and videos are grouped by year. For example: 2013, 2012 etc. It displays a collage made up of tiny thumbnails from the photos and videos taken during that year. Years are labeled with the year Tapping on it will take you to the Collections view.


    • Photos in each view is displayed as a collage of tiny thumbnails. You can long tap on the thumbnail in any of the views to see a slightly bigger preview of the photo or video. You can swipe through the entire collage this way. If you release the finger it will open the photo or video.
    • If you tap on the headers for Years, Collections or Moments, it will open a map that displays groups of photos over the places where you took them; tap the group to view those photos in thumbnail view.


  • When you launch the Photos app in iOS 7, you will be greeted by the Moments view.
  • When you tap on a photo or video in Years, Collections or Moments view, it opens the photo giving you options to either Edit, Share or Delete it. In case of the video you get an option to either Share, Play the video or Delete it.
  • In Editing mode, in addition to the option to Rotate, Auto-Enhance, Red-Eye removal, and crop, you also get an option to apply filters. The filters available are the same as the real time filters available in the Camera app such as Mono, Tonal, Noir, Fade, Chrome, Process, Transfer and Instant. The interface switches from white to black when you edit a photo.
  • Tapping on filters option displays the thumbnails of the photo with the filter effects at the bottom. You can scroll through the thumbnails and tap on one you like and then on the Apply option in the top right corner to apply the desired filter effect.


  • The Share panel have been completely redesigned again in iOS 7. When you tap on the Share button at the bottom left corner, it opens the Share panel, which is broken into four distinct sections:
    • The top most section displays thumbnails of the photos, with your photo selected. This is quite nifty as it gives you an option to add more photos if you want, and saves you the hassle of going back and selecting the photos again.
    • In the next section, you get the option to share the photo or video via Message, Mail, iCloud, Facebook, Twitter and Flickr. Tapping on Mail or Message takes you to the compose window with the photo attached. Tapping on Facebook and Twitter or Flickr takes you to the appropriate share sheet where you can add addition information before sharing them. Tapping on the iCloud option takes you to a Share sheet, which allows you to add a note before sharing it. Here you have the option to share it to an existing Photo Stream or create a new one.
    • In the row at the bottom, you have the option to Copy the photo to the clipboard, Play a Slideshow of the photos, AirPlay the photo to your Apple TV, Assign it to a Contact, Use it as a Wallpaper, or Print it.


  • Unfortunately, you have to use the same workaround if you want to share more than 5 photos as Mail option isn’t available when you select more than 5 photos.
  • The redesigned Share panel in iOS 7 is a lot more extendable, and should make it very easy for Apple to add new sharing options in the future.
  • You can share a photo or share all the photos from your favorite moments.
  • You can now share photos as well as videos via the Shared Photo Stream feature.


  • People you share with, can also post photos, videos and comment to your stream. The new Activity view that can be accessed via the Shared tab, lets you see the latest updates from all your shared photo streams in one place.
  • Unfortunately, there is still no option to add a comment or tag a photo, which would have also made it easier to search for a photo later.

Here’s a video walkthrough of the new Photo app in iOS 7:

Overall, I really like the changes Apple has made to the Photos app. It makes the Camera roll a lot more manageable, and should make finding older photos and videos a lot more easier. It will take sometime to get used to the new Photos app, but I prefer the automatic organization of photos and videos works quite well compared to the tedious task of creating albums manually.

As always, let us know what you think of the new Photos app in the comments.

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Categories: iOS 7

  • Tom

    What happened to the Maps view of your photos?

    • Gautam

      If you tap on the headers (just above the thumbnails) in Yearly, Collections or Moments view, it will take you to the Maps view.

      • mightbeOtto

        No, it doesn’t really take you to the Maps view, or at least nothing like we knew it in iOS 6. What it takes you to is a map with that particular photo session shown in its geographical context, but the map doesn’t show you any of the the other photos in your library, which were taken on other occasions. So, if you’re looking for some photo which you know was taken in a particular place, but you can’t remember when, then you’re quite out of luck, unless you feel like panning through your thousands of other photos hunting for it.

  • Pacomacman

    I must admit I preferred the old suck animation on deletion and when a photo was taken with the camera. I also preferred seeing albums as a single icon and having the pinch gesture to peak into the album. As it stands in iOS7 it all looks too clinical and sparse.

