With iOS backups, it is still a little confusing about what happens to images taken on an iOS device. When you perform a backup (automatically or otherwise), are the photos and videos copied as well? It varies!
- Do you have iCloud Photos enabled?
- Do you back up via iCloud or via iTunes to a computer?
From the answers to these questions, you can find out if the backup contains your photos and movies
iCloud Photos enabled: If your iOS device is turned on, neither iTunes nor iCloud makes backups of photos or videos. Instead, the photo / video backup is completely handled as part of the iCloud sync. (Note that Apple has recently changed its name from the iCloud Photo Library if you're used to seeing it.) ICloud Photos retains the full, high-resolution versions of all photos and videos.
iCloud Photos Disabled: In this case, iTunes will copy all photos and videos locally. You can also use the Photos (or iPhoto) app to import photos to a library, and delete and manage what's stored on your phone or tablet via these apps or photo captures.
iCloud Backup: An iCloud backup is another matter. Apple Notes on Support Only, "iCloud Backup can contain photos and videos in your photos or camera rolls."
It's hardly calming and I've never managed to get a more definite answer from Apple or in testing! (I do not think it's a plot to push people to iCloud Photos, but it can explain the circumstances better.)
If you are using iCloud backup and not iCloud images, consider routinely downloading photos to ensure that you not not lost
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