Shoebox photo storage

How to have one million baby photos on your iPhone but still have storage space


shoebox photo storage app logo


It is a truth universally acknowledged that the woman whose photos are mainly of her cat, girls’ nights out and date night selfies has not yet had a baby. For as soon as she does, her smartphone will be filled with baby photos. And she’ll start getting annoying, pop-up messages telling her that she is running out of space and – horror- that there isn’t enough space to take any more!

A childless, male colleague recently described the conversation he add in a phone shop when upgrading, which further illustrates the issue:

Male colleague: Will 16GB be enough?

Retailer: Do you have kids?

Male colleague: No…

Retailer: You’ll be fine then.

Clearly, something needs to be done.

The solution: Shoebox photo storage (or a similar app where you can back up your photos in the cloud)

I have no affiliation with Shoebox and there are a few other options out there, but after Googling around and reading up on reviews, this is the app I plumped for and so far I am very pleased with it. For the following reasons:

  • It is quick and free to install
  • Even though I thought the name was a bit weird, I got the keeping photos in a shoebox reference
  • You get unlimited free storage of photos*
  • You can delete the photos from your phone but still have access to them on your phone, whenever you want to look, tearily / in profound relief at those first newborn pictures, taken 400 photos ago
  • It searches for the pictures that have been backed up from your iPhone gallery to identify the ones you can delete and gives you a very satisfying success message stating just how many GBs you just freed up
  • It runs in the background to automatically back up new pics, so there’s no risk of forgetting**
  • You can log in from any computer to see your whole collection, and there is a desktop version of the app which allows you to back-up photos and run in the background too
  • It has a really nice gallery where the pictures are sorted by date for you. It shares photos from the same day in previous years, which has that lovely, nostalgic feel like the Facebook Timehop app. It also sends you little reminders and emails about this (I’ll have to keep an eye on how many emails I receive from the app – that could get annoying but I’m sure there’ll be preferences in the settings)

Shoebox interface

My “home” view in the Shoebox photo storage app. One picture is never enough when you’re trying to get the perfect shot

Feb last year

This time last year *sob*. Okay this is poor quality but only because it was a selfie in low light

Considering that the cheapest option to increase your cloud storage from Apple is £0.50 per month (it all adds up you know) I consider this a massive win. I never like to be coerced into spending money by pop-up error messages in any situation.

*By free, it means saving them at a resolution of 10.6 megapixels. For me this seems fine, I can view them at what appears to me to be the original quality and use them on this blog without there being hideous quality issues. (Some of the original pics on here were not added via this method and have become blurry and pixelated, which would probably make some graphic designers throw-up, but hey, I’m just blasting out quick blogs here, not writing for ID).

Plus you can only save 15 mins of video for free. If you want more video and high resolution images you’ve got to upgrade to their paid version, but this seems pretty reasonable to moi.

** Pro-tip: if you don’t want the auto-backup to rinse your data allowance, it’s best to disable the option to upload pictures over mobile data in the settings. I uploaded nearly 600 pictures before I realised this.

It takes a little while to upload all of your historic photos and it’s slightly annoying if you have a slow connection because it keeps telling you so, but it feels so good to have a safe back-up, accessible from my phone and get some storage back!

So snap-happy, shutterbug mamas and non-mamas out there – use Shoebox photo storage to free your phone space and protect your photos at the same time!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.