8 December 2023

15 Google Photos Hacks for Photo Enthusiasts

By Ronald Smith

Hey there! If you’re a photo lover like me, you’ll be thrilled to know that Google Photos is not just a basic photo tool. It’s actually a treasure trove of amazing features that can make organizing your photos a piece of cake!

Whether you’re a pro with a fancy camera or just someone who wants to keep your precious family memories safe, Google Photos has got your back. Today, I’m going to share with you 15 awesome Google Photos tips and tricks that will blow your mind. Let’s dive in!

1. Get Creative with Photo Editing

Hey, let’s talk about Google Photos! They’ve got this handy little photo editing tool that’s perfect for making quick edits to your pics. Now, it’s not as fancy as something like GIMP or Adobe Photoshop, but it gets the job done for basic edits.

So, here’s what you do. First, find the photo you want to work on. Once you’ve got it, look for the “Edit” option up top. It’s represented by a cool pen icon. Click on that bad boy!

15 Google Photos Hacks for Photo Enthusiasts

Hey there! When you’re working on editing your photos, you’ll find all the tools you need on the right side of the screen. From there, you can explore a whole bunch of cool filters and adjust the brightness and colors to make your photos really pop. You can also crop your images, rotate them, and even change their aspect ratio. It’s all right there, ready for you to explore and get creative with!

15 Google Photos Hacks for Photo Enthusiasts

If you’re not sure which options to choose, you can simply use the “Auto” option to let Google Photos automatically fix your photo. It will apply the best filters and position the photo in the way it thinks is best. I must say, the results are usually quite pleasing.

Keep in mind that the edits will be applied to the original photo, but you also have the option to create a copy or undo the edits whenever you want.

Now, let’s talk about enabling unlimited storage. You may already know that Google Photos offers unlimited storage for your photos and videos. However, there’s a catch. In order to be eligible for the unlimited storage, your photos must be compressed to 16 megapixels and your videos must have a resolution of 1080p. So, if you’re okay with some compression, you can enjoy the benefits of unlimited storage.

Let me tell you, this resolution is totally adequate for people like us who use fancy smartphones or regular cameras to take pictures or videos. But hey, it only becomes an issue if you’re a pro photographer who insists on keeping your high-res photos just as they are.

Now, here’s the thing: this option isn’t turned on automatically. You gotta take matters into your own hands by giving that cute little hamburger menu on the top left corner a click. Once it pops up, go ahead and choose “Settings.”

15 Google Photos Hacks for Photo Enthusiasts

Hey there! Let me walk you through a quick and easy way to compress your photos and videos so they won’t take up too much space on your Google Drive. Here’s what you need to do:

First, go ahead and select the “High quality” option at the top. Trust me, this is the way to go if you want to save some storage space.

Once you’ve done that, all the photos and videos you’ve added recently will automatically get compressed. It’s magic! And the best part is, they won’t count towards your Google Drive storage limit. How awesome is that?

So go ahead, give it a try! You’ll be amazed at how much space you can save just by using this simple trick.

15 Google Photos Hacks for Photo Enthusiasts

3. Reclaiming Storage Space in an Instant

If you’re running low on the maximum storage limit for Google Photos, don’t fret! You can quickly free up space by compressing any photos and videos that haven’t been compressed yet. Here’s how:

First, go to the “Settings” menu, which you can find at the top left corner of your screen. It looks like three horizontal lines stacked together, sort of like a hamburger. Once you’re in the Settings menu, look for an option called “Recover Storage” and click on it.

15 Google Photos Hacks for Photo Enthusiasts

When you click on the button labeled “Compress,” a dialog box will appear. It will show you the amount of storage that can be saved by compressing your photos and videos. This compression will apply to all photos and videos that have not already been compressed, including those in other Google services like Google+ and Blogger (except for Google Drive). So go ahead and click that button to get started!

15 Google Photos Hacks for Photo Enthusiasts

When you enable the unlimited high quality photo/video storage option (see tip #2), don’t forget to use the “Recover Storage” feature. This will only compress newer photos/videos, while older ones will remain in their original resolution and won’t count towards your unlimited storage unless you compress them yourself.

4. Clearing space on your smartphone

If you’re running low on storage on your phone, the Google Photos smartphone app has a handy feature that allows you to delete all the photos and videos that have already been safely backed up to your Google Photos account.

