[Tutorial] – How to Retrieve Deleted Photos on Android in Next 5 min

Written by Pravin Patil

There was a time in past where a whole family used to a have a single camera (traditional one with a reel inside, not a DSLR), and wherever they go for an outing, they used to take that to capture beautiful moments. But as time passed, technology too took a leap ahead and now most of the people have smartphones to capture the photos.

How to Retrieve Deleted Photos from Android Phone/Tablet

Photos keep reminding us of the time we spent, the memories we lived and also to display it to others and share with them. But, what if you lost the photos? If a hard copy is lost, you can get a print using the soft copy, but what if you lose the original photo from the mobile device itself by accidentally deleting it. Well, don’t worry guys, there’s always a solution to a problem, you just need to figure it out, how!


How to Retrieve Deleted Photos (Android)

Android being the largest used device in the smartphone world, there is quiet support from it for doing such stuff which most of us can easily manage. We have tested a few of the tools and have listed them here.


1. Google Photos: 

Now almost all the Android devices by default get this app, just in case if you don’t find this on your phone, just download Google Photos from the Google Play Store.


Retrieve deleted photos using Google Photos

During the very first login to your Android device, it surely asked you for a Google account which also provides access to other Google apps on your Android device. So use the same Google credential to log in if you are not logged in already.

Google Photos backs up all the images in the device to the google account provided (if Auto-sync is enabled). You can also have a choice to backup specific folders, so you have a liberty to decide whether to back up some folder or not.

It is similar to the “Gallery” option in Android and displays all the images on your device. So, by chance if you delete any image there is always a backup image in the Google Photos (cloud backup), you just need to have an internet connection to retrieve the same. Please follow the given steps to retrieve deleted photos using Google Photos

Step 1:
Open the App drawer on your device and select Google Photos app.

Step 2:
After that, you can see all the images that are or previously were stored on the device which has been backed up.


Google Photo >> Select a photo >> Settings >> Download

Step 3:
Select the photo which was deleted and in the menu select download/restore option, and the picture will be restored. You can find the restored photo in Gallery >> Restored folder.

– There won’t be an auto back-up enabled in this app by default, it asks the user for the permission before the backup of a particular folder.

– Just in case you have canceled the backup and later want to back up that folder, you can just do this, open the app drawer >> open Google Photos app >> Menu >> Device Folders and then select the desired folder to back up and check “Backup and Sync”.


2. DiskDigger Photo Recovery App

DiskDigger Photo Recovery app can be downloaded from the Google Play Store. It will scan your device including the external memory (if present) for deleted photos.



DiskDigger for Android

DiskDigger can retrieve deleted files from most types of media that your computer can read: hard drives, USB flash drives, memory drives, CDs, DVDs, and floppy disks.

– DiskDigger has two forms of operation which you can select every time you scan a hard-disk. These types are called “dig deep” and “dig deeper.”


Dig Deep:

– Undelete files from FAT (FAT12, FAT16, FAT32), NTFS, and exFAT partitions.
– Recover any type of file and filter recoverable files by name and size and also sorts them by name, size, date and directory.


Dig Deeper:

– Scan (carve) entire drive for trails of specific file types.
– Supported file types include:

> Photos and images: JPG, PNG, GIF, CDR, ICO, etc.
> Documents: DOCX, XLSX, PPTX, HTML etc.
> Audio and video: MP3, MP4, FLV, MKV, AVI, etc.
> Compressed archives: ZIP, RAR, 7Z, GZ, etc.
> Miscellaneous: ISO, EXE, DLL, MDB, etc.

Step 1:
Search in the Google Play Store and for DiskDigger Photo Recovery and then download and the app.

Step 2:
Open the app and tap “Refresh List” to see a type of scan needed. After that select the “System” folder.


Diskdiger: Retrieve deleted photos pro settings

Step 3:
After you have chosen the folder tap “Scan Device” and then you can see a list of most recent deleted files. Select the image that was erased and to restore select it and save.


