How to Sync Your iPhone to a PC

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If you have an iPhone, chances are you might want to use it with your computer to back up files or import photos. Using an iPhone with a Mac is undoubtedly easier than using it with a PC, because the two work so seamlessly together. You can pick up a task on a Mac that you started on your phone, and soon you’ll be able to AirPlay content from your iPhone to your Mac when macOS Monterey drops this fall.

But if you’re using a PC, you can still plug your iPhone in and accomplish basic tasks. You’ll have to use iTunes for Windows 10—I know, I know, it’s rough, but it’s usable.

To back up your iPhone, make sure you have iTunes 12.5.1 or later running on your PC. Plug your iPhone into your PC using a USB to Lightning cable. Unlock your iPhone with your passcode when prompted. Tap Trust This Computer on your iPhone.

Open the iTunes app for Windows. Click the iPhone button in the top left of the app. Click Summary, then click Back Up Now. If you want to encrypt your backups for security reasons, click Encrypt local backup, enter a password, and click Set Password. To view those backups, click Edit > Preferences > Devices.

To import photos from your iPhone to your computer, click the Start menu on your PC. Click on Photos. Click Import > From a USB device.

If your photos are stored in iCloud and not actually on your phone, you won’t be able to transfer photos to your PC. Instead, use the iCloud desktop app for Windows to download those photos. Once you enable iCloud Photos, new photos will automatically download to your Windows PC—check C:Usersyour nameMy PicturesiCloud PhotosDownloads if you can’t find them.

If you want to sync your iPhone with your PC over wifi, open iTunes again. Click the iPhone button in the top left, click Summary, then under Options, click Sync with this device over wifi. Click Apply. 

Aside from using iTunes, it’s fairly easy. Godspeed!

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