How to easily turn a Photo Stream into a public website

By , Mar 16, 2013

photo stream website 2

I’ve been using an iPhone since the first one launched in 2007, so almost 6 years. And in that time, I feel like I’ve learned most of the ins and outs of iOS. Like many of you, I’m the one friends and family come to with their tech questions.

But I’ll be the first to admit I don’t know everything about Apple’s mobile OS, as I learn new stuff everyday. And yesterday, I found out that you can turn your Photo Streams into websites, viewable by anyone, in just a few easy steps…

Ok, so I remember Apple saying something about this feature when they introduced Shared Photo Streams last summer. But since I don’t use Photo Stream at all, I never did any further digging on it. Now that I have, though, it’s kind of cool.

Here are the steps (hat tip to OSXDaily):

  • First, you’ll want to make sure Photo Stream and Shared Photo Streams are enabled on your device by opening the Settings app and tapping on the Photos and Camera tab.
  • Now open up your Photos app, select the Photo Stream tab in the bottom right-hand corner, and then tap the blue arrow icon to the right of the Photo Stream you’d like to turn into a website.
  • After doing that, you should see a screen like the one above. And this is where you’ll enable the ‘Public Website’ feature. It may take a while, but iOS will publish your Photo Stream to an website.
  • That’s all there is to it! If you want to share the site’s URL, shut down the website, or delete the Photo Stream all together, simply open the Photos app again, select the Photo Stream tab, and tap on the blue arrow icon.

Of course, this method is really for folks who already have active Shared Photo Streams. As aforementioned, I didn’t. So I followed the first two steps, but instead of tapping the arrow icon, I tapped the ‘Add’ button in the top left-hand corner.

photo stream website 1

This allowed me to create a new Shared Photo Stream, where I manually added photos I took at the beach this past weekend from my camera roll. And I was then able to send the link to the website out to friends and family. No fuss, no muss.

Yes, there are literally dozens of sites and services out there for sharing photos. But for quickly sharing a specific set of photos—say from a vacation—I’m not sure many of them are better suited than this. It literally took me less than a minute.

To those of you who already knew how to do this, more power to you. But for those of you who didn’t, this is a pretty cool trick huh? For more cool iPhone photography tips and tricks, be sure to check out our awesome iPhoneography section.

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  • RarestName

    Shut up

  • wonderboydave

    what blue icon are u talking about???

    • Chris Smith

      it doesnt work with the main photo stream you have to create your own click on the + to create one then turn public website on and add photos

    • Melvco

      If you didn’t already have an active Shared Photo Stream, you won’t see the blue icon. From the 4th paragraph:

      “Of course, this method is really for folks who already have active Shared Photo Streams. As aforementioned, I didn’t. So I followed the first two steps, but instead of tapping the arrow icon, I tapped the ‘Add’ button in the top left-hand corner.”

  • Greenhaze22

    Way cool! Thanks.

  • Pedro Diogo

    This is awesome. I had no idea I could do this. :) Now, photo sharing from apple’s stock apps make sense to me!

  • Luis

    Now im thinking keynote presentations on the go.

  • Yen-Ting Chen

    Followed the steps and created a public url for my photo stream BUT the app crashed to springboard when tapping the share link button! Anyone got this problem?

  • Joe

    I’ve totally ignored Photo Stream, but the more I read about it, the more I’m intrigued by it.

    When publishing them to “public website,” can anyone stumble upon the site? I’d guess “yes” but is it easy to find? Or is this like YouTube where you can make it a private link that is only accessible if given a link?

    • burlow

      It’s a really long URL, so someone could possibly guess it, but not likely. it’s like youtube’s “unlisted” – with youtube “private” you have to log in to view the video (only approved accounts can watch it), unlisted lets anyone with the link watch it.

    • SEAUte

      Turning on the “public website” switch as mentioned isn’t really public in sense that anyone joe of the street can view your photos. As mentioned, the URL is quite long so it would be hard to guess.

      The main reason for turning is so you can share with people who do not have icloud accounts. At least that is my understanding. If its turned off then only those who have icloud accounts can view them.

      • Joe

        Thanks for the tip guys. Those explanations make a lot of sense (something that seldom occurs on the internet).

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  • Towhid

    Very Good iOS new feature Share