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Apple iOS 11/iOS 12: How To Recover Deleted Photos On iPhone and iPad

The instances when you accidentally delete a photo and you immediately realize that you shouldn’t have done that are quite rare. More often than not, you play on your Apple iOS 11/iOS 12 device, possibly looking to free up some space, and you delete whatever comes your way and doesn’t seem relevant at the time. Days or weeks later, when you think about an event and you want to see the picture you took on that occasion, you start searching for it. And searching, and searching, and then it hits you.

You’ve actually deleted that photo from your iOS 11/iOS 12 device. When, how, why? How did this happen? Could you possibly get it back? Yes, we know the tirade of questions, we get it quite often from our Apple fans readers.


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Can you really recover deleted photos on iPhone and iPad in iOS 11/iOS 12?

Good news for those in this situation! If it happened within the past 30 days, the photo is still on your phone or tablet. That’s right, even though you have deleted it, you haven’t actually… deleted it. Confused? Well, try to remember how it was when iOS 11/iOS 12 came along and the Camera Roll was ditched for the controversial Recently Added / Recently Deleted folder. This is the moment when you finally get to see the utility of the Recently Deleted folder.


What does the Recently Deleted folder have to do with photo recovery?

The name is more than obvious, but maybe you’ve just ignored this feature. Your camera app puts all the photos you take in the Recently Added folder and moves all the photos you delete in the Recently Deleted folder. In case you have only deleted the photo from the Recently Added folder, and, like we said, it happened in the past month, the picture is still in the Recently Deleted folder.


The only instances when you won’t be able to recover a deleted photo on iPhone or iPad in iOS 11/iOS 12 are when:

  1. You have manually deleted the picture the second time, from the Recently Deleted folder;
  2. It’s been more than 30 days since it happened, which means that the folder’s content was automatically erased.


What can you do about it, exactly?

If you aren’t in any of the two unfortunate situations suggested above, the steps for recovering your deleted pictures on the iPad or iPhone in iOS 11/iOS 12 are quite simple:

  1. Launch the Photo app;
  2. Select the Albums option;
  3. From the new window, select the Recently Deleted folder;
  4. Start browsing through the files listed in there – you’ll notice how each picture has a number that represents the days;
  5. Select the photo that you want to recover;
  6. Tap on the Recover option from the lower-right corner;
  7. Confirm the recovery action when prompted to do so;
  8. Return to the Albums folder;
  9. This time, select the Recently Added folder;
  10. Browse until you find the photo that you have just recovered from the Recently Deleted folder.


All these being said, you only have to check if your photo is still there. Recovering the deleted photos on iPhone and iPad in iOS 11/iOS 12 is accessible, just like we said. What’s not accessible is the option of deciding if you want your deleted photos to go to that folder for 30 days or to be permanently deleted from the first time. But that’s just one of the weird things about your Apple device.

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