When you’re using the smartphone app, just tap the hamburger menu in the top left corner, and then select the “Free up device storage” option. Google Photos will do the hard work for you, finding all of your backed up photos and videos and letting you know how many you can delete. Just tap the “Remove” button, and poof! Those items are gone.

15 Google Photos Hacks for Photo Enthusiasts

5. Show off your pictures and videos

With Google Photos, you can easily share your favorite photos, videos, and albums with your friends or on social media. Just open up the picture, video, or album you want to share and click on the “Share” button at the top.

15 Google Photos Hacks for Photo Enthusiasts

When you want to share something, you’ll see a list of options and some contacts that you might want to share with. You can choose to share it through email, add it to an album, or share it on popular social media sites like Google+, Facebook, or Twitter.

You also have the option to get a link that you can share anywhere you like. If you share the content using this link, it will open in Google Photos.

15 Google Photos Hacks for Photo Enthusiasts

Step 6: Protecting Your Privacy When Sharing Content

When you share a photo or video, it not only shares the image itself but also includes something called Exif data. This Exif data contains information about the exact location where the photo or video was taken. This means that anyone who has access to the shared content can easily track your whereabouts.

But don’t worry! You can take steps to remove this location data and protect your privacy. All you need to do is follow these simple instructions:

  1. Open your Google Photos app and go to “Settings.”
  2. Look for the option that says “Remove geolocation in items shared by link,” and make sure it is enabled.

That’s it! Now, whenever you share any content using a sharable link, the location data will be automatically removed. However, please keep in mind that if you choose to share the content through other methods like social media or email, the location data may still be visible to others. So, it’s always a good idea to double-check your sharing options to ensure your privacy is protected.

15 Google Photos Hacks for Photo Enthusiasts

7. Discover the Magic of Google Photos Smart Search

When I discovered the power of Google Photos Search, my mind was blown. I couldn’t believe how incredible and downright astonishing it was. Seriously, it’s mind-boggling.

See, Google Photos Search goes beyond your wildest expectations. It has this uncanny ability to find the exact photos you’re looking for, even if you only give it the tiniest clue. It’s like it can read your mind or something.

Imagine this: you can search your photos by date and time. Want to see those pictures from last summer vacation? No problem! Just enter the date range, and Google Photos will pull them up faster than you can say “cheese!”

But wait, it gets even better. Google Photos Search can find photos based on the objects it detects. Yes, you heard me right. If you’re looking for a photo of your cat, simply type in “cat,” and voila! There’s fluffy Mr. Whiskers, right there on your screen.

It doesn’t stop there. Google Photos Search can even search by color. That’s right, color! If you’re in the mood for some vibrant red photos, just search for “red,” and you’ll be amazed at what pops up.

And get this: it can recognize people too! So, if you want to find that picture of your best friend, just type in their name, and boom! There they are, smiling back at you.

But here’s the thing, it doesn’t matter what hint you give Google Photos Search. It will find what you’re looking for, no matter how crazy or specific. It’s like having a mind-bending, time-traveling, object-identifying, color-recognizing, person-finding superpower right at your fingertips.

I don’t know about you, but I find that a little bit creepy. A little bit too good to be true. Like, how does it even work?

But hey, I can’t deny the magic of Google Photos Search. It’s like having my own personal photo assistant, ready to pull up exactly what I’m looking for with just a few taps on my keyboard.

So go ahead, give it a whirl. Say goodbye to endless scrolling and hello to the wonders of Google Photos Search. Prepare to be amazed, my friend.

When you want to find something on this website, just click on the search bar at the top. There, you’ll find different options that are designed to help you find what you need quickly. You can choose from categories like locations, videos, selfies, people, and animations. If those options aren’t enough, you can also enter specific keywords into the search bar to narrow down your search even further.

15 Google Photos Hacks for Photo Enthusiasts

When you’re searching for something, the keyword is really important. It helps you find the specific content you’re looking for. Let’s say you want to find photos from your son’s last birthday party. Just type in “birthday party” as your keyword. Or maybe you remember there was a tree in the background of one of the photos. In that case, entering “tree” as your keyword will help you locate it. And if you remember there was red color in the picture, simply enter “red” to see all the photos with red in them. You can even use emojis to search for content! For example, if you enter a smile emoji “:)”, it will show you all the photos with people smiling.

