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Can't find photos

Can't find your photos and videos in the Google Photos app? Choose what you're looking for and try the steps below.

Photos you deleted

  1. Go back to the Google Photos app.
  2. At the top left, tap Menu Menu.
  3. Tap Trash Remove.
  4. Touch and hold the photo or video you want to recover.
  5. At the top right, tap Restore Undo.
  6. This will put the photo or video back:
    • Onto your phone
    • Into the "Photos" section of the app
    • Into any albums it was in

Downloaded photos, screenshots, or photos saved by other apps

Photos and videos saved from an app, like WhatsApp or Instagram, are saved in folders.

  1. Go back to the Google Photos app.
  2. At the top left, tap Menu Menu.
  3. Tap Device Folders.
    To back up a folder, tap the cloud icon next to the folder title.
Recently added photos

Using a computer, go to to see your most recently added photos.

Photos by date taken

The timestamp and date on the photo might be incorrect. Try searching for a person, place, or thing in the photo:

  1. Go back to the Google Photos app.
  2. In the box at the top, type what you want to find, for example:
    • Dogs
    • New York City
    • For people you've labeled: their name or nickname.

Learn how to change timestamps on photos.

Photos on the Google Photos search page

If you search for photos and see no results, try these suggestions:

  • Search with a different term.
  • Search again in 3—5 days. It can take awhile for photos to be searchable.
  • Make sure "back up & sync" is on. Only photos that are backed up to your Google Account can be searched.
    1. Using the phone or tablet that you want to back up, open the the Google Photos app.
    2. At the top, next to "Back up & sync is off," turn on the switch. 
A lot of missing photos

Your photos and videos might still be in the process of backing up.

  1. Go back to the Google Photos app.
  2. At the bottom, tap Assistant.
  3. If you see:
    • "Backing up photos": Your photos are being uploaded and should be available soon.
    • "Waiting for connection" or "Waiting for Wi-Fi": Change your settings or connect to a Wi-Fi or mobile network. Tap the card to change your settings.

Brenna is a Google Photos expert and wrote this page. Help her improve it by leaving feedback below.

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