Google has added a major change to its Google Photos cloud storage platform. Google Photos will no longer allow for free unlimited storage of photos and videos, starting June 1, 2021, as part of a change to its unlimited High-quality storage policy. Read on to more about this and what you need to do next.
Google Photos won’t offer free unlimited storage
As announced via a blog post, Google will stop providing free unlimited storage for high-quality photos and videos. Starting June 1, 2021, all the new media uploaded to Google Photos will be a part of the 15GB of free storage offered to every Google account user. This will be also applicable for any Google One subscription you have subscribed to.
This change is also applicable for files stored in other Google apps such as Google Docs, Sheets, Slides, and more. The files in these Google apps will be counted ‘toward the free 15GB of storage’ you have.
However, you don’t need to worry right away because photos and videos backed up before June 1, 2021 will still be considered free and exempt from the storage limit. Only photos uploaded after June 1st will begin counting against the cap.
Additionally, the company says that “over 80 percent of you should still be able to store roughly three more years worth of memories with your free 15 GB of storage.”
This change will not take effect for six months, so you won’t need to change how you use Photos or take any action at this time. After June 1, 2021, over 80% of you should still be able to store roughly three more years’ worth of memories with your free 15 GB of storage.
Meanwhile, Google is also building two tools to help you manage storage. The company said that it will send alerts when you begin to approach that cap, It will also let you manage your backed up photos and videos and pick what you want to keep and what you want to delete. This tool will automatically highlight content such as dark or blurry photos, screenshots, large videos that you may no longer keep on your phone.
More so, you can verify your backup quality at any time in the Photos app by going to back up and sync in Settings. Or you can just click here to estimate how long your storage will last. Google is also going to show a “personalized estimate” which will estimates each user’s average uploads overtime to guess how much longer they’ll be able to use their current tier.
To help you understand how this impacts you personally, you can see an estimate for how long your storage may last. https://t.co/t6XsEjWc46 pic.twitter.com/1zXR9it6qa
— Google Photos (@googlephotos) November 11, 2020
But what will happen after the 15GB data is used up?
Once your 15 GB has been used up, you will have the choice to subscribe to one of the Google One plans if you plan to keep uploading. It starts at $1.99 / month for 100GB and has tiers going through 200GB ($2.99 / month), 2TB ($9.99 / month), and all the way up to 30TB ($149.99 / month).
However, if you are a Pixel owner, there is some good news for you! Pixel owners will still be able to upload high-quality (not original) photos for free after June 1st without those images counting against their cap.