15 Google Photos Hacks for Photo Enthusiasts

The possibilities are limitless, you just have to think of something you want to find in a picture and trust Google photos to locate it. I mean, seriously, it even found the lasagna in the background of my selfie!

8. Add Private Labels to identify people

While Google Photos search is clever enough to recognize babies, men, and women in pictures, it can’t determine who specifically is in a photo. That’s where you come in. By telling Google Photos whose face is in a picture, it will organize all the photos of that person in one convenient location.

When you want to find people to tag, just tap on the search bar and Google Photos will display pictures of all the people it recognizes in your photos. Simply tap on the person’s face that you want to tag, and then select “Who’s this?” on the next page.

15 Google Photos Hacks for Photo Enthusiasts 15 Google Photos Hacks for Photo Enthusiasts

Hey there! Can you do me a favor? Tell me the name of the person, and Google Photos will magically organize all of their photos for you. It’s pretty cool, right?

15 Google Photos Hacks for Photo Enthusiasts

9. My Helpful Assistant: Google Photos

Hey there! Did you know that Google Photos has a super smart assistant? It’s like having a personal assistant that can automatically do cool things with your photos! Let me tell you about it.

This awesome assistant can do all sorts of amazing stuff with your photos. It can create collages, albums, panorama photos, animations, and even movies! And the best part? It only chooses photos that have something in common, so everything it creates is meaningful and special.

Now, here’s how you can make sure you don’t miss out on all the fun. Just go to the “Settings” in Google Photos and make sure the “Assistant cards” option is turned on. That way, you’ll never miss any of the fantastic things this smart assistant can do for you.

So, why not give it a try? Let the Google Photos assistant surprise you with its magical creations!

15 Google Photos Hacks for Photo Enthusiasts

Alright, let’s head over to the “Assistant” tab in Google Photos. It’s located on the left side of the interface. Once you’re there, you’ll find a bunch of awesome cards waiting for you. If you come across something you really like, just click on the “Save to Library” button below it. This will add it to your very own Photos library.

15 Google Photos Hacks for Photo Enthusiasts

10. Importing Google Drive photos and videos to Google Photos

When you upload photos and videos to Google Drive using the Google Drive uploader, they won’t automatically show up in Google Photos. But don’t worry, you can easily change this setting by following these steps:

  1. Open the Google Photos app on your device.
  2. Tap on the three horizontal lines at the top left corner to open the menu.
  3. Select “Settings” from the menu.
  4. In the settings, look for the option called “Google Drive”.
  5. Toggle the switch to enable the syncing of photos and videos from Google Drive to Google Photos.

That’s it! Now all the photos and videos you upload to Google Drive will also appear in Google Photos, making it easier for you to access and organize your media files.

15 Google Photos Hacks for Photo Enthusiasts

Hey there! Just wanted to let you know that from now on, when you save your photos and videos in Google Drive, they’ll show up in Google Photos too. But don’t worry, this doesn’t mean they’ll be moved from Google Drive. They’ll still be stored there and won’t be compressed to save space like they would in Google Photos.

11. How to Upload on Desktop

The Google Photos app for your phone is great for automatically uploading and syncing your photos and videos. But when it comes to the desktop, you have to upload them manually using the upload button on the Google Photos website. While there isn’t a fancy desktop app for Google Photos, they do offer a basic uploader that can automatically upload your photos and videos.

Hey there! Wanna know how to easily sync and recover your precious photos and videos? I’ve got you covered! Just download the Desktop Uploader, and it’ll take care of syncing all those amazing memories stored on your PC. What’s cool is that it even gives you the option to upload photos and videos from external storage devices like SD cards or camera storage when you connect them to your PC. So, if you’re someone who loves using their camera, this app is a must-have!

12. Get back deleted photos & videos

Oops! Accidentally deleted a photo or video? Don’t worry, Google Photos has got your back. You can easily recover recently deleted photos and videos by using the handy “Trash” option. When you delete something, Google Photos moves it to the “Trash” and keeps it there for a whole 60 days before deleting it permanently. So, if you change your mind or realize you made a mistake, just hop on over to the “Trash” and recover your precious memories with a few simple clicks. Easy-peasy!

