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How do I use Camera Upload?

With Camera Upload, the photos and videos you take with your camera, phone, or tablet will upload automatically to Dropbox—meaning they'll be safely backed up and viewable anywhere.

Take advantage of Camera Upload in two ways:

  • Upload wirelessly from your phone or tablet using the iOS, Android, Windows Phone or Windows tablet app.
  • Upload by connecting your camera, phone, or tablet to your computer and using the Mac or Windows desktop app.

Use Camera Upload from the Android app

Make sure you have the latest version of the Android app. The first time you start up the app, you'll be prompted to select your Camera Upload settings. Decide whether to allow Dropbox to upload using Wi-Fi and/or your cellular data plan (if applicable). Each photo and video will be automatically uploaded once to your Camera Uploads folder.

As soon as you tap Enable, Dropbox will automatically upload eligible photos and videos to your Camera Uploads folder within your Dropbox. Now that Camera Uploads is enabled, any time you launch Dropbox from your phone or tablet, the app will automatically upload any photos or videos you've taken since the last time the app was open or connected to your computer.

Dropbox for Business users:

The Camera Upload feature is only available for personal Dropboxes to help you keep your personal photos separated from work files. To add photos and videos to your work Dropbox, you can instead individually select which files to upload to your work Dropbox from your mobile device. Additionally, you can connect a personal and a work Dropbox on a single device, making your Camera Uploads folder accessible anywhere, any time.

Use Camera Upload from the iPhone app

Make sure you have the latest version of the iOS app. The first time you start up the app with a personal account, you'll be asked whether you'd like to enable Camera Upload. Each photo and video will be automatically uploaded once to your Camera Uploads folder. By default, Camera Upload will only upload over Wi-Fi. You can go into the app's settings to disable or allow Dropbox to upload using your cellular data plan (if applicable).

As soon as you tap Enable, Dropbox will automatically upload all photos and videos to your Camera Uploads folder within your Dropbox. Now that Camera Uploads is enabled, any time you launch Dropbox from your phone or tablet, the app will automatically upload any photos or videos you've taken since the last time the app was open or connected to your computer.

You can easily view all of your photos in the app by selecting the Photos tab (the photo icon) at the bottom of the screen.

Background uploading

Background uploading is a new option that helps large Camera Uploads finish without needing you to open the Dropbox app. To turn it on, go to the Camera Upload section in the app's settings and toggle on Background Uploading.

Normally Camera Upload can only run while the Dropbox app is open and for a few minutes after you close it, due to a limitation in iOS. However, if you turn on background uploading, the app will automatically resume uploads whenever it detects a significant change in your iPhone's location (such as when you commute from home to work). This serves as a trigger for Dropbox to start uploading again. This feature is designed to make your Camera Uploads work more efficiently and does not collect your location information.

When the background uploading option is set to On, you'll see the location services arrow appear at the top of the screen:


This icon usually means that an app (such as a mapping app) is using your iPhone's GPS system to keep track of your precise location—and eating up a lot of battery in the process. However, Dropbox's background uploading feature uses a low-power version of Apple's location services. If you have a big backlog of photos to upload, you may notice that the app uses some power. But once that's done, uploading new photos should have little effect on battery life.

Dropbox for Business users:

The Camera Upload feature is only available for personal Dropboxes to help you keep your personal photos separated from work files. To add photos and videos to your work Dropbox, you can instead individually select which files to upload to your work Dropbox from your mobile device. Additionally, you can connect a personal and a work Dropbox on a single device, making your Camera Uploads folder accessible anywhere, any time.

Use Camera Upload from the iPad app

Make sure you have the latest version of the iOS app. The first time you start up the app with a personal account, you'll be asked whether you'd like to enable Camera Upload. Each photo and video will be automatically uploaded once to your Camera Uploads folder. By default, Camera Upload will only upload over Wi-Fi. You can go into the app's settings to disable or allow Dropbox to upload using your cellular data plan (if applicable).

