Google will end its basic Google Photos service promise: free, unlimited image storage.
When it was launched, Google Photos quickly became successful thanks to a very strong promise: to be able to store for free and unlimited all the photos that we have one day taken with a digital camera. Enough to have a backup of all your photos in one place, and be able to easily sort them chronologically or do research.
Today Google announces the breaking of this promise: from June 1, 2021, it will no longer be possible to add unlimited new photos or videos.
15 GB of free storage
From June 1, each photo and video that will be added to the Google Photos account will be deducted from the free 15 GB offered with each account and shared between Google Drive storage and Gmail storage.
This means that old photos and videos saved up to June will not be counted.
L’exception Google Pixel
The brand’s smartphones, from the Pixel 1 to the Pixel 5, are not affected by this change. They will still be able to store unlimited photos from June 1.
Estimate the space you have left
Google has set up a special page on the Google Photos site to assess how quickly your account will fill up allocated storage.
It is obviously possible to extend this storage capacity with paid subscriptions to Google One.
The firm also promises to release in June 2021 a new tool to easily save a copy of the photos stored on its servers.
The new double-edged business model
We can all the same wonder about this change in policy, which Google justifies by an increasingly strong demand on its servers, which would require it ultimately and without change on its part to limit the performance of the service.
Except that, if Google promises that the photos are not used for advertising purposes, they are for other uses. Google uses in particular the billions of photos stored on its servers to train its search algorithms in the image.
With its new policy, Google wants to both continue this use of photos, while paying for it with a paid subscription. What to give arguments to its competitors like Apple iCloud which promise to keep the photos very private.