How do I export Live Photos while keeping them Live Photos?

cuttheredwire

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Last year I tried to take a photo a day. I failed to keep it up, yet failed to keep it to one. Often I would take a dozen or so. Now I have a lot of similar photos on iCloud. I want to put some in storage on a NAS, freeing up iCloud space. I might never need these photos again, but I'm not ready to let go of them just yet. (I am just getting the hang of using Lightroom for selective color and finding that photos I was ready to part with were more interesting to work with than I expected.)

The thing is that I lose the video part of a live photo on export to an actual file. It's like they can't exist outside of Photos.

I considered backing them up on another iCloud account in Photos. I currently have about 10 GB of photos, so 5 GB would go a long way, but I would rather use backup local.

The only other thing I thought of is somehow using extra Photos libraries. I'm not sure if those can be put on a NAS and only macOS would be able to access those pictures. I would like to have a way to access them via iOS as well (e.g. via Readdle's Documents).

Any thoughts?
 

Rene Ritchie

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Live Photos are a combo of a JPG and MOV, with JPG being the main image file and MOV being the trigger animation. They're bundled together so it might be possible to archive the bundle and then, if you ever wanted the actual live photo again, push the bundle back into Photos to view/share/whatever.

We'll look into this and see if we can find a solution!
 

Ledsteplin

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There are apps you can use to manage live photos. Convert the live photo to a gif with Lively. Store it in Box or Dropbox. Save it back later to the camera roll and use IntoLive to convert it back to a live photo.
 

cuttheredwire

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Live Photos are a combo of a JPG and MOV, with JPG being the main image file and MOV being the trigger animation. They're bundled together so it might be possible to archive the bundle and then, if you ever wanted the actual live photo again, push the bundle back into Photos to view/share/whatever.

They had a great WWDC video on what comprises Live Photos:

https://developer.apple.com/videos/play/wwdc2016/501/

I'm not a developer yet, but I try to educate myself in hopes of changing that someday. In deed, they have outlined how Live Photos work, so I'm hoping there's a tool to preserve them. I'm hoping one of your connections will have a way.

We'll look into this and see if we can find a solution!

Thanks! I'm really not sure what to do about this. There isn't a "just works" solution. That would be a big help to me and others, as I am sure you are well aware:

How to save iCloud photos and videos so you can delete them from your iPhone | iMore

There are apps you can use to manage live photos. Convert the live photo to a gif with Lively. Store it in Box or Dropbox. Save it back later to the camera roll and use IntoLive to convert it back to a live photo.

For some people, that may work. GIFs only store 256 colors; way too lossy for me. They also loss sound. I have some very artistic Live Photos, and this just would reduce the impact of the moment captured.

Right about now, I wish there was a Live Photos file type. :/
 

Ledsteplin

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They had a great WWDC video on what comprises Live Photos:

https://developer.apple.com/videos/play/wwdc2016/501/

I'm not a developer yet, but I try to educate myself in hopes of changing that someday. In deed, they have outlined how Live Photos work, so I'm hoping there's a tool to preserve them. I'm hoping one of your connections will have a way.



Thanks! I'm really not sure what to do about this. There isn't a "just works" solution. That would be a big help to me and others, as I am sure you are well aware:

How to save iCloud photos and videos so you can delete them from your iPhone | iMore



For some people, that may work. GIFs only store 256 colors; way too lossy for me. They also loss sound. I have some very artistic Live Photos, and this just would reduce the impact of the moment captured.

Right about now, I wish there was a Live Photos file type. :/

Do they have to be in live photo format? Why not convert them to video. Then you can store them in iCloud or Dropbox and they retain the sound. The app Lively can accomplish that.
 

cuttheredwire

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Do they have to be in live photo format? Why not convert them to video. Then you can store them in iCloud or Dropbox and they retain the sound. The app Lively can accomplish that.

I want a true backup. (Keep in mind that I'm a IT security major.)

I want to keep the moment intact. Be it the komorebi on a flower, the laughter of my baby God son, or movement of the doors as my friend's bride enters the chapel. Converting to video separates it from the photo and damages the effect.

Another side effect is how this breaks importing back to Photos. Native filters and edits work with Live Photos seamlessly. They can be enhanced and added to the Moments feature. Things that "just work" would "just stop working" in the conversion. And that problem would be worse over time.
 

Ledsteplin

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I want a true backup. (Keep in mind that I'm a IT security major.)

I want to keep the moment intact. Be it the komorebi on a flower, the laughter of my baby God son, or movement of the doors as my friend's bride enters the chapel. Converting to video separates it from the photo and damages the effect.

Another side effect is how this breaks importing back to Photos. Native filters and edits work with Live Photos seamlessly. They can be enhanced and added to the Moments feature. Things that "just work" would "just stop working" in the conversion. And that problem would be worse over time.

SMH. I just converted a live photo to video. Nothing was lost. I then converted it back to live photo using the app IntoLive. It's exactly like the original live photo I started with. Nothing lost at all. What's to "just stop working"?
 

cuttheredwire

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SMH. I just converted a live photo to video. Nothing was lost. I then converted it back to live photo using the app IntoLive. It's exactly like the original live photo I started with. Nothing lost at all. What's to "just stop working"?