As soon as you tap Enable, Dropbox will automatically upload all photos and videos to your Camera Uploads folder within your Dropbox. Now that Camera Uploads is enabled, any time you launch Dropbox from your phone or tablet, the app will automatically upload any photos or videos you've taken since the last time the app was open or connected to your computer.

You can easily view all of your photos in the app by selecting the Photos tab (the photo icon) at the bottom of the left-hand panel or menu.

Background uploading

Background uploading is a new option that helps large Camera Uploads finish without needing you to open the Dropbox app. To turn it on, go to the Camera Upload section in the app's settings and toggle on Background Uploading.

Normally Camera Upload can only run while the Dropbox app is open and for a few minutes after you close it, due to an iOS restriction. However, if you turn on background uploading, the app will automatically resume uploads whenever it detects a significant change in your iPad's location (such as when you commute from home to work). This serves as a trigger for Dropbox to start uploading again. This feature is designed to make your Camera Uploads work more efficiently and does not collect your location information.

When the background uploading option is set to On, you'll see the location services arrow appear at the top of the screen:


This icon usually means that an app (such as a mapping app) is using your device's GPS system (if applicable) to keep track of your precise location—and eating up a lot of battery in the process. However, Dropbox's background uploading feature uses a low-power version of Apple's location services. If you have a big backlog of photos to upload, you may notice that the app uses some power. But once that's done, uploading new photos should have little effect on battery life.

Dropbox for Business users:

The Camera Upload feature is only available for personal Dropboxes to help you keep your personal photos separated from work files. To add photos and videos to your work Dropbox, you can instead individually select which files to upload to your work Dropbox from your mobile device. Additionally, you can connect a personal and a work Dropbox on a single device, making your Camera Uploads folder accessible anywhere, any time.

Use Camera Upload from the Windows Phone app

Make sure you have the latest version of the Windows Phone app. You can enable Camera Upload from your app settings. Once enabled, by default, Camera Upload will upload photos automatically (even when the Dropbox app is closed) when the following conditions are met:

  1. Your phone is plugged in with a battery which is nearly full or full; and
  2. You are connected to Wi-Fi; and
  3. Your phone is locked.

Alternatively, you can also enable this feature from the Photos tab. If you already have photos in your Dropbox account but don't have Camera Upload enabled, you'll see an Enable button in a banner at the top of the screen to turn it on. If you don't have any photos, you'll see a full screen to Turn on Camera Upload.

In addition, you can toggle the Upload When Open option within the Camera Upload settings. This will ensure that photos are uploaded even if your phone is not locked and not plugged in, as long as it isn't in Power Saving mode. Furthermore, you can toggle the Use Cellular Data option to upload your photos while the app is open but you're connected to the cellular network and not Wi-Fi. You can access these settings by tapping the Ellipsis (⋯) on the app bar in your root Dropbox on the Files, Photos, or Favorites tab, and then tapping Camera Upload.

  • Note: Automatic video upload is not currently supported for Windows Phone, due to operating system limitations.

Dropbox for Business users:

The Camera Upload feature is only available for personal Dropboxes to help you keep your personal photos separated from work files. To add photos to your work Dropbox, you can instead individually select which files to upload to your work Dropbox from your mobile device. Additionally, you can connect a personal and a work Dropbox on a single device, making your Camera Uploads folder accessible anywhere, any time.

Use Camera Upload from the Windows tablet app

Make sure you have the latest version of the Windows tablet app. You can enable Camera Upload from your app settings. Once enabled, by default, Camera Upload will upload photos periodically automatically when:

  1. The Dropbox app is opened and the phone is not locked; or
  2. The Dropbox app is closed and / or your tablet is locked, as long as your device is plugged in.

Photos will be uploaded in the above cases as long as you are connected to the internet via Wi-Fi, an Ethernet connection or using a cellular data connection with an unlimited data plan. If you are using a cellular data connection but have a restricted data plan, you can toggle the Use Any Connection Type option to utilize your data allowance. However, please note that this may result in significant data plan charges. You can access these settings by swiping in from the right edge of your screen to bring up the Charms bar and then tapping on Settings and then Camera Upload.

