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Why would you like to delete photos and videos from your iPhone? There may be some reasons why: you no longer need these photos, you want to free up iPhone space, or any other reasons. So, what could be easier? With the Photos app, you can edit your photos, organize them into albums, and delete those you no longer need. But…

Have you ever tried to free up space on your iPhone by deleting photos and videos, only to find that it’s not as easy as you thought? You just can’t delete photos and videos from your iPhone. There may be an unresponsive delete button, error messages, or photos that just won’t budge no matter how many times you try to get rid of them. In this guide, we will try to explain why you can’t delete photos from iPhone and provide workable solutions to delete photos from iPhone.

I can’t delete photos from iPhone

There are several reasons why you can’t delete photos from iPhone. Here are the three main issues and how to handle them.

1. Why can’t I delete photos from Photo Library?

The chances are that the iPhone won’t delete photos because you have previously synced your photos with iTunes or added photos to the device with a third-party app. Most likely the photos you can’t delete are located in the From My Mac section of the Photos app.

Camera Roll contains pictures taken with your iPhone, whereas the From My Mac section stores photos added from your computer. For more details and useful tips refer to our support article Camera Roll vs Photo Library.

When you tap on a photo, you don’t see a Recycle bin icon:

why cant i delete photos from my iphone

This is a limitation introduced by Apple that doesn’t allow you to delete synced albums directly on your phone. Luckily, we have a solution! CopyTrans Photo is an absolute lifesaver — it can delete synced photos from your iPhone in just a few steps.

2. Why when I delete a photo it comes back?

Why do deleted photos reappear on iPhone? iCloud Photos are to blame. If you have deleted some pictures from Camera Roll while iCloud Photos were disabled on the device and then decided to enable it, an exact copy of the current iCloud Photo Library will be uploaded to your device regardless of the changes you have previously made from the iPhone. Pictures you have deleted will come back.

If you need to delete pictures when iCloud Photos is enabled, follow this guide: How to delete photos from iCloud.

If you are sure that iCloud Photo Library is disabled on your device, you have most likely encountered the third issue.

3. Why can’t I delete photos when my storage is full?

If your iPhone storage is full, you might find yourself in a pickle: iPhone demands to free up some space, but it can’t delete anything because it doesn’t have enough space to perform the deletion. Go ahead and try to delete some of your iPhone pics from the PC with CopyTrans Photo. It offers 100 free trial actions so that you can check whether it can help you solve this problem.

For more tips scroll down.

How to delete photos from iPhone

You can’t delete pictures from iPhone? Then CopyTrans Photo is the best solution for you. It has an intuitive interface, gets things done quickly and you can see thumbnails of all the files you’re operating at any moment. The process of deleting photos from iPhone is so simple, but you can always follow our instructions on how to remove photos from iPhone below:

A new way to manage your iPhone photos

CopyTrans Photo

New CopyTrans Photos for banner
  • Intuitive interface: drag-and-drop transfer
  • Support the formats HEIC and ProRAW
  • Transfer photos and videos between PC and iPhone
  • Backup all your iPhone photos to PC at once with the Full Backup feature
  • Save photos without duplicates
  • Compatible with all iOS devices, including iPhone 14

Download CopyTrans Photo

  1. Download and install CopyTrans Photo:

  2. Connect your device to the PC. Your synced albums will appear on the left side of the interface, under the Photo Library category.Photo Library contains all the synced photos

  3. To delete synced photos from your iPhone, simply select them and press the Delete key on your keyboard. You can also delete entire albums. Delete photos from Photo Library

  4. Once you are done, click on the Apply changes button to delete photos from synced albums. Click Apply changes to delete photos

That’s it! Here is how to delete photos from iPhone!

💡 If you still have other questions such as If I delete photos from iPhone, is it deleted from iCloud? or How to remove photos from iCloud?, learn some useful tips in our comprehensive guide: How to delete photos from iPhone.

I can’t delete photos with CopyTrans Photo

Camera Roll holds photos that users take with their cameras or save from apps, messengers, emails, and websites. Even if you receive an error message when deleting photos, our overview of common problems below will mitigate frustration.

why won't my photos delete error

There are 3 common reasons that may prevent you from deleting photos from Camera Roll.

1. iCloud Photos is enabled on your device

To check, go to Settings > your Apple ID > iCloud > Photos. You will see whether the iCloud Photos toggle is on (iCloud Photos enabled) or off (iCloud Photos disabled). CopyTrans Photo doesn’t support the deletion of photos when your iCloud Library is turned on. Here’s more on how to disable iCloud Photos on your iPhone.

If you don’t want to disable iCloud Photos, you can switch to CopyTrans Cloudly to delete your iCloud photos at once. This app is a multi-purpose tool to mass-delete all the photos from your iCloud Photo Library, upload JPG, PNG, HEIC photos to iCloud, download iCloud photos to your PC and restore permanently deleted iCloud items.