If you’re not sure how to find the trash, don’t worry, I’ve got you covered. Just look for the little hamburger menu in the top left corner of your screen. It’s those three lines that sort of look like a stack of pancakes. Click on that, and a menu will pop up. From there, you’ll want to select “Trash.” It should be listed there, so go ahead and click on it. It’s as simple as that!

15 Google Photos Hacks for Photo Enthusiasts

When you delete a photo, you have the chance to get it back. Just go to the trash and pick the photos you want to bring back. Then, click on the “Restore” button at the top right corner to recover them.

15 Google Photos Hacks for Photo Enthusiasts

13. Time Travel with Google Photos

Hey there! Did you know that Google Photos has a super cool feature that lets you travel through time? It’s true! Right next to your regular browser scroll bar, there’s a special scroll bar just for moving between photos over time.

Instead of endlessly scrolling with the regular browser scroll bar, you can use this handy Google Photos scroll bar to quickly jump to photos from a specific time. All you have to do is move your mouse cursor to the right side of the screen, and boom! The scroll bar magically appears.

Once the scroll bar is visible, you’ll see years and months listed. You can easily scroll up or down to find the exact time period you’re looking for. It’s like having your very own time machine!

15 Google Photos Hacks for Photo Enthusiasts

Note: When I talk about the time period in Google Photos, I’m referring to the time when the photos were actually taken, not when they were added to your Google Photos library.

Step 14: How to back up and sync photos & videos

Here’s how Google Photos works on smartphones: It automatically backs up any photos and videos that you take with your phone’s camera. These are the photos that are stored in your camera roll.

But did you know that you can also tell Google Photos to back up photos and videos from other folders on your phone? That’s right! You can choose to back up media content from folders created by other apps, like WhatsApp, Messenger, Instagram, or even a photo editing app. And don’t forget about the screenshots folder!

By backing up these extra folders, you’ll have all your important memories in one place, ready to be accessed whenever and wherever you want.

So, to recap: Google Photos can not only back up your camera roll but also other folders on your phone where you have stored precious photos and videos. Isn’t that amazing? Now you can keep all your memories safe and sound, all in one convenient location. Go ahead and start backing up those memories today!

To make it happen, just follow these steps:

1. Open the main menu in the Google Photos app on your smartphone.

2. Look for the option called “Device folders” and tap on it.

3. You will see a list of all the folders on your device.

4. Next to each folder, you’ll notice a button labeled “Cloud”.

5. Tap on the “Cloud” button for each folder that you want to back up and sync.

6. The button will turn blue, indicating that syncing is now enabled for that folder.

7. From now on, any new photos or videos you add to that folder will automatically upload to Google Photos.

That’s it! With just a few simple taps, you can ensure that all your important memories are safely backed up in the cloud.

15 Google Photos Hacks for Photo Enthusiasts

Step 15: Get all the photos and videos

Did you know that you can easily download all your photos and videos from your Google Photos account? It’s true! But it can be a bit of a hassle. Lucky for you, I’ve got a solution. It’s called Google Takeout.

Google Takeout is a service that lets you download all the stuff you have stored in Google services, including Google Photos. Here’s how you do it: just go to the Google Takeout website and click on the “Select none” button. This will make sure that you don’t accidentally download anything you don’t want.

15 Google Photos Hacks for Photo Enthusiasts

Alright, let’s get started. Scroll down and find “Google Photos” in the list. When you see it, click on it. Now, go all the way to the bottom of the page and click on the “Create archive” button. This will start the process of creating an archive. Once the archive is ready, Google will send you an email to your Gmail account with a link to download all your data.

15 Google Photos Hacks for Photo Enthusiasts 15 Google Photos Hacks for Photo Enthusiasts

In a nutshell

These nifty Google Photos tips and tricks will help you make the most of this handy tool. If you’re using the 15GB of free space provided by Google Drive to store your content on Google Photos, you should definitely activate the unlimited storage feature. Otherwise, your photos and videos will quickly fill up all the space and prevent you from using other Google services like Gmail. Also, don’t forget to explore the search feature on Google Photos – you’ll be amazed by how accurate it is!

Know any other awesome tips and tricks to enhance your Google Photos experience? Share them with us in the comments below.