How to transfer photos from Android to a Mac

macOS can import photos directly from any iOS or iPadOS device. It’s not as flexible with Android devices though. The good thing is that, while macOS is mostly a closed operating system, Android is not. Accessing photos, or any other files saved to an Android device’s storage is easy.

Transfer photos from Android to Mac

With a Windows PC, all you need to do to transfer photos from Android is connect the device. The device’s internal storage can be accessed from File Explorer. Any additional drivers that are needed are installed automatically by Windows. On a Mac, you have to install an app for the job.

How to transfer photos from Android to Mac

To transfer photos from Android to Mac, follow these steps.

On your Mac, visit the Android File Transfer app page
Click the Download button and save the DMG file to your local drive.
Open the DMG file and drag and drop the File Transfer app to the Applications folder.

Connect the Android device to your Mac.
On your Android phone, swipe down to open the notifications drawer.
Tap the USB connection notification, and then tap it again twice.
From the options, select File Transfer.
On your Mac, open the Launchpad and open the Android File Transfer app.
The app will detect the Android device and list the folders and files in it.
Select a file, and drag & drop it to the folder you want to save it to.
The file will be copied.

You can use this method to copy photos, or any other type of file that is saved to the Android device’s storage. You can only copy items from the Android device. You cannot cut or move them out of the device when you copy them to the Mac. This is a macOS limitation that Android and the File Transfer app cannot work around.


macOS doesn’t need to install drivers for an Android phone. The File Transfer app will take care of the connection. If your Mac only has USB C ports, but your Android phone does not, you can use a converter to connect the device. There are lots of USB 2.0 to USB C converters available. You can use it with the data cable that came with your device. If you often connect an Android device to your Mac, it may be worth getting a cable that can connect directly to the USB port. If your Mac only has two USB C ports though, you probably already have a converter and a dongle that will do the job.