As someone who kept their Flickr photo library going for years longer than I should have, I can attest that one of the things that prevents people from switching photo storage services is the sheer hassle of it: you know that once transferred, your photos would live lives of sunshine and joy, doing the electronic equivalent of scampering through sun-dappled meadows.
Organizing your images and bringing them over from other services is now easier than ever. The most recent Google Photographs update does more than just make it easier to organise your photos on the finest iPhones and Android phones. It also makes getting images from other services like Facebook and iCloud, as well as other sources like cameras and memory cards, much easier.
The Library tab is getting redesigned with the option to view in grid or list mode and filter by type, such as albums, favourites and on-device folders so that you can quickly sort your shots. And the same Import Photos that works with external services makes it easier to get photos from a camera.
But you also know that actually transferring things across is an enormous pain in the backside, so you don’t do it. Making the process easier is a win-win situation: it’s easier for you, and it means more people potentially using Google for all their photo stuff. But that’s not all there is in the new update. There are some cool new tools coming too.
As Google Photos product manager Sophie Kahan writes, “One of my favorite parts of Google Photos is that it takes the work out of managing, finding, reliving, editing and sharing my photos and videos — and all these updates make that a little bit easier.”
Google is also rejigging the Sharing tab, with sections for partner sharing, shared albums and conversations to make it easier to share and to stay on top of what your friends are sharing. This one’s coming to the Android version first and iOS shortly afterwards. The Android version is also getting new contextual suggestions that will make it quicker to access key features such as copying text, cropping images, using Google Lens and so on. The aim is to enable you to do more with fewer taps.
Writer, musician and broadcaster Carrie Marshall has been covering technology since 1998 and is particularly interested in how tech can help us live our best lives. Her CV is a who’s who of magazines, newspapers, websites and radio programmes ranging from T3, Techradar and MacFormat to the BBC, Sunday Post and People’s Friend. Carrie has written thirteen books, ghost-wrote two more and co-wrote another seven books and a Radio 2 documentary series. When she’s not scribbling, she’s the singer in Glaswegian rock band HAVR (havrmusic.com).