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Home / Tips and Tricks / How to back up your iPhone photos and videos with Google Photos for free «iOS & iPhone :: Gadget Hacks

How to back up your iPhone photos and videos with Google Photos for free «iOS & iPhone :: Gadget Hacks



Since iCloud was introduced in 2011, you only get 5 GB of free cloud storage with your Apple account. With iPhone backups, app data, iCloud Drive files, and even email messages (if you have a Mac, Me, or iCloud email address), you'll quickly run out of backup photos and videos. Fortunately, Google offers 15 GB of free storage, making it easy to upload the camera's security role.

While $ 0.99 per month for 50GB total iCloud storage sounds like a bargain, it's not necessary if you only have 10GB of media you want to store. So if you constantly get the "not enough storage" warning from Apple on your iPhone, don't hit "Upgrade Storage" yet. Google Photos can be anything you need.

When you sign up for a Gmail account, you automatically receive 1

5 GB of free cloud storage. While it may seem like everything for email and Google Drive documents, it also includes photos and videos you store in Google Photos, which has a free app for both iOS and Android. And if you allow Google to automatically change your photos and videos, you'll get free unlimited storage that you can't beat.

Which Google Images will back up

Google Photos only looks at the "Camera Roll" album in the Apple Photos app, and it will back up any type of video, regular photos, GIFs (animations) and live images. All photos and videos in the albums " Hidden" or "Deleted" will not be backed up or even displayed in Google Photos.

Step 1: Install or Update Google Photos

Once you have downloaded Google Photos from the App Store, launch the app and tap "Allow" when prompted to give it access to photos on the device. Also, give access to sending messages, if you wish, which is not necessary. If you already have the app, make sure it is updated to the latest version.

Step 2: Choose to back up or wait

The home screen immediately shows them available backup options. By default, "Backup & sync" is disabled, so leave it alone if you don't want to back up just yet. If you do not want to back up, which would apply if you just want to back up specific images and video clips and not everything, turn it off and confirm it on the instant message and then proceed to step 3.

If you want to back up directly, the option "High quality" is controlled, giving you access to unlimited free storage. Just know your photos and video clips will be compressed into reduced file sizes to save space. If you have no plans to cross the 15GB limit and prefer the media not to be compressed, select "Original" instead of saving full resolution versions against your quota.

Step 3: Create or sign in to your Google Account [19659005] When you sign in, it can either be the Gmail information you have or just the Google account information if you signed up with Google using a third-party email address. As long as you have a Google Account, be it with Gmail or without, you still get 15 GB of free storage or unlimited storage when you allow photo compression. If you do not yet have a Google Account, you can create one at a time.

Touch "Sign in to back up" or "Sign in", depending on whether you are backing up or not, and selecting "Continue" when prompted to allow Google Photos to use google.com for the sign-in process.

If you previously signed in to your Google Account on other Google services, such as through YouTube, Hangouts, Chrome, Google Drive, or the Google app, it may display your account name and email address along with "Confirm "instead of" Login "options, then select. To use another Google Account, click the drop-down menu and select either the second account or select "Add account."

When you need to create a new account, click "Log in" or "Add account," press "Create account" and then follow the steps on the screen. Note, however, that this method requires you to create a Gmail account. If you just want a Google Account, sign up for a web browser at accounts.google.com/signupwithoutgmail instead and then sign in to the Google Photos app.

Step 4: Watch it in action (if backed up directly) [19659005] When logged in, on the Photos tab, you will see all the photos and videos stored in the album "Camera Roll" in the Apple Photos app. If you chose to back up everything at once, there would be an indicator at the top of the search bar that shows its progress, as well as a "free space" message that we will go into later.

Step 5: Back up and sync later at any time

If you did not choose to back up everything directly on the Home screen, you can reverse the backup now or later, and there are some ways to do this. At the top of the "Photos" tab below the search bar, there will be a "Backup and sync" switch.

You can also initiate a full media backup by tapping the menu icon on the sidebar, selecting "Settings" and tapping "Backing up and syncing" at the top of the page. Here's how to back up your backup immediately.

Step 6: Back up and sync only selected content [19659005] If you do not have "Backup and sync" enabled, you can also select and choose what you want to upload for secure storage. Images that have not been backed up will contain an overlaid mole icon on top of their thumbnails.

Long press on a photo or video and a blue column will appear in the thumbnail. Alternatively, you can press the ellipse (•••) in the search field and select "Select photos". You can then continue tapping and selecting other images that have not been backed up to Google Photos yet.

When done, press the ellipse (•••) at the top right and then select "Backup."

You can also back up only one photo when viewing the entire image, not the thumbnail. Click the ellipse (•••) at the top right of the image and then "Backup."

Step 7: Free up space on your iPhone

One of the main reasons for backing up your photos is to free up space on your iPhone. Apple's iCloud has a feature for to automatically do this if enabled, saving you high-resolution images and videos online with a slim optimized version on your iPhone. You still have access to your photos and can save full version versions whenever you need.

