Looking for a way to label photos

iOS & iPadOS

I would like to be able to assign labels or titles to my photos on my iPhone? Is there a way to do that from within the photos app, or is there another app available that will allow me to assign labels. I have an iPhone 6. I appreciate any suggestions.




Submitted by LaBoheme on Friday, April 10, 2015

i guess most people would tell you to use vo custom label, and you might as well want to do that, but i'll tell you that's a very lousy way to do it. the label is based on specific file name (and maybe other characteristics), so if you change the file name, move it around or even edit it in some ways, the label no longer works. plus, if you delete the picture, the custom label stays put and there is no easy way to clear it, the result is a miserable mess. i suggest you do it the right way by editing the "image description" field of the exif/meta data.

there is an excellent app for that:

this one is well coded, clean and easy to use.

there is also a free app:
this one is ok, but sort of cranky to use. the only reason i keep this one on my phone is it supports meta data for video, the first one only works with pictures. the only time i used the second one was when i need to do something about video meta. you might want to have both if you need to work with video.

Submitted by Chuck on Friday, April 10, 2015

I use the voice over custom label tool, usually after I take the photo, or in the camera roll folder.

First be certain the voice over focus is on the photo you want to name, or you may accidentally re-label your buttons :)

I do a two finger double tap and hold, you will hear three tones and then "text field is editing". NowI can either type or dictate a label, then I double tap "save"

This works well enough for me to find photos I want to share, or show.

If I need a more permanent solution, I either download, or email the photo to my desktop computer where I can edit the photo name.
Not elegant, but it works.

PS. I have not had the problem of the label staying after the photo is deleted described above.
Once I delete the photo, all is gone.

Submitted by Karina Velazquez on Saturday, April 11, 2015

hello Carla, I had the same question and at this moment I tried the simple VO label option and it works perfectly and without problems when deleting so you must try it

Submitted by LaBoheme on Saturday, April 11, 2015

just how does one know if the label remains if one deletes the photo first? the label will not get used again, so to the view of the user, the label is gone. the only way to clear the label is to clear it first before delete any photos or apps.
labeling photos with vo custom label is like label all the songs in your music library with vo custom label, you can imagine what kind of mess it must be. if you have 100 photos, these labels gets loaded in the memory all the time. but i guess this doesn't matter to most...to each his own.

Submitted by Santiago on Saturday, April 11, 2015

The last time I tried doing that was when my older iPhone was running iOS 6. At that time, I remember how unstable labeling photos with VoiceOver was. For some reason, it never was able to recognize the labeled photos, or just called them, "Photo 001, 002, etc," when accessed through other apps, like the messages app. I'll give it another try, otherwise, I'll probably have to tag the photo itself from a third-party app or from my Mac, considering they're all stored on iCloud, not my phone itself.

Submitted by Carla on Saturday, April 11, 2015

<p>I tried the VO custom label method and it worked great. I did accidentally label the wrong photo the first time, but I was able to delete the photo since I had another copy of it in my photo stream. I plan to look at the other two apps that were mentioned to see how they work as well. . Thanks again. Carla</p>

Submitted by Adam Samec on Saturday, December 3, 2016


I found adding a custom voiceOver label really the best solution, thank you. The biggest advantage of this is that the label is being read everywhere you find and select the labeled image, no matter where you have added the label, at least in IOS 10.1. Be it in albums like Places, Favorites, and People, or in Collections and Moments or camera roll opened from the Camera app or from other apps like Messages, Mail and third-party apps, such as knfbReader. However, adding labels works only from the Photos app, either from an album or moments, but not from the camera roll opened from other apps.

And even more, the label added using VoiceOver on an iOs device is actually the description of the image, which you can show and change also in the Photos app on Mac, from the Info dialog window opened via the Command-I keyboard shortcut. And vice versa, if you set the description on your Mac, it will be read as the custom label on your iOS device. You can also edit the image, add filters, rotate,etc. or move it to a different album, and the label will be preserved, as opposed to what was said earlier in a comment here, at least this is how it works now. And when you duplicate a labeled image, the label will be added also to the duplicate. The reason why this all works is that the label, i.e., description, is actually a metadata stored in the file rather than just a label attached to an item on the screen, so it will always stay on the given image even if other images are moved or deleted.

