Google Photos Update: What has changed?

Learn Google Photos Book cover

My book, Learn Google Photos 2020, was published on September 1, 2020. As listed in the Introduction to the book, I am keeping a web page with an ongoing list of updates. These changes include both official announcements of new features as well as things I happen to notice with the dates I noticed them.

Since these changes affect the book, I am noting the chapter that needs to be updated accordingly. If you have the printed book, you may want to scribble a note in the affected section. Here are the changes I’ve noted since publication. 

11/11/20: Chapter 1Announcement – Unlimited Free storage will be going away as of June 1, 2021. This is very disappointing, but it is understandable as Google’s servers receive 28 Billion new photos and videos every week. Since images are personal content, they are not used for Google’s advertising. I, for one, would rather see them start charging as opposed to stop storing our photos. The good news is that all photos and videos uploaded at High Quality before June 1, 2021 and currently stored for free will be exempt from the new rules. Current pricing for 100GB is $2/mo. See the official announcement here: Updating Google Photos’ storage policy to build for the future.

11/1/20: Chapter 1 – Recover Storage is no longer available as an option when you are a Google One Subscriber. Recover Storage is the process that will change file sizes to High Quality when they were uploaded in Original Quality. The option is found on the Web version under Settings. But, it’s not there if you are a Google One Subscriber. The option that appears instead is “Manage Subscription.” However – if you switch from Original Quality to High Quality, you will be prompted to recover storage from any existing Original Quality content.

11/1/20: Chapter 5 – The “Explore Map” that appears on screen after choosing Search in the mobile app is no longer a full-width button. It is the first tile amongst all the other place tiles. The tile is labeled “Your Map.” I have not seen any announcements on this so maybe they’re just testing? For now, I see the new layout only on Android devices.

10/22/20: Chapter 2 – Introducing an iOS 14 home screen widget for your Google Photos. Official announcement

10/20/20: Chapter 10 – Google is re-launching their monthly subscription print service. Get 10 high quality prints mailed to you every month for $6.99. Here’s the official announcement.

10/15/20: Chapter 10 – The “For You” section is now gone from the Web interface, along with a few other tweaks to make the web more like the mobile menus. The creations will now be found under Utilities in both Web and mobile. Plus – on mobile – they initially show up in the Memories section in Recent Highlights.

10/8/20: Chapter 10 – In the moviemaker, we now have the choice to render the movies vertically (Portrait) or horizontal (Landscape)

9/30/20: Chapter 7Google announces a new photo editor. Rolling out on Android starting today. Here’s my article, including 3 videos: A new editor for Google Photos Android

9/29/20: Chapter 9 – I noticed an error on page 131. Shared Library is now called “Partner Sharing” and it’s found by clicking the account button at top right and choosing Photos Settings, then Partner sharing.

9/21/20: Chapter 6 Data Transfer Project news from the Google official blog. Using Takeout to transfer your photo library to Flickr or OneDrive, you can now specify albums to transfer rather than the entire library. I have not yet been successful with the transfer to OneDrive process. I’ll try this now and let you know.

9/18/20: Chapter 2 with update to iOS 14, the iPhone now asks for you to give access to “Selected photos” or “All photos.” If you mistakenly choose “selected photos” you must then go to System settings, Google Photos in order to choose “All Photos.”

9/3/20: Chapter 7 iPhone only – video editing with light and color adjustments, filters, and more. Using the video scrubber, you can preview any edits applied throughout the video. see article by The Verge

Anything else? If you’ve noticed a change that I did not mention, please leave a comment ok?

2 thoughts on “Google Photos Update: What has changed?”

  1. on 9/21/20 you said: Chapter 6 Data Transfer Project news from the Google official blog. Using Takeout to transfer your photo library to Flickr or OneDrive, you can now specify albums to transfer rather than the entire library. I have not yet been successful with the transfer to OneDrive process. I’ll try this now and let you know.

    do you let us know yet? if so, I have overlooked it. please advise. thank you.
    marc/iowa

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