Josh Brown Icon
Josh Brown Oct 26, 2023

Transferring Files from iPhone to PC Without iTunes [2023 Guide]

AltTunes Howto logo

4.8 Stars rating for all Softorino products from Shopper Approved (2,013 Reviews)

Free Download
Josh Brown Icon
Josh Brown Oct 26, 2023

We all come across this problem once in a while.

You want more free storage on your iPhone, want to revisit one of your great memories going big on a desktop or you just want an extra layer of safety when it comes to backing up important iPhone data, meaning you want to get the files over to your PC.

Well, whatever it is you want to do, we can assure you want to do it without iTunes. Why? Well, while iTunes is good when it comes to fast and simplified backups, it gives users no flexibility whatsoever regarding the type of backup and data. Furthermore, we all know the horror stories of iTunes suddenly crashing during the making of a backup, leaving the user with massive data loss and a faulty backup.

On top of that, iTunes also sometimes overwrites old backups if you don’t explicitly tell it to not do so, meaning, for instance, old photos that you might delete on your iPhone will also be gone on your backup if you let iTunes overwrite it with a new one.

Now, we value your time, we don’t want you to go through all of that hustle. That being said, we won’t leave a  single stone unturned, multiple methods are achieving an as easy as possible file transfer from your iPhone to PC. Let’s jump right into it presenting you the first one!

Method One: Let’s get the party started with altTunes

No, you’re not going to a party, this method is about third-party software though. The Swiss development firm DigiDNA made easy file copying between Apple devices and PCs to their profession. Their created tool called “altTunes” is one of our top picks in the industry with basically zero crashes and a tremendous amount of flexibility for the file-transferring users. Sounds like magic right? Well, let’s put some magic into action! Follow the step-by-step guide down below to copy files from your iPhone to your PC/Mac!

Step 1: Let’s get altTunes on your machine!

Get the app on your Windows for free by clicking on the download button below.

Free Download

After the download is completed, just install altTunes like you for sure have done many times before!

Step 2: Connect your iPhone

Have you successfully installed altTunes? Great! Now it’s time to launch it and make the first step with it. We assume you want to copy files from your iPhone over to your PC, so go ahead, grab a cable, and connect your iPhone to your desktop machine.

To clear things up from the beginning, altTunes doesn’t differ whether you connect an iPhone, iPad, or even an iPod. Basically, every Apple device gets treated the same way. Do you have an iPad? Go ahead and connect that!

Furthermore, altTunes offers a unique feature to transfer files totally wireless using Wi-Fi technology. For that, you have to connect each device once with a cable to establish a secure connection. After you’ve connected once, you can transfer wirelessly.

So, connect your device and altTunes should automatically detect your iPhone. If it’s a first-time connection your iPhone may ask you to trust the computer or to enter your security pin, which we kindly ask you to do in order to go ahead with the next steps.

If you’re having trouble, don’t give up yet, we may have a solution to help you out if you’re having connection problems with your iPhone. Click on the link down below for some troubleshooting.

Click here to solve connection issues!

Step 3: From now on, it’s really up to you

You’ve made it, altTunes just reviled its flexibility to you. From now on, you have a choice. Click yourself through the left side of the altTunes software to find out which type of data can be either imported, exported, backed up, or organized.

By doing so, you can back up your iPhone manually by clicking yourself through all of the different sections on the left sidebar, selecting and exporting files individually. This can be very helpful if you just want to export certain files, pictures, or videos so you don’t have to go through the whole backup procedure every time.

On the other hand, though, the option of making a full backup is a lifesaver to prepare yourself for a worst-case scenario of data loss. altTunes’s doing a great job providing one of the most flexible and fastest backup methods on iPhone which you’ll be guided through in the following.

Step 4: Launch the backup wizard

Making a backup using altTunes is equivalent to executing a full data transfer from your iPhone to your PC. Now the difference between altTunes backup and Apple in-house one is the possibility to bows through your backup with altTunes. So, enough talked let’s start your backup!

Click on your device in the left top corner of altTunes. Next, simply click on “Backup” on the right side to start the altTunes backup wizard.

Step 5: Launch the backup

After launching the backup wizard, you have tons of options to customize the backup as you like. Whether you want full encryption, change the backup location, or automatically timed backups of a backup over Wi-Fi. altTunes gives you the possibility to customize your data transfer to the fullest.

Alright, that was fun, now click on "Back Up" to initialize the backup. Make sure both your Windows PC are plugged in, preventing them from running out of juice. The same goes for your iPhone, furthermore, make sure they are connected using a strong Wi-Fi bond or a wired connection to finish the backup as fast as possible.

