How to create and manage shared Photo Streams on iPhone and iPad

How to create and manage shared Photo Streams on iPhone and iPad

Photo Stream gives you the ability to share pictures that you've taken on your iPhone or iPad with any friends and family that are also using iPhones and iPads. On the occasion that you want to share more than just a few photos, it's also a lot more convenient than sending them via e-mail or text message. Photo Stream also allows others to comment and like your photos which means you can all share and communicate instantly.

If you aren't sure how to start using Photo Stream, follow along and we'll get you started.

How to enable Photo Stream

Before creating, sharing, and editing Photo Streams, you'll need to make sure you have Photo Stream enabled in iCloud. If you don't already know how to do this or aren't familiar with Photo Stream at all, make sure you check out our Photo Stream guide first.

How to create and share a Photo Stream

  1. Launch the Photos app from the Home screen of your iPhone or iPad.
  2. Tap on the Photo Stream tab along the bottom menu.
  3. Tap the "+" sign in the upper left hand corner.
  4. Here you can add contacts you'd like to be able to view your shared Photo Stream as well as give it a name. If you'd like the Photo Stream to be public to anyone, turn On the Public Website option. Leave it off if you only want the people you invite to be able to see the photos.
  5. Once you're done adding contacts and editing the general information for your shared Photo Stream, tap the Create button in the upper right hand corner.
  6. You'll notice that you now have a new Photo Stream under the Photo Stream tab. Tap into it.
  7. Tap Edit at the top right and then Add along the bottom menu.
  8. Tap the photos you'd like to add to the shared Photo Stream in order to add them. You can add from any album or your default camera roll. Once you're finished selecting photos, just tap the Done button in the upper right hand corner.
  9. You'll now see those photos in your shared Photo Stream. They'll now be viewable by anyone you've shared the Photo Stream with.

How to delete a Photo Stream

  1. Launch the Photos app from the Home screen of your iPhone or iPad.
  2. Tap on the Photo Stream tab along the bottom menu.
  3. Find the Photo Stream you want to delete and tap the blue arrow next to its name.
  4. Tap on the Delete Photo Stream button at the bottom and confirm the delete.
  5. The Photo Stream will be deleted and no one will be able to view its contents any longer.

How to add or remove subscribers from a shared Photo Stream

  1. Launch the Photos app from the Home screen of your iPhone or iPad.
  2. Tap on the Photo Stream tab along the bottom menu.
  3. Find the Photo Stream you want to delete or add a user in and tap the blue arrow next to its name.
  4. To add a user just tap the Add People button and enter their names. When you're done just tap Add.
  5. To delete an existing user, just tap on their name under Subscribers section and then tap the Remove Subscriber button.
  6. That's all there is to it. The subscribers that were added or removed will be updated automatically and instantly.

How to add or delete photos in an existing Photo Stream

In the current release of Photo Stream, you are only able to add or edit Photo Streams that you yourself have created. You won't be able to add or edit photos in a Photo Stream someone else has shared with you.

  1. Launch the Photos app from the Home screen of your iPhone or iPad.
  2. Tap on the Photo Stream tab along the bottom menu.
  3. Tap into the Photo Stream you'd like to add or delete photos from.
  4. Tap the Edit button in the upper right hand corner.
  5. From here you can tap on photos you'd like to delete and then tap the Delete button along the bottom.
  6. If you're trying to add photos, just tap Add immediately after tapping the Edit button and you'll be taken to your photos in order to add more.
  7. That's all there is to it. After you're done making changes all the viewers you've shared the Photo Stream with will see the changes as well.

How to like or comment on a Photo Stream image

  1. Launch the Photos app from the Home screen of your iPhone or iPad.
  2. Tap on the Photo Stream tab along the bottom menu.
  3. Find the image in the Photo Stream you'd like to comment on and tap on it.
  4. Tap on the chat bubble icon on the far right of the bottom menu.
  5. From here you can add your comment or like the picture by tapping on the smiley icon above the comment field.

Allyson Kazmucha

Editor for iMore, Potter pundit, and the ninja in your iOS

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There are 17 comments. Add yours.

Ceelo187 says:

I really wish other people invited to the shared stream could add pictures to the stream if you gave them permission... Ex: family wants to share pictures with each other from the family reunion that were taken from different devices.

Allyson Kazmucha says:

Me too. It's one of my biggest gripes about Photo Stream :(

trmoney24 says:

agreed. this totally makes the feature much more usable. we went out for halloween and I shared my pics with photo stream. no one else know about this feature and automatically thought they could add their halloween pics from their phones to the album as well. nope

OKBatman says:

Agreed. Seems like a logical feature to include. Silly Apple.

dvdmovieking says:

You should probably mention that Shared Photo Streams needs to be turned on in iCloud settings first. Took me a while to figure that out.

Allyson Kazmucha says:

Good point! Thanks! I'll add that in.

Dionte says:

Is there a way that you can allow everyone to add photos to a photo stream that you create?

Dionte says:

Never mind I see that was the first comment, a little too excited. The edit feature is not working.

bikedogrun says:

Excellent tutorial! Thank you, Allyson ... And the best (by far) IOS site on the 'web !!!

Allyson Kazmucha says:

Thanks! We always appreciate comments like this :)

Jaguarr40 says:

Allyson I tried to contact you in regards to this via this site contact form. I hope you receive it and answer me about this article. I am just not seeing many of the things you are mentioning on my 4S. Need your help but great article as you always write.

jdg0 says:

Can someone verify these few points. I have read these proems on the apple forum from posters

1. All pictures that you upload to the photostream will be saved to the subscribers ios device taking up there storage.

2. For people who don't mind that (I do because I'm running out of storage on my phone) the pictures are not full quality. It still takes a good amount of space though. I'd say a 5mb pic is 3 over photo stream to the subscriber.

3. There is no way for you to disable photo stream downloads on cellular data. It's easy to suck someone's else's data plan and cause an overage for them just by them subscribing to your stream.

My own question is will the subscribers storage go back down if I start deleting pics from my stream?

gvndeb60 says:

Does anyone know if a shared Photo Stream counts towards the 1000 photo limit of my Photo Stream?
Great article by the way!

jdg0 says:

They do not, also so far no one has seen a limit like your own personal photo-stream.

"Photos in shared photo streams are not deleted after thirty (30) days, but the size of any given photo stream may be subject to photo or recipient number, and/or size limitations. Downloaded photos can be manually saved to the iOS Camera Roll."

http://www.apple.com/legal/icloud/en/terms.html

wormeyman says:

Are the photostream photos full resolution or smaller?

jdg0 says:

smaller. look at my post above

Cindy Gunnerson says:

does anyone know if you can add an email instead tk share the photos using photo stream? I have an android device and my sizter in law just had a baby and is using this to share photos. doex anyone know if there is a wayto connect to it with out and I product with another app or can they send it to my email? I would like to get the pics too and now we arent. they also are not shari g anything ovef fb orthis wouldnt be a problem.