I'm using Amazon Photos for cloud storage of a bunch of Live Photos I take with my iPhone. I can view them as Live Photos (and play the video) when viewing them on photos.amazon.com, and I can also view them this way when I import them directly into the Mac OS Photos app. Here's an example photo on Amazon. However, when I download it (using the download button on Amazon Photos) and import it into Mac OS Photos, all I get is a still image. How can I get the Live Photo or even separate video and photo files (which is what I get when I export from Google Photos)?

1 Answer 1


I had this problem too and found a solution, by accident.

On a Windows 10 PC, get the Amazon Photos App from the Microsoft store. Choose the "Download" option from the left menu:

Amazon Photos App

Select "Download Folders". You will see your Amazon Drive contents. Select the "Pictures" folder and navigate down to your photo folder. You will see that the number of files shown in the file count is larger than the number of photos shown on the Amazon Photos web page.

Select the "Download To..." button at the bottom of the page and then proceed to download.

Don't panic if you see that the numbers of files being downloaded is the smaller number shown on the Amazon Photos website; once the download is complete you will see the QT files along with the HEIC or JPG photo files.

The down side is that you must download the entire folder. I have not been able to find a way using the app to download a single photo and get both files.

Another down side is that this does not work if you turn on the File Sync functionality, to since the Amazon files onto your hard drive. The QT files don't seem to sync.

I hope this ability to download the QT files isn't unintended functionality that Amazon will look to "fix", given how hard they seem to try to hide the QT files from all other download options.

Good luck!

  • Thanks for posting this helpful information. I am having the same problem as in the OP. I am able to download the Live Photos as you describe so that they get split into .heic and .heic.qt files. I am curious to know if there is a way to download the .heic file so that it is a Live Photo, as the original photo was. I see that this is what happens when I download an individual photo on the iPhone app. But, I need to download a large number of photos. I don’t know that there is a way to do this with the iPhone app.
    – plafratt
    Commented Dec 21, 2022 at 5:38
  • I'm fairly new to the Apple ecosystem. After playing around with this some, I think I may have figured out what to do. (Although, maybe this is obvious to people who are more familiar with Apple software than I am.) I figured out that if I drag both the .heic file and the .heic.qt file into the Photos app, then the Photos app combines them into a Live Photo that appears to represent the original photo that I'd uploaded.
    – plafratt
    Commented Dec 21, 2022 at 6:14

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