Diskdiger: Scanning for files

Step 4:
Finally, the app will ask for the storage location for saving the photo, after selecting the location, we can find the image stored.

– This app needs root access of the Android device. If not the scenario will be something like this.

– Here as we can see that full scan is not possible without the root access, so only it is supported by Basic Scan which is pretty useless.

– Rooting the device will give the user access to critical components of the Android which is quite risky, as you might delete an important element which will affect the proper functioning of the phone.

– Also rooting will void the warranty of the device. So only developers and people with a good understanding of Android are advised to root their devices.


3. Wondershare’s Dr. Fone for Android:


dr. Fone: Tools to solve Mobile problems

Unlike the previous 2 apps, this isn’t a mobile device application. It is a PC only software. It can be downloaded for free.

Update: dr. fone is now available on Android.

This software can also be used for iOS apart from Android which we will see in the later part of the post when we discuss iOS.

This is one of the best tools available for recovering photos, not only that we can also retrieve data. Moreover, it can
– Extract data from a broken phone
– Backup and restore
– Root the device
– Erase data
– Screen record for Android.

Step 1:
Download and install the software for Windows here. Connect your device to the computer and run the software.


dr. fone: Toolkit for android (Win/iOS

Step 2:
Make sure you turn on the USB Debugging in the Developer Options in the Settings menu, and you will have to identify your device to the software.


Settings >Developer options > USB Debugging > Enable

Step 3:
The program will then scan the device including the external memory (if present), and it will show you the folders which also consists of lost/deleted photos.


dr.fone toolkit is scanning your Android phone to recover deleted data

Step 4:
After you have selected the photos, you want to recover click on “Recover” and set the location where you want to store the photos. You can also refer this video on how to retrieve deleted photos from an Android phone.


4. Fonepaw Android Recovery:


Fonepaw: Simply recover deleted files from Android phones and tablets

Fonepaw Android Recovery software can help you find out the deleted files and restore lost images from your Android device. It supports most of the Android devices, while the latest devices might not be supported as soon as they are launched, but they will be soon supported by the software updates.

Apart from photos, we can also recover contacts, messages, Audio & Video, call logs, Whatsapp chats (both group and individual) and images even without the backup, Documents like PPT, HTML, etc.

The recovery can be done from internal memory of the device, SD card (if available) and also from the SIM card. Cool! Isn’t it?

While there are few steps to be followed for the recovery.

Step 1:
Download and install Fonepaw Android Recovery, this is a paid software, but you can get 30-day trail which will have all the features.

Step 2:
Run the software and connect your Android device to PC using USB cable. Make sure that you have enabled USB debugging on the Android device; we have seen how to do it in the previous tool discussion.


Fonepaw: Connect Android device to PC and Analyze


Step 3:
To recover deleted pictures from your Android device >> select folder where your photos are saved. Then, click “Next”.


Fonepaw: Preview and recover deleted data on Android devices

Step 4:
You can select the folder desired. It will expand the folder and show Deleted ones in red. Then select the images you want to restore. Please refer a self-explaining video on how to recover deleted photos from Android Phone.

Now after reading this post most of the people will have a brief understanding and insight about the tools which we have seen. Generally, people with Android phones don’t struggle a lot as Android is an open source OS and also the data recovery techniques are easy compared to that of iOS.

Your turn: What we missed? Anything in your mind to add it up here?  Let others know if there are other ways to retrieve deleted photos on Android device. Come on the board, comment below and share your own thoughts and experience about this topic.

Quick Rewind

1. Google Photos – Recover auto-updated photos from Google cloud (Free)

2. DiskDigger Photo Recovery Android App (Free/Paid) 

3. Wondershare’s Dr. Fone for Android – A tool for Windows/iOS (Trial/Free)

4. Fonepaw Android Recovery (30 Days Free Trial/Paid)



About the author

Pravin Patil

Pravin is the Author and Founder of An engineer by chance and a blogger by choice. Alongside writing for the web, he keeps interest in music, table tennis, reading and of course, twitter (@Gizpad).

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