New in iOS 9: a more detailed upload indicator in stock Photos app

iOS 9 Photos iPad screenshot 001

Apple’s streamlined Photos app for iPhone, iPod touch and iPad has not gained major new features in iOS 9, unlike Photos for Mac whose upcoming OS X El Capitan release contains several new features that didn’t make it into the inaugural version of Photos for OS X last fall.

But there’s one tiny refinement in iOS 9’s Photos app that I think will delight people like myself who rely on iCloud to keep their photos and videos synchronized across their devices: a more detailed upload progress indicator.

As you can see for yourself below, the indicator at the bottom of your Camera roll now provides a bit more detailed information when the Photos app is uploading your photos to iCloud (if iCloud Photo Library or My Photo Stream is enabled in Settings).

iOs 9 Photos app progress indicator iPhone screenshot 001

The new indicator provides a dynamically refreshed overview of the upload process in megabytes. By comparison, the Photos app in iOS 8 and iOS 7 has the indicator which just reads “Uploading x photos”, making it difficult to ascertain the size of photos being uploaded.

Somewhat surprisingly, the line-based progress indicator has been removed from Settings > iCloud > Photos when Photos is syncing your media, and replaced with a label that simply reads “Uploading x photos”.

iOs 9 Photos app progress indicator iPhone screenshot 002

And this is what it looks like in iOS 8.
iOS 8 Beta 2 (iCloud Photos settings 001)

I understand some people might deem these changes unimportant and criticize me for obsessing over details. On the other hand, if Apple has taught us something it’s that no detail is too small.

But as someone who syncs photos across devices with iCloud Photo Library, seeing the actual size of uploads helps me determine whether I should allow or postpone the syncing process when bandwidth and Internet speed is a factor.

This is just one in a pretty long list of nice-to-haves that should be appreciated in iOS 9 but haven’t even deserved a brief mention in the official iOS 9 release notes.

Here are a few other refinements you might be interested in:

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