Google Photos can be as simple, or as complex, as you want.

Google Photos was created in 2015 to address the issue of people taking thousands of photos with their phones. It was designed to free you from the burden of your photos and leave you with the pure joy of exploring them. No work on your part. Just install the app on your phone, turn on the Backup and let go!

Quite a promise, right? Have things changed since then? Yes, and No. It can still be that simple. Just install the app on your phone, turn on the Auto-Backup setting, and let it go. All your photos will be safely copied to the cloud and kept in date order. You can get a new phone and not worry. Just install the Google Photos app on the new phone and you see all your photos.

All your photos in one place, in date order. Want to see a photo you took on a trip to Mount Rushmore in 2018? Just scroll thru the dates and you’ll see them. Don’t remember what year you went there? Just search for Mount Rushmore and you can find it that way. No work on your part. No tagging of photos. Google’s Artificial Intelligence knows what Mt. Rushmore looks like and will find the photos for you.

If you’re interested in the history of Google Photos, check out this video of our Interview of David Lieb, the creator of Google Photos.

How does it get complex?

After a while, you’ll have a lot of photos in your Google Photos account. You may want to make albums, you may want to share photos, edit them, share in different ways, make collages and movies. The possibilities go on and on. And the devil is in the details. For some people you can share directly thru Google Photos, for others you need to send photos in text messages. When you delete photos there are different techniques, one way deletes all copies of a photo, another way deletes just from the phone – leaving the cloud copy in place. Covering all these details is how my book about Google Photos gets to be 150 pages long!

And then, Google Photos keeps changing! I’ve been a Google-recognized product expert in Google Photos since 2015 and I still learn new things about it every day. I try to keep up and write down every update on a special page: I’ve made it almost a full-time job to keep up and understand every nook and cranny of Google Photos, but you don’t have to!

Keep it Simple

My point for this article is that you don’t need to understand all the details. Well, maybe about deleting, if you’re going to delete photos, you do need to understand what you’re deleting. See this article. You can still just install the Google Photos app on the phone that you use for taking pictures, turn on the Backup feature and watch it upload all your photos to your Google account in the cloud. Ok, there is one more thing you need to do – look at your photos in the cloud: It’s Google Photos’ job to upload your photos to the cloud, it’s your job to verify that it succeeded.

Once the photos are there, there’s nothing else you need to do. You can edit them, but you don’t have to. You can make albums and share them, but you don’t have to. All your photos in one place, and Google will periodically send you groups of photo memories to remind you of special times and people.

Relax! You got this! And, when you are ready to learn more, you know where we are!


One reply

  1. Thanks for simplifying Google Photos for us! It’s reassuring to know that even with its complexities, we can still enjoy the simplicity of having all our photos safely stored and easily accessible.

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