Stop Photos app from opening automatically when an iPhone or iPad is connected to the Mac

Published on February 10, 2016

When you connect an iPhone or iPad to your Mac, by default it automatically opens the Photos app in OS X Yosemite and El Capitan. If you find this annoying and want to disable it or allow another app like iTunes or Preview to open when you plug in a device, read on.

Operating Systems: Mac OS X Yosemite, El Capitan

If you want to prevent any app from opening on your Mac when you plug in your devices, this is what you do.

  1. Plug in your device. The Photos app will automatically open. You can also open it from Applications.

  2. Uncheck the box that says Open Photos for this device. Photos will not open again when that particular device is plugged in.

However, if you plug in another device, the Photos app will show up. So, to make this permanent and accross all devices, do this.

  1. Open the Image Capture app from Applications.

  2. Under the text "Connecting this << DEVICE >> opens:

Image Capture

  1. Select No application from the list.

Image Capture

Unplug your device and try connecting anyd evice via USB to see if it opens up automatically. If it sitll does, please let me know.

Alternatively, if you want any other application to open when you plug in your iPhone or iPad, select another application from the list in step (3).

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Published on February 10, 2016