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Google Photos

 

Google have recently released a stand-alone Photo app for Android and iOS.
 
It works as the central hub for all the photos that you’ve taken on your device, as you’d expect it to, but also automatically backs up your images to your Google cloud storage.
 
This functionality is not new to Android, but the way it happens has been dramatically improved. Previously you could back up your photos to the cloud with Google but it required the Google+ app, which meant it was slightly cumbersome. Your photos were also resized to 2048px (on the longest side - approximately 3MP) in order to not eat in to your Google drive storage. You could of course upload them at their original size, but if you did, you’d have limited space (15GB) for your images, meaning you may run out and need to pay a monthly fee for more storage.
 
The new Google Photos app has unlimited uploads at up to 16MP for photos and 1080p for video! Some compression is applied to your photos to reduce their size, but I was hard pushed to tell the difference between an original 8MP shot and the backed up version. This is very competitive when compared to a company like Apple, who give you 5GB of storage before you need to pay a monthly fee for more.
 
Perhaps the best feature though is the search button. You can search your photos and Google is clever enough to return images that contain what you have searched for. Type “cat” and you see all of your pics containing cats. I tried it with “car”, “tree” and “water” and it is scarily accurate, and I have never tagged any of my photos, it’s all automated. Next time you are looking for that drunken party shot to show your mates, instead of endlessly scrolling to find it you can either search for the date it happened or type “party” and let Google find it for you.
 
Finally, for all you snap-a-holics that cannot stop shooting everything you see, Google Photos has a low storage advisor built in. When you get a bit low on storage on your device, it will suggest deleting photos from your device, to create space, safe in the knowledge that they have been backed up online.
 
All things considered the new Google Photos app is completely game-changing, why would anyone use another service to back up their photos when Google gives you unlimited storage, free automated sorting of your photos, and “Assistant” which automatically tweaks your photos and creates collages, GIFs and videos from your snaps.
 
Download it here.

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