How To Roll Your Own Instant Photo Upload On Android And iOS

Plugging in your phone to sync a mass of photos is a pain, and manually uploading each of them to Dropbox is far from idea. Here's how to automatically upload each photo you take to Dropbox, immediately after you take it.

Google+ has a neat feature called "Instant Upload" on Android, where it will automatically add photos you take on your phone to your Google+ albums. It's a great idea, but Google+ is hardly the first place I want to store all my photos. I'd rather have them go to my Dropbox, where I can edit them, choose which ones to upload and more. Luckily, this is pretty simple on both Android and iOS. Here's how to do it.

Automatically Upload Photos with DropSnap for Android

On Android, the best program to upload your photos is previously mentioned DropSnap. Essentially, with DropSnap, you point it to a folder on your SD card, and it will upload all photos that appear in that folder to your Dropbox account. If you want to, you can make multiple rules that watch multiple folders, as well as choose whether to sync over Wi-Fi only, how often to check for new photos, and more.

When you make a rule, you tell your phone which folder to watch and where in your Dropbox to upload it. Different camera apps will save photos to different folders, though, so you'll either change their camera's save locations (usually found in the preferences of that camera app) or create a new rule for each app. That way, you can make sure it watches your CameraZoom FX folder, your Vintage Camera folder, and your video camera folder all at once and uploads them to Dropbox.

Sync Photos to Dropbox with CameraSync for iOS

iPhone users don't have quite as much control, nor can they set photos to upload automatically. However, with previously mentioned CameraSync, sending your photos to Dropbox is ridiculously easy. Just open it up, plug in your Dropbox account and start snapping pictures. When you open up CameraSync, it'll upload your camera roll to Dropbox, and every time you open it up after the first, it'll check only for new photos and upload them as well. You can choose what size photo it uploads, set it to upload on Wi-Fi only, and much more.

That's it! It's very simple and should only take you a few minutes to set up. Then, you can use something like previously mentioned Dropbox Automator to do whatever else you want with those pictures — email them, upload them to Facebook or anything else you can think of. Got any of your own tips for automating the process? Share them in the comments below.


    I have a 50gb account I'd much rather use... anyone know of a way to do this exact thing with

    CameraSync for iOS works with No idea about an Android equivalent.

    The SugarSync Android app has auto-upload built in

    I thought I read here once that there was a shortcut for this where you could select to upload a photo in Dropbox and then select the camera App as the source of the photo to upload... Dropbox would then open the Camera App and any photo taken would be uploaded...

      That's possibly true, but this method means you don't have to open the camera app through DropBox, and means you can use whatever camera app you want.

    How does DropSnap compare to DropSync?

    RE: The Android app.

    This is pretty cool. I'd love a more generic version where the rules not only had source and destination folders but a file mask. This would allow you to look for certain file types arriving in a certain folder and then upload those to dropbox.

    One of the things I have defined is my torrent client at home watching a dropbox folder for torrent files. If I could sync the .torrent files in my Android download folder with dropbox I'd be able to surf tracker sites on my mobile device, download the torrent, get it auto-synced to dropbox and kick off the download at home. Now that'd be sweet.

    Check out Folder Sync (, or the free version Folder Sync Lite (

    Works with multiple providers (incl Dropbox and, as well as your own FTP/SFTP/SMB servers), multiple specified folders, watches directories and/or scheduled uploads, two way sync, etc etc.

    Pretty much the ducks nuts, the ants pants and the bees knees of phone to cloud backup IMO.

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