3 Ways to Recover Deleted Photos (& Videos) from Samsung Galaxy Phone

Last updated: Apr. 6, 2017

So you just tapped the delete option on your Samsung Galaxy phone and sent some photos (or videos) to the Trash bin, and suddenly you realized there were several files also got mistakenly removed? Now you tried to look up the Trash to restore the items, but where is the Trash in a Samsung Galaxy phone?

There is NO such feature! Unlike PCs, Samsung Galaxy doesn't have a Recycle Bin or Trash to recycle deleted items. More precisely, the current Android OS (your phone is running under) does not provide this feature.

Is there a way to recover deleted photos or videos from a Samsung Galaxy?

There is. In fact, there are several. That's what we're going to show you today: 3 quick methods to undelete the media files.

Please note: this Samsung Galaxy photo recovery guide works for all types of mobile phones such as Galaxy S3, S4, S5, S6 & Galaxy Tab as long as your device runs Google Android OS. Also, it doesn't matter whether your pictures are lost due to accidental deletion, factory reset, or card reformatting, etc.

Keep reading to learn how...

What you'll need:

  • Your Samsung Galaxy phone/tablet
  • A computer
  • Backup files (optional)
  • Android data recovery software (optional)
  • Access to the Internet

First things first

Stop writing new data to your phone — that means do not take additional photos or videos. If your pictures were stored in the mass memory card, remove the card out of your phone and put it in safe place. The reason why you should do this is that any new files you generate could overwrite your lost pictures and videos, thus making them unrecoverable.

Solution 1: Restore from Backups

When to use: you've backed up the media files using Samsung Kies.

Samsung Kies is a software that makes it a lot easier to sync data between the device and your PC or Mac. If you've used the software to back up your media files (pictures, videos, songs, etc.), it's very easy to restore them. This video has more: 

Solution 2: Android Data Recovery Software

When to use: your pictures and videos were saved on your Galaxy internal memory (instead of a memory card).

Dr.Fone is the best Android recovery tool to use for this situation. Besides photos and videos, the program also recovers SMS messages, Contacts, and other types of data from a Galaxy Android device. Best of all, the software allows you to preview the found media items, making it a lot easier to locate the ones you want to retrieve.

Get Dr.Fone Android (for PC)          Get Dr.Fone Android (for Mac)

Here's a quick tutorial:

  1. Connect your Samsung Galaxy device to a computer.
  2. Get Dr.Fone for Android (via above links) and install it on your computer.
  3. Follow the instruction until it scans your Samsung phone or tablet. Make sure to read the instruction texts carefully.
  4. Preview and recover the media files it finds.

Note: if your Samsung Galaxy phone does not have USB Mass Storage, or the above software does not pick up the device as a USB mounted device. Follow the guide in this article to enable USB mass storage mode. Also, before you start, make sure to backup the data on your device just in case.

Solution 3: Try a Photo Recovery Utility

When to use: the lost media files were stored on an SD card attached to your Samsung device.

We recommend Stellar Phoenix Photo Recovery, a comprehensive digital media recovery software that offers both a Windows and MacOS version. You can use it to quickly restore lost images, videos and audio files from almost any storage media including Galaxy phones and tablets. Here's a quick step by step tutorial:

  1. Load the microSD card to a card reader/adapter first, then plug it into your computer.
  2. Get Stellar Photo Recovery and follow the instructions as shown on the app's interface and install the program on your computer.
  3. Now click the big blue button located in the center to start, select the drive your Samsung SD card stands for, define file types you wish to retrieve.
  4. A scan will be conducted to search for your deleted photos.
  5. Once the scan is complete, see if your files are there and save them.

Final Words

Samsung Galaxy phones and tablets are great at capturing photos and videos. But due to various reasons, these precious files can disappear. When that happens, it can be really frustrating even devastating. Fortunately, it's not impossible to retrieve the items as long as you act quickly and take the right steps.

Hope you find these Galaxy photo recovery tutorials helpful, and you've managed to get your valuable data back. Remember to use Kies to make backups of all your media items from now on, as we know, recovery can be hard but backup is always easy.

Chris Hwang

Chris is a certified computer technician since 2008. He writes everything related to computer issues and loves helping people solve problems. Currently, he's extending his interests into cloud computing.

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