It's lost until reimported. Still, might work.

1) Can you do this in batches of thousands?

2) Is the full quality and metadata of the original Live Photo JPG preserved?

This still would be a makeshift solution, relying on apps that would also need to be backed up along with a version of the OS they work with. It's not a proper long-term backup solution.
 

Ledsteplin

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It's lost until reimported. Still, might work.

1) Can you do this in batches of thousands?

2) Is the full quality and metadata of the original Live Photo JPG preserved?

This still would be a makeshift solution, relying on apps that would also need to be backed up along with a version of the OS they work with. It's not a proper long-term backup solution.

You have batches of thousands of live photos?
 

cuttheredwire

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Wow! Most people don't make many live photos because they take too much space. Your options are limited.

I went for the extra space on my iPhone and pay for storage in iCloud. I leave Live Photos on. It can catch some surprising things. Others, ya, I may remove the Live aspect.

I'm in the process of cleaning out Photos. Got rid of most images that weren't mine. Cleared out screenshots. Exported video to external storage. Now I want to prune my Live Photos; some I don't need to always have with me.

For example, I do a lot of nature photography in my backyard. I'll take 3-5 shots of the same thing at similar angles. I need to pick the beat one and archive the rest. That one I keep may be portrait, but a landscape version might be better for Moments. Not something I need all the time, but good to have.
 

Ledsteplin

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I went for the extra space on my iPhone and pay for storage in iCloud. I leave Live Photos on. It can catch some surprising things. Others, ya, I may remove the Live aspect.

I'm in the process of cleaning out Photos. Got rid of most images that weren't mine. Cleared out screenshots. Exported video to external storage. Now I want to prune my Live Photos; some I don't need to always have with me.

For example, I do a lot of nature photography in my backyard. I'll take 3-5 shots of the same thing at similar angles. I need to pick the beat one and archive the rest. That one I keep may be portrait, but a landscape version might be better for Moments. Not something I need all the time, but good to have.

Cool. I hope you figure out a balance that works for you. When Apple introduced live photos, the first thing I noticed was you can't store them off the phone without losing the live aspect. I don't take many live photos. Mostly a few special ones of my grandkids. I'm ok with converting them back and forth with the apps. Some I leave in video. The kids like to play with the live ones. LOL
 

cuttheredwire

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Cool. I hope you figure out a balance that works for you. When Apple introduced live photos, the first thing I noticed was you can't store them off the phone without losing the live aspect. I don't take many live photos. Mostly a few special ones of my grandkids. I'm ok with converting them back and forth with the apps. Some I leave in video. The kids like to play with the live ones. LOL

Oh, I bet they do. You can have some really unexpected things happen in them. :) Their little eyes just light up.

I remember showing my mom that the first photo of her grandson, in the hospital, was a Live Photo. She was so shocked that she grabbed my arm. She had no idea how it did that, but it really came to life.
 

Data Soong

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I've been looking for a solution as well. Today I found it. Bought the Sandisk iXpand Mini Drive and backup into it. From there I can transfer the backup to my iMac or iPad. Live Photos intact and working. I tried restoring it back to iPhone where all my Live Photos are and they work! Next I'm gonna see if I can backup into a portable hdd. I don't see why not though. In the iXpand, it is separated into two files - jpeg and mov.
 

Mainer82

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I've been looking for a solution as well. Today I found it. Bought the Sandisk iXpand Mini Drive and backup into it. From there I can transfer the backup to my iMac or iPad. Live Photos intact and working. I tried restoring it back to iPhone where all my Live Photos are and they work! Next I'm gonna see if I can backup into a portable hdd. I don't see why not though. In the iXpand, it is separated into two files - jpeg and mov.

How did it work? I'm looking at buying one. I want to make sure that I have a copy of it.
 

Luigi A

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The problem with converting to Gif is that you lose the sound. You see, the live portion is a 3 second hd video file with a .mov extension that apple made extremely difficult to find by putting it inside a .pvt file folder that’s not at all easy to access. When you convert the .mov to a gif, you’re converting a video to a simple animation so the sound associated with it will be removed.
 

sajalb

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I've been looking for a solution as well. Today I found it. Bought the Sandisk iXpand Mini Drive and backup into it. From there I can transfer the backup to my iMac or iPad. Live Photos intact and working. I tried restoring it back to iPhone where all my Live Photos are and they work! Next I'm gonna see if I can backup into a portable hdd. I don't see why not though. In the iXpand, it is separated into two files - jpeg and mov.

Wow, I do own a sandisk Wifi Drive. Sadly this feature does not work on it. Only still photo is transferred even for Live Photos.

Also I would like to mention, I am another user who had to take a 256GB iphone to store all my live photos properly on it. Even restoring photos backup from iCloud loses the liveness of the photos.

Users who thinks we are mad to keep live photos always on, do please note that only due to this feature of Apple, I have moving photos of my Late Dad and thousands more of several people which are much more precious than the long videos which I rarely tend to rewatch.
 

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