Therefore, I don't have much reason to use a third-party iOS app for changing metadata, though one reason might be if you want to edit descriptions or other metadata of multiple images at once, which is not possible with custom VO labels when you ad them on iOS. However, I have not found an iOS app which can modify this description metadata set by the custom VO label feature, and which is accessible, can access the camera roll and find images easily using Collections and Albums, not even the aforementioned Pixelgarde can do that. But you can set the labels for multiple images at once from the Photos app on Mac in the Info dialog if you open it when more images are selected, so better to do it on the Mac.

Kind regards

Submitted by LaBoheme on Tuesday, January 24, 2017

ios 10 does add meta data to the picture files. strictly speaking, this is no longer a "custom label", it add image caption to IPTC, which is readable by many many photo applications. one can't edit it with many exif editors because the caption is put in IPTC and not EXIF. if you have a proper app, you should be able to read and edit the caption.

Submitted by Adam Samec on Tuesday, January 24, 2017


while this label is actually a metadata, I suspect it gets removed from the file when you share it. I tried sending myself a labeled image and after I saved it back to my gallery, the label was gone. That's a shame a bit, as you can't share your labeled images with others this way. EDIT: this is not true. Now, I tried it again, and the label was preserved.

Submitted by LaBoheme on Tuesday, January 24, 2017

can you elaborate? just how did you share it? many social media sites strip off all meta info when you upload a picture, and i believe iMessage reduce the resolution if your file is large and you are using cellular network, though i never pay attention to whether it remove meta data. the only sure way to keep your pictures intact--resolution, meta data and everything, is to keep copies on local storage. and i'm pretty sure if you just email your pics as attachments in email, everything will remain the same.

Submitted by Adam Samec on Tuesday, January 24, 2017

I am sorry, a moment ago I tried sending myself a labeled image via Mail app, first using the Share button in the Photos app and trying both applying the image size medium optimization and the original, and then tried attaching the image from the Mail app, and in all three cases the label was preserved. I don't know what I did wrong the first time I was trying it, probably I picked another image.

Anyway, it's good to know it works, as you can ask someone sighted to label images for you, either on a computer or a mobile device and send them to you.

Submitted by Macglenn on Friday, September 15, 2017

Create an album and title photos
1) Create an Album in iPhoto
2) Add the photos to the album
3) Title the photos

Create an iCloud photo sharing album and add photos and titles
1) Click on the LAST picture in the set (iCloud puts the last picture added at the top of the page)
2) Click on the title and copy it
3) Click on the Share icon (box with arrow)
4) Click on iCloud Photo Sharing
5) Paste the Title in over the word “Comment”
6) Click on New Shared Album
7) Enter the title for the Album
8) Enter a description for the Album (type over the title it has automatically entered)
9) Click “Create”
10) Click the text of the next to last picture and copy it
11) Click on the next to last picture to select it
12) Click on the Share icon
13) Click on iCloud Photo Sharing
14) Paste the title in the Comment box
15) Click on the Album (it should be at the top of the list)
REPEAT STEPS 10-15 for each additional picture to add, moving backwards one picture at a time.
CHECK that your photos have titles by viewing them on your phone in your Shared Albums. You may need to click on “1 Comment” at the bottom of the screen.

Click on the People icon (Head in circle)
Click on Public Website. Copy the link. This is what you will share with others so they can see your pictures.

Submitted by Caroline on Saturday, August 10, 2019

In reply to by Chuck

I also wondered this, ive just tried it andits brilliant thanks

Submitted by Gary c on Thursday, April 2, 2020

I just copied a number of photos to my wife’s iPhone 6s plus running iOS 13.4 from my iPhone SE running iOS 12.4.1 via AirDrop. The photo labels did not survive. Disappointing. I do not see the descriptions on the photos in my iCloud photos folder on my PC, but this is not surprising since Microsoft does not support the IPTC standard very well. I’ve been thinking about getting a program that will let me view IPTC information on the PC, but I haven’t done it yet.