Alternatively, you can enable this feature from the Photos tab. If you already have photos in your Dropbox account but don't have Camera Upload enabled, you'll see an Enable button in a banner at the top of the screen to turn it on. If you don't have any photos, you'll see a full screen to Turn on Camera Upload.

  • Note: Automatic video upload is not currently supported for Windows tablet, due to operating system limitations. You can, however, manually upload videos to your Dropbox.

Dropbox for Business users:

The Camera Upload feature is only available for personal Dropboxes to help you keep your personal photos separated from work files. To add photos and videos to your work Dropbox, you can instead individually select which files to upload to your work Dropbox from your mobile device. Additionally, you can connect a personal and a work Dropbox on a single device, making your Camera Uploads folder accessible anywhere, any time.

Use Camera Upload from your Windows computer

Make sure that Autoplay is enabled on your computer and that you have the latest version (1.3.4 or higher) of the Dropbox app.

  1. Plug in your camera, phone, or tablet to your computer. You'll be prompted to upload photos and videos to your Dropbox folder.
  2. Select Import Pictures and Videos using Dropbox. Your photos will automatically save to your Dropbox folder's Camera Uploads folder.

If you connect an Android phone or tablet to your computer, you'll need to select Connect as a Disk Drive from the status bar. If you connect an iPhone, iPad, or iPod Touch, the device must be unlocked before Camera Upload can continue.

The Camera Upload feature tries to be smart about importing photos and videos. It will pick up wherever it left off, uploading only photos and videos that it has not uploaded to the Camera Uploads folder before.

Dropbox for Business users:

The Camera Upload feature is only available for personal Dropboxes to help you keep your personal photos separated from work files. However you can connect a personal and a work Dropbox on a single device, making your Camera Uploads folder accessible anywhere, any time.

Use Camera Upload from your Mac

For Camera Upload to work, you'll need Mac OS X 10.5 or higher. Also make sure you have the latest version of the Dropbox app.

  1. Plug in your camera, phone, or tablet to your computer. You'll be prompted to upload photos to your Dropbox folder.
  2. Select Import Pictures and Videos using Dropbox. Your photos will automatically save to your Dropbox folder's Camera Uploads folder.

If you connect an Android phone or tablet to your computer, you'll need to select Connect as a Disk Drive from the status bar. If you connect an iPhone, iPad, or iPod Touch, you'll need to unlock the screen before Camera Upload will continue.

The Camera Upload feature tries to be smart about importing photos and videos. It will pick up wherever it left off, uploading only photos and videos that it has not uploaded to the Camera Uploads folder before.

Dropbox for Business users:

The Camera Upload feature is only available for personal Dropboxes to help you keep your personal photos separated from work files. However you can connect a personal and a work Dropbox on a single device, making your Camera Uploads folder accessible anywhere, any time.

Use Camera Upload from your Windows computer

Make sure you have the latest version (1.3.4 or higher) of the Dropbox desktop app and that Autoplay is enabled on your computer.

  1. Plug in your camera, phone, or tablet to your computer. You'll be prompted to upload photos to your Dropbox folder.
  2. Select Import Pictures and Videos using Dropbox. Your photos will automatically save to your Dropbox folder's Camera Uploads folder.

If you connect an Android phone or tablet to your computer, you'll need to select Connect as a Disk Drive from the status bar. If you connect an iPhone, iPad, or iPod Touch, the device must be unlocked before Camera Upload can continue.

The Camera Upload feature tries to be smart about importing photos and videos. It will pick up wherever it left off, uploading only photos and videos that it has not uploaded to the Camera Uploads folder before.

Dropbox for Business users:

The Camera Upload feature is only available for personal Dropboxes to help you keep your personal photos separated from work files. However you can connect a personal and a work Dropbox on a single device, making your Camera Uploads folder accessible anywhere, any time.

Camera Upload and Linux

Unfortunately the Camera Upload feature is only available on Windows and Mac computers at this time. Check the Dropbox Forums for updates and more information.