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How to permanently delete pictures from an iPad

First published on Ka of Isis 150421

Note: Tested with iOS 8.3 on an iPad 3.

For some strange reason, pictures are not actually deleted from iPads or iPhones when you delete them from within the Photos app. Instead, they are transferred to the program’s Albums collection and exist in limbo for a period of 30 days after which they are silently trashed by the operating system. If you delete a significant number of pictures, the storage capacity of your device takes a toll. Not good. And unnecessary. If you know the trick, however, those images are sitting duck just waiting for a transfer to the happy hunting grounds.

In the Photos app you can see all your active images in either Photos > Moments mode or Albums > Camera Roll mode. For the pupose of this demonstration, start in the first mode. To permanently delete one or several images, do the following:

1. Choose Select from the menu (upper right).

2. Tap the picture(s) you want to get rid of. A check mark will be added to the picture(s).

3. Choose the trash icon from the menu (upper left).

4. Accept the Delete xx Photo(s) prompt.

5. Go into Albums > Camera Roll mode via the Albums icon in the screen bottom.

6. (You may have to) Choose Albums from the menu (upper left).

7. Tap the collection of Recently Deleted pictures. If the collection contains more than one image, it will “spread out” to reveal each individual image.

8. Choose Select from the menu (upper right).

9. Choose Delete All from the menu (upper left).

10. Accept the Delete xx Photo(s) prompt. Note that this action can not be undone.