  • C

    When someone text messages or emails me a Photo or video how do I save it to either my Photos app or my Camera Roll? When I click save it does not seem to give me an option…in fact it does not seem to do anything at all.

    • Marky

      Did u get an answer? I want to know, too!

  • JeanB

    the photos and videos on my iPad are mostly coming from iPhoto Events, some only from iPhoto Albums. I find it disturbing that they can no longer be accessed on my iPad by Events but only by Photos, i.e. a mix of dates and places (the latter often erroneous as not all cameras provide GPS data, the more so for videos). Apple should, therefore, reintroduce the access to photos by Events, a basic featuure of iPhotos!

  • di

    How do I save my photo stream so I can delete, then restart my icloud account with current email. have i pad

  • Ed Arnold

    Do not like Photos. I can easily arrange photos from a shoot or scan on my Mac/Lion. When I transfer photos to an album on ios7 Photos, the order gets messed up. Photos has no option to reorder, e.g. by filename … So to do a slideshow on ios, I have to manually rearrange the photos by dragging them. Neither Mac OS nor ios provide any help about how to change file creation dates (or whatever) so order isnt scrambled when using photos on ios. Also help on ios is non-existent … Try searching for “Photos delete” on ios7. Kinda stupid that Apple sticks us with a new application, but you have to search the web to find basic info about how it works.

    I’ll stick to doing slideshows on my macbook.

  • John Henson

    I hate the new photo app. In the old app you had “an endless stream of photos” in your Camera Roll because Apple wouldn’t let you create new folders and MOVE the photos to them. So now the answer is to automatically move the folders to a bunch of arbitrarily created folders where you can’t find them. Loosen up just a little bit, Apple.

  • Golgappa

    Where is the delete option as mentioned above in the article for a selected photo. I have ios7.0.3. Sometime I see the trash can icon on the side bar but it is grey out.

  • A Nonny Mouse

    I really dislike the new photo update. Really.
    And now my photos no longer automatically join the photo stream nor does my phone automatically back up to the cloud anymore.
    Not happy with iOs7 at all. It was no improvement.

  • Mags

    • 9 days ago

    Where is the delete option as mentioned above in the article for a selected photo. I have ios7.0.3. Sometime I see the trash can icon on the side bar but it is grey out.
    I have this same situation. Is there a solution?

  • J

    why the hell would I need to waste bandwidth to upload to the cloud just so I could transfer the video and photos to the PC. Why not just let me access the iphone directly…. what a waste of time.

  • TechnoNut

    The big problem with the new Photos app is the elimination of the Events folders on the iPad version. Events are folders, much like Albums, that are created when you upload images to the iPad using the Carpmera Connectin Kit. The folders are still created, you just can’t see them in a nice listing anymore using the Photos app. Fortunately third party image viewers and managers caan still see them. I find that I seldom use the Photos app anymore unless i want to delete an image.

    I don’t care if Apple decides to add new features, but whay take stuff away? Did they sit around a table at iOS App developemnt Central at Apple HQ and say, “Hey, does anyone use or need the Events view in the Photos app? No? Ok we’ll scrap it. Next item on the list?”

  • haha

    Not bad

  • Mandi Broderson

    I noticed that when I created a Shared folder and added a bunch of photos that the pictures are no longer in order by the date they were taken. I’m very Type-A so this is driving me nuts. At first I thought maybe they were in an order based on how I selected them, but that doesn’t appear to be the case either… It just seems completely random. Any suggestions?

  • reba

    I am really disappointed Places is gone… I traveled a lot and loved being able to go to be map and view all pictures i took in one place. This was one of my favorite iPhone features, and now it’s gone…

  • Mel

    Does anyone know why some photos will have a date and location stamp, and some others will not? For example, if I saved a pic from a text message, it will sometimes tell me where and when it was taken. I want to know how some pictures will not tell me where and when it took place.

  • Naing

    I can’t sort by the names of the files anymore. How can I do that in iPad’s Photo?

  • had2makeupaname

    I MUCH prefer the Places button in the earlier ios. It gave a map of the world with increasing numbers of photos as you zoomed in. It was far superior IMO to the new system