App for That: How to view photos on your computer as a slideshow on your iPad

There are hundreds of thousands of iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad apps for just about everything -- so how come the one you need, the one you know just has to be there, is so hard to find? Enter TiPb's new weekly feature where staff and readers alike sort through the App Store and help you find just the right App for That. This week, Bradley asks:

I have a bunch of photos stored on my Mac and I'd like to be able to use my iPad as a wifi photo frame (when I'm not using it of course). I have air video set up which I really love and I suppose this is a photo version of that. The camera sync could be part of the solution but I don't want to use up storage on my iPad when I just want to display the photo and then move on to the next one.

To see our solution for Bradley, follow along after the break!

DropPics for Dropbox [$1.99 - iTunes link] gives easy access to your photos stored on Dropbox and allows you to view them as a slideshow. This happens over the air, so none of your iPad's precious hard drive space will be used.

A Dropbox account is required to use DropPics and a free account gives you 2GB of storage. This will hold quite a bit of photos, especially if you resize your photos before copying them over. (The iPad displays photos at 1024x768). This will also help with loading time.

Once you sign up, just copy the desired photos into the Dropbox folder on your computer, browse to the folder in DropPics on your iPad, and start the slideshow!

DropPics also allows you to upload photos into your Dropbox account. Although you may not be taking many photos with your iPad, DropPics is a universal application for iPhone and iPad, so you can add the photos you take with your iPhone and view them on your iPad. Unfortunately, DropPics only allows you to upload one photo at a time.

All in all, this a great solution. Anyone else have any App for That suggestions for Bradley? Let him -- and all of us -- know in the comments.

Having trouble finding what you need in the app store? Send us an email to and let us know what you're looking for, and we'll do our best to find you just the right App for That!

Have something to say about this story? Leave a comment! Need help with something else? Ask in our forums!

Leanna Lofte

Former app and photography editor at iMore, Leanna has since moved on to other endeavors. Mother, wife, mathamagician, even though she no longer writes for iMore you can still follow her on Twitter @llofte.

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Reader comments

App for That: How to view photos on your computer as a slideshow on your iPad


I remember when digital photo frames were really expensive, I bought someone one as a Christmas gift a couple years ago for almost 200 bucks, now they are like 50. I'd never set my ipad up as a photo frame. I like the ones where people can email you pics and they show up instantly.

How much power does an app like this draw? It seems like a really cool idea, but the problem I have with the above mentioned photo frames (Dionte's comment) is that there's an unattractive wire coming from the device.

The app sounds great - but I have to say - that baby girl in the pic is absolutely, positively the most adorable baby on earth. Her little face kills me. Look at her sneaking a peek. Toooooo cute!

This doesn't actually seem to be the right app for what Bradley is asking for. All of his photos are on his computer, and you're forcing to upload them to a website? Heck, you could've recommended any Flickr/SmugMug/Phanfare app then.
He needs something like FileBrowser (, but I don't know if that lets you view photos in slideshow.
He really needs something that can parse the (I assume) iPhoto folder structure and databases and display them properly.
But DropPics ain't it.

FileBrowser supports slideshows, although there aren't many settings to tweak. I have used it successfully with my HP MediaSmart storing the photos.

I use one app for most of my streaming needs at home. I have a NAS set up to backup all my music and photos.
It supports UPnP so I use MLplayer to use both my iPhone as a music player in a iPod dock and also for viewing photos both on the phone and iPad.
Works like a charm :-)

What about MultiVista? I've not tried it myself, but apparently it lets you use an iPad as a remote display.

Orb works great for slideshows. It's also great for streaming music. Video and Live TV can also work, but are a bit more buggy.

If you do have your photos already on Flickr though, I use FlickStackr every day to display images from a Flickr group I help moderate, but you can use it in slideshow mode to display pretty much any Flickr stream/group.
It works really well, alllows you to set how long each image is displayed for and upload photos to Flickr easily too. Very nice app - here's TiPb's reveiw (many more features added since then):

The only app I've seen, that is 'Air Video for iOS' is ImageBank. He same local wifi network streaming, via a client on your PC/Mac, Reads the selected folders on your computer, has thumbnail view and slideshow functionality.

I was asking the same question and found the perfect app. It's Cinq Photo and does exactly what Bradley was asking for. I use to browse all of my photos on my Mac using my iPad.

Surely this has to be a future feature of the built in photos app? It's the same as using shared libraries in iTunes so it seems crazy that you can't easily do this.
I've been using an app called Zumo Cast to access photos from my Mac. It's similar (but more powerful) than AirVideo. Currently though I believe it has been withdrawn from the app store by Motorola after they bought it.

I'm impressed, I must say. Seldom do I come across a blog that's equally educative and interesting, and let me tell you, you've hit the nail on the head. The issue is something that not enough folks are speaking intelligently about. I'm very happy that I found this in my search for something concerning this.
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