Google has a similar feature where you can still view uploaded content in Google Photos as optimized versions, but get rid of all things still residing in your Apple Photos app – things suck up your local storage – you have to do it manually.

For example, if you just backed up your entire library, you might see a "release space" under the search bar, which you can press to start the process. You can also find this option by opening the sidebar menu and tapping the tooth icon to open Settings and then selecting "Managing device storage". From there, tap "Free Space" and confirm with "Delete" on the pop-up window.

If you decide you just want to delete an image or two, you select the image as described in the previous step, and then select "Delete the unit's original" from the ellipsis menu (•••).

Keep in mind that when Google Photos deletes your photos and videos, it's like deleting them yourself in the Photos app. This means that for redundancy to prevent accidental deletion, the images and video are not immediately removed from your device.

Deleted items are saved for 30 days in the album "Last Deleted" in Apple Photos. They will be permanently deleted after the 30-day marking, but if you need to free up space immediately, go there, press "Select" and then "Delete All".

Pay for more storage

As mentioned earlier, Apple offers 5 GB of free via iCloud, while Google gives you 15 GB. Upgrade to Google One – Google's premium subscription service – is a great idea if your photo and video library is bigger. Cooked to Google One are exclusive things like adding family members (to use your cloud storage), direct access to Google support and other discounted discounts (such as Google Play credits and special promotions).

Remember that Google storage is an aggregate of Google Drive, Gmail, and Google Photos. For example, if you have other Google Drive files that use 10 GB of storage space, 5 GB of photos, videos, and attachments will remain in Gmail and Google Photos combined.

Current levels for Google One are as follows (as of February 2019). But, as previously said, if you don't mind having your photos and videos scaled down, you don't need to upgrade to Google One because image storage becomes unlimited.

  • 100GB for $ 1.99 / month
  • 200GB for $ 2.99 / month
  • 2TB for $ 9.99 / month
  • 10TB for $ 99.99 / month
  • ] 20 TB for $ 199.99 / month
  • 30 TB for $ 299.99 / month

Many of us are unlikely to need more than 10 TB. Most external hard drives that we would use with our desktops and laptops are after all 4 TB, max. Most of us will lean on the 100 GB level for larger libraries. Note that this level is between iCloud's 50 GB and 200 GB options. Interestingly, both Apple and Google depend on $ 2.99 for 200GB, but Apple has a good 50GB for $ 0.99 a month.

Using iCloud Photos & Google Photos Together

You can use iCloud Photos and Google Photos simultaneously for redundancy if you find that this gives you more peace of mind (extra backup) and flexibility (pull up albums on Android platforms).

The following can read more complicated than how it works in practice. The most important thing to remember is that both services play well together because Google Photos is aware of how iCloud Photos performs backups and storage optimization.

If you use iCloud Photos without optimizing storage, Google Photos will restore the entire resolution images. However, if iCloud Photos has replaced the original images with optimized (low) devices, Google Photos first starts iCloud Photos to download the original, complete images from iCloud, back up those files to Google, and then iCloud Photos replaces the original with the optimized versions. It seems that the app knows how and when it should be initiated if space is limited.

In other words, if there is only 5 GB of storage space on the iPhone but 10 GB of original images have to be withdrawn from iCloud, iCloud Photos and Google Photos automate a gradual download and backup of images without losing the iPhone and its limited storage space. Perhaps 1 GB is downloaded before it is removed for the next 1 GB of images to be called. All this takes place in the background, beyond our control.

For best practices, make sure that this backup (as with any backup you do) occurs when iPhone is connected to both a power source and Wi-Fi – and you do not actively take or edit photos while the process is running.

Make sure iCloud Photos has restored the optimized versions and Google Photos has backed up (to Google's servers) full-featured images.

Resize details during backup

Let's say you decide on "Original" for upload size (which is what I recommend). Photos – also unique Apple formats such as High-Efficiency Image Codec (HEIC) and Live Photos – backed up to Google Photos without any problem. This means that when you download the images to your iPhone or computer, they are presented in the same format as if you drew them directly from the iOS Photos app.

Keep in mind that Live Photos, when viewed in Google Photos, will be played as a short video loop. If you want to download Live Photos back to the album "Camera Roll" in Apple Photos, you have to do them one by one, because Live Photos cannot be downloaded directly from Google Photos. When viewing a Live photo, select the ellipse (•••) and select "Download". If you do not see "Download", you probably have never deleted the originals from the Apple Photos app.

But there is caution to be aware of video. Upgrading to Google One for a higher storage level means that all uploads / backups will be in their full original resolution. However, if you are in the free 15GB level, all video clips over HD (1080p) will be lowered in the backup to HD (ie 4K videos will be lower). Apple's space-saving format, HEVC (High-Efficiency Video Codec) is supported in Google Photos, but the mileage may vary – on message cards, certain people see that Google converts these videos to H.264.

It seems that the Free Level, Google, implemented this space-saving strategy to give users more mileage. Of course, this encourages upgrading to Google One for those who are serious about backing up videos.

Cover image and screenshots of David Chien / Gadget Hacks

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