Download CopyTrans Cloudly

delete all icloud photos

For more details on how to delete photos from iCloud please refer to this article: How to delete photos from iCloud.

2. Your iPhone is not recognized correctly

Open Computer or My Computer where all the connected PC drives are listed and make sure that your iPhone is displayed as a portable device, not a camera.how to delete a folder on iphone

If your iPhone appears as a photo camera icon or another drive symbol different from the true iPhone icon seen above, follow this tutorial: My iPhone, iPod touch, iPad is not recognized or detected as a camera.

3. Your iPhone is not properly connected to your PC

If there was an error in CopyTrans Photo, follow the steps below:

  1. Make sure that the iPhone is unlocked, and you are on the Home Screen.
    why won't my phone let me delete photos

  2. Connect your iPhone to CopyTrans Photo and hang on for up to 30 seconds.

  3. Now try deleting some Camera Roll photos, the screen should be unlocked.
    delete photos from camera roll

  4. Click on the Apply changes button to permanently delete multiple photos from Camera Roll. Click Apply changes to delete photos from Camera Roll

4. You are trying to delete pictures from native albums

Due to an Apple limitation, albums created from within the iPhone or iPad are read-only in iTunes and CopyTrans Photo. This means that you cannot add or delete photos/videos from albums like Panoramas, Selfies, Screenshots, Live Photos, etc., or delete the albums themselves. These pictures and albums can be deleted only from within the iPhone.

delete photos from native albums

Here is our guide on how to create an editable album and transfer photos to the Recents album.

I can’t delete photos because my storage is full

Deleting photos also requires free iPhone storage. So, when trying to delete pictures, you might find yourself in a loop of photos reappearing on iPhone. Here are some unconventional tips and tricks on how to free up space on iPhone (click on the links to get detailed instructions).

iPhone storage full can’t delete photos:

I can’t delete recently deleted photos on iPhone

In an attempt to free up some storage on iPhone by deleting photos in the Recently Deleted folder some users come across an iOS bug. No matter how many times you try, those photos won’t delete, and that can be confusing and frustrating at the same time.

We suggest that you restart your iPhone and delete Recently Deleted items from the settings. Here is how to delete Recently Deleted photos:

  1. Go to Settings > General.
  2. Select iPhone Storage. You will find the installed apps listed along with the storage consumed.
  3. Tap on Photos.
  4. Tap on Empty next to the Recently Deleted Album.
  5. Wait 5-10 minutes and check again.
  6. iphone recently deleted photos won t delete

Deleting photos from iPhone


  • Why can’t I delete photos from my iPhone?

    There could be several reasons why you are unable to delete photos from your iPhone. Some common reasons include photos being synced from iCloud, storage space being full, or photos being set to read-only.

  • How can I fix my iPhone if it won’t let me delete photos?

    If your iPhone is not letting you delete photos, try restarting your iPhone, checking if the photos are synced from other devices, ensuring the photos are not set to read-only, or deleting some photos to free up storage space. For more solutions, read this article.

  • What should I do if my iPhone storage is full and it won’t let me delete photos?

    If your iPhone storage is full and you can’t delete photos, you can try syncing your iPhone to a computer to back up and delete photos, deleting some photos to free up space, or adjusting your iCloud settings to manage photo storage.

  • How do I delete photos from my iPhone or iPad?

    To delete photos from your iPhone or iPad, simply open the Photos app, select the photos you want to delete, tap on the delete option, and confirm the deletion. You can also manage your photos through iCloud settings.

  • Why won’t my iPhone let me delete photos directly from the device?

    If your iPhone is not letting you delete photos directly from the device, it could be due to the photos being synced from iCloud, set to read-only, or the storage space being full. For more reasons why and how to fix them please read the article.

  • What are some ways to fix the issue of iPhone not letting me delete photos?

    We suggest you to use CopyTrans Photo and CopyTrans Cloudly to fix the problem. Choose the best way for you.

Why cant I delete photos from my iPhone


iPhone won’t let me delete photos. This problem can be frustrating, but iPhone won’t delete photos issue is common and it has its practical solutions. When you understand the causes behind the issue and apply the fixes mentioned in this article, you can regain control over your media library and free up iPhone storage space. Whether it’s a software bug, insufficient permissions, or iCloud backup, there are ways to overcome these obstacles and keep your iPhone running smoothly. These tips also useful when you want to delete photos from other devices. Take the necessary steps to fix the problem and enjoy a hassle-free experience when managing your photos and videos on your iPhone.

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By Marika CopyTrans

Marika (pronounce like 'Merica) dreams of saving the world from boredom. Fairly believes that she was the one for the part of Wonder Woman in DC movies, but for now she is eager to make your CopyTrans journey remarkable.