FeaturedLightroom Mobile

How to “Work Offline” In Lightroom Mobile (And When You Might Want To)

Mornin’ everybody – here’s to great Monday (everybody, come on, do it with me….”groan!”).

OK, today we’re looking at why you might want to take a Collection “Offline” in Lightroom Mobile, and how to do it (I covered this about a year and half ago, but the interface has changed pretty dramatically, so that old way doesn’t work. Plus, we have a LOT of new folks here on LKT so I thought it was time to revisit it, because this is really helpful to know.

The Main Reason
You’re going to be somewhere where there is not Internet access (or really, really slow internet), and so you won’t be able to pull down the full-size Smart Preview of all the images in a particular collection (without that internet connection, you’re just looking at low res thumbnails. When you click on an image, it pulls down the right res directly from the Adobe Cloud). This way, you can edit, share, and view images in all their full preview size glory at any time.

This is ideal if you have a portfolio collection sync’d over to Lightroom Mobile, and you want to be able to access it anytime, regardless of whether there’s internet or not, here’s how you do it:


STEP ONE: In Collection View (where you see all your collection thumbnails), tap on the three dots to the right of the collection to bring up a set of options for this collection. Tap on “Enable Offline Editing” (as shown above).


STEP TWO: Once you choose “Enable Offline Editing,” the dialog box you see above appears letting you know that downloading these images to your mobile device (instead of just pulling them from the cloud, like usual, as needed), will take up 519 MB of space on your phone (or tablet), and it’s kind enough to tell you how you have available. If you’re cool with that, tap the Download button to take that collection “offline” and download the images in that collection directly to your mobile device. That’s all there is to it.

Hope you found that helpful. 🙂

PROGRAMMING NOTE: I’m moving my regular Tuesday posts to Wednesday (so I’ll be blogging here Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays), starting tomorrow. However, I am looking for a great Lightroom writer/guru who wants to work with me here on the site, sharing some killer tips every Tuesday. It’s a paid gig (don’t get excited, you won’t be making Porsche payments with it, but maybe it’ll buy the gas), so if you’re interested, leave me a comment here, or hit me up over on my Facebook page and leave me a direct message there.

Have a good one everybody, and see ya here again on Wednesday!



P.S. I did another “From Flat to Fabulous in Photoshop” tutorial today over on my blog if you get a sec. Here’s the link. 



  1. Amber Weikel 8 October, 2018 at 17:53 Reply

    I’m struggling I do not have that option available on my Galaxy Tab S4.
    The options I am given are
    Add photos
    enable auto add
    store locally
    Share album
    move to folder
    and slideshow

    I live and work in a remote area where I don’t have Wi-Fi or service on my device how would I go about doing this?

  2. Nick 2 November, 2017 at 11:06 Reply

    Scott-thanks. I was so frustrated that I couldn’t edit photos on the metro to work like I had hoped. Your trick worked! Photography isn’t my day job so I have to find time to work on it when I can.

  3. Todd Schnack 29 August, 2016 at 23:36 Reply

    Hi Scott,

    Please comment on the offline editing process for directly downloading RAW images to the iPad in the field with no internet connection. Many users (as myself) go on remote travel excursions where there may be absolutely no internet connectivity for days/weeks. We would like to take advantage of the new RAW file capabilities and download directly from a card reader or camera and edit RAW images on the iPad while in the field and synchronize when back home or with Internet connection.

    How does this work if LR Mobile cannot verify your subscription thru an active internet connection?

    It would be great if you can cover this mobile workflow

    • Lianne 27 March, 2017 at 23:42 Reply

      Hi Would love a post on this as well. Heading to Africa and with limited power and weight hoping to take the Ipad over a laptop and use a NEXTto Di to back up images. any assistance on working directly from an external source would b great.

  4. Guus 5 August, 2016 at 11:46 Reply

    When I click the 3 dots, the menu is not showing up as you show in the first image.
    my choices are only 3 and not 10!
    add photos
    clear cache
    so as you show us to work off line, it doesn’t work for me.
    explain me please why I don’t have that menu?

  5. salsaguy 5 August, 2016 at 00:01 Reply

    Scott, is it able to let you save to the external/expanded micro SD card (more room) instead of on the internal memory of the phone/tablet?

Leave a reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *