How to Easily Cut Out and Share Photos on iOS 16 and iPadOS 16

Have you ever wanted to remove a person or object from a photo and share it with someone? Or perhaps you're not a fan of the background in an image? With the latest iOS 16 update, Apple has made it incredibly easy to cut out or lift subjects or objects from photos and use them anywhere you want. In this article, we will guide you through the process of using the photo cutout feature on iPhones and iPads running iOS 16 and iPadOS 16.

What Is Photo Cutout?

Photo cutout, technically known as “Lifting Subject From the Image,” allows you to precisely cut out a person, animal, or object from an image, removing the background. With the photo cutout feature in iOS 16, you no longer need a third-party app to remove backgrounds from images, saving valuable storage space on your iPhone. Let's explore how photo cutout works step-by-step on iPhone and iPad.

How to Cut Out and Share a Photo on iPhone and iPad

The steps for cutting out and sharing a photo remain the same on both iPhone and iPad, as long as they are running iOS 16 and iPadOS 16, respectively. For the purpose of this guide, we will be using an iPhone.

  1. Go to your iPhone's home screen and swipe up. Then, swipe left until you see the App Library. Tap on the Photos app icon to open it.

  2. Once the Photos app opens, scroll to the photo from which you want to cut out the subject. Tap on the photo to open it. To select the subject you want to cut out, long-press on it. For example, you can long-press on a pair of shoes in the image.

    Pro Tip: If you have many apps on your phone, you can use the search bar at the top of the App Library to quickly find the Photos app.

  3. When you long-press the subject, iOS 16 will highlight it with a white boundary. This indicates that the subject is ready to be lifted. At this point, you can either drag and drop it into another app or use the pop-up menu to copy or share the cutout. Tap on “Share” to open the share sheet and share it with anyone or any app. Tapping on “Copy” will copy the cutout to the clipboard.

    Pro Tip: You can use the “Assign to Contact” option to set the cutout as a contact photo.

  4. Once the cutout is copied to the clipboard, open any app and tap on the text field twice. Then, select “Paste.” The photo cutout will be pasted into the app, allowing you to use it wherever you want.


  1. Can I cut out and share photos on my iPad?

    Yes, you can. The process is identical to that on an iPhone.

  2. Does photo cutout work in other apps?

    Yes, photo cutout works in apps like Safari and Notes. However, it is currently limited to Apple apps and does not work in third-party photo apps like Google Photos.

  3. Can I choose which object to cut out from an image?

    Currently, you cannot choose individual objects to cut out from an image. If there are multiple subjects in the same image, iOS 16 will either lift all of them or prioritize the primary focus of the image.

  4. Why doesn't my iPhone have this feature?

    The photo cutout feature is exclusive to iOS 16. If you haven't updated your iPhone to iOS 16 yet, you won't have access to this feature. Make sure to check the list of iOS 16-supported devices to see if your iPhone is compatible. Additionally, note that this feature is available on iPhones with an A12 Bionic chip or later.

Cut and Paste Anything, Anywhere

The photo cutout feature in iOS 16 and iPadOS 16 is a game-changer for iPhone and iPad users. It allows you to easily remove backgrounds and cut out objects from photos, all without the need for additional apps. Whether you're editing photos, creating screenshots, or browsing the web, the photo cutout feature is seamlessly integrated into the iOS ecosystem. Simply tap, hold, and lift to unlock a whole new level of creativity and convenience.