Wait a little moment and you’re done! That was easy, wasn't it?

Now, let's have a look for some other methods to make your data transfer as easy as possible

Method two: AirDrop’s doing its job!

Downloading third-party software seems pretty resistive for a lot of iPhone users, they want to work with things just out of the box. Well, for that type of users there’s a ridiculous, easy-to-use method, which lacks compared to altTunes on features and flexibility but will get the job done without downloading additional software while being strikingly fast and completely wireless, let’s have a look at AirDrop.

Transferring files from iPhone to PC using AirDrop

But before you jump right into it, let’s make sure you can even use AirDrop. Unfortunately, this technology is Apple-exclusive, meaning you have to use a Mac to get things done. If you’re a Windows user and still don’t want to download additional software, go ahead and have a look at our third method.

Step 1: Enable AirDrop on your iPhone & Mac

First, let’s make sure you’re running a Mac that actually supports AirDrop. For that, simply go into the “Go” section on the top taskbar of your Mac. On the dropdown menu click on “AirDrop” to open up its configuration window. If there’s no such application called “AirDrop” you’re probably using an iMac which was created before the AirDrop technology was developed, meaning you won't be able to use it with your Mac.

Image 2020 11 04 12:23:07

If you open up AirDrop for the first time on your Mac, the software will ask you to configure your visibility to other Apple devices at the bottom of the software. We suggest choosing “Visible to Everyone”

On iPhone, airdrop should be activated automatically, but your visibility can be changed by going into “Settings” -> “AirDrop” or by doing a long press on the AirDrop icon in the quick setup.

Step 2: Just AirDrop stuff

Photo 2020 11 04 12.07.10

As you will see, it doesn’t get any easier than the following. Do you want a picture transferred over to your Mac or vice-versa? Great. Just open up the image or select multiple files and click on the share icon. Select Airdrop from the popup menu, select your Mac or iPhone and, well, you’re done.

Give it a little while and make sure both devices are juiced up, but besides that, if you want a quick solution there’s no need to transfer tons of files.

This is your way to go!

Now, for all of the Windows users. Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered as well! Let’s find out how Mac and Windows users can simply copy over files to their Machine without using any software, but their operating system. Let’s jump right into it!

Method three: File Explorer for the win!

This method is by far the easiest, but also most unintuitive one to copy files over from your iPhone to PC. So, you’re fired up? Great, let’s jump right into it!

Step 1: Connect your iPhone

Unlike other methods mentioned above, this one can only be executed using a wired connection meaning there is no way around connecting your iPhone physically to your PC.

Now, go ahead and do so, if you've not connected your iPhone any time before, it may ask you to trust this PC. Sometimes users have to enter their passcode as well in order to unlock the iPhone as a mass-storage device to the desktop machine. Go ahead and do the things you’re iPhone asks you to do. Alright, we’re basically ready to transfer files, yay!

Step 2: Select files and drag'n'drop them!

If you’re iPhone gets recognized by your machine you’ve done everything right and we’re ready to pursue. Go into the device section of your PC and double-click on your iPhone.

The internal storage opens itself up to you, now you can basically scroll through all of the data which is obviously not organized at all, another downside of using the file explorer.

Localize the files you want to copy, for example, photos taken by the iPhone camera are located in the “DCIM” folder. Select all of the files you want to copy and simply drag and drop them over into your desired location. Voila! You’re done!

With a little bit of knowledge and experience, you’re able to localize all the different data types faster and faster, meaning there's a little learning curve on this method, but it’s definitely worth taking if you want to get things done as fast as possible.


What? You’ve successfully transferred files over to your PC using one of the above-mentioned methods. Happy to hear that! As mentioned, the three different methods are exclusively selected to present to you the easiest and fastest ones in the industry. If our picks were right, you don’t have to read this article ever again.

That’s been said, best luck with future file transfers and hopefully, you’re gonna have an amazing rest of the day!


AltTunes Howto logo


A Better, Simpler Way to Manage Your iPhone

Free Download Download Image

For Win Icon Windows.

AltTunes Howto logo AltTunes

Get AltTunes to browse iOS backups, extract SMS messages, and export music, videos, & photos to a folder on your computer.


For: Windows Windows

AltTunes Illustration

iPad®, iPod®, iPhone®, iTunes® and Mac® are trademarks of Apple Inc., registered in the U.S. and other countries. Our software is not developed by or affiliated with Apple Inc. WALTR®, Softorino® are registered trademarks of Softorino Limited.

Copyright © 2023 Softorino Inc.