Google Photos Ends Unlimited Storage – What To Do

Google Photos has from 1 June changed its operation, with the cloud service no longer giving users unlimited free storage for images.

It was back in November 2020, when Google announced the unpopular move, and would ends its unlimited cloud storage option on 1 June 2021.

Google Photos had been launched back in 2015 and quickly generated publicity, as it promised unlimited uploads and storage of people’s photos, free-of-charge, at a time when many cloud providers were charging fees.

Google cloud

Google Photos

But now six years later Google has from 1 June 2021, limited customers to 15GB of storage per account.

Some disgruntled users have complained about the move on social media, alleging that Google had used its unlimited storage option as a ploy to acquire market share from rivals, with some alleging monopolistic behaviour.

But what are the options for Google Photos users going forward?

Well Google users can now acquire more cloud storage via the Google One plans.

In the UK, Google One will provide 2TB of storage for a monthly costs of £7.99.

But much depends on how a customer actually uses Google Photos.

First off, it should be noted that any photos or videos that has been uploaded before 1 June will not actually count towards the free Google Photos storage, and users still get 15GB of free storage with their Google account.

For users with a Google Pixel phone, they will continue to receive free Google Photos storage for various file types, depending on model.

But for users that utilise Google Photos as a ‘back up and sync’ feature to backup their smartphone photos, now may be a good time to check the setup so as to avoid hitting the new storage limit.

For example, do your images really need to be backed in ‘high quality’?

Amazon alternative?

Alternatively, a user can simply bite the bullet and move to an alternative cloud storage provider, or even go a bit old school and backup their images regularly to a personal computer instead.

But for many people cloud storage is their personal choice. So if Google Photos no longer offers unlimited storage, if there any others that still do?

Yes is the answer, with one of Google’s online competitors.

Many people nowadays are Amazon Prime subscribers.

For £7.99 per month, people typically get Amazon’s next-day delivery service, as well as access to Amazon Prime Video service.

But many people don’t realise that included in the Prime subscription bundle is Amazon Photos, which offers limitless capacity for full-resolution photographs.

The final choice for users worried about exceeding their 15GB storage limit on Google Photos, is to consider going through their Google Photos library and deleting blurry images, or those images and videos that are no longer required.

Tom Jowitt

Tom Jowitt is a leading British tech freelancer and long standing contributor to Silicon UK. He is also a bit of a Lord of the Rings nut...

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