Stop Image Capture from launching when you connect your iPhone to your Mac

By , Jun 15, 2016

Image Capture Icon

Depending on your default application settings on your Mac, certain apps may open when you connect certain external devices to your computer. Among those could be Apple’s Image Capture app, which is a media-importing app that comes with your stock installation of OS X.

In this tutorial, we’ll show you how to disable Image Capture from launching every time you connect your iPhone, iPod touch, or iPad to your Mac.

Image Capture keeps launching? Here’s how to stop it

If Image Capture keeps launching when you connect your iOS device to your Mac, it can be annoying because anyone sitting next to you will see the contents of your Camera Roll as it pops up on your Mac’s nice large display.

The reason it’s doing this is because you may have previously set your Mac to launch Image Capture when an external media device is connected to your computer.

To keep Image Capture from opening when you connect your iOS devices or other external media peripherals, follow these steps:

1) Connect the iOS device you want to disable Image Capture launching on your Mac for.

2) When Image Capture opens, click on your device from the sidebar, then click on the small triangle button at the bottom left of the app’s interface:

Image Capture Eject Options Button

3) This will reveal a hidden menu with a drop down menu selection box with Image Capture selection. Click on it.

Image Capture Connecting This iPhone Opens Drop Down Menu

4) Select No Application from the drop down menu, or select an alternative application to open when your iOS device is connected if you desire to have a different app open instead of Image Capture:

Image Capture No Application When iPhone is Connected

5) This will save your selection and apply it to Image Capture:

Image Capture No Application

6) Verify your settings worked by quitting Image Capture, then unplug your iOS device and plug it back in again.

If Image Capture doesn’t re-open, your changes were successful!

Wrapping up

Personally, I like launching my desired apps when I choose to, rather than letting OS X launch apps for me when I connect things to my Mac. For that reason, I prefer to disable auto-launching of apps like Image Capture, iTunes, and Photos when I connect my iPhone or iPad.

This method should also work with additional peripherals, such as SD cards, USB flash drives, cameras, and other media storage drives that might cause Image Capture to launch, so it’s not limited to iOS devices only.

Also read:

Do you like it when stock apps launch automatically after you connect peripherals to your Mac? Share in the comments!

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  • 9to5Slavery

    Feeling like this site has been the sister site of ifixit.

  • Martynet

    I like image capture because it’s really a quick way how to import few photos when needed. But sometimes, it doesn’t show my recent photos or videos. And that’s annoying, And when I try to import them through phonewiev or ifunbox it says the file doen’t exist. Weird.