Google photos for Android is one of those most downloaded Google apps which comes pre-installed in almost all of the Android smartphones.
Even though the app has billions of active users and a ton of photos get uploaded to the app on a daily basis, thanks to its free unlimited storage option to backup your photos in high quality, a lot of Google Photos users does not make the most use of the app.
This might be because most people consider Google Photos as just another Android gallery app and fail to notice the myriad of features it offers and ends up using it as an app to only view and backup their photos.
So, to all of those users who do not realize the full potential of the Google Photos app for Android, here are 10 Google Photos tricks to make the most use of the Android’s best gallery app.
10 Google Photos tricks
Add multiple Gmail accounts to the Google Photos app
While Google Photos offers free unlimited storage for your photos, there is a catch in that as in they would not be backed up in their original quality and would be compressed to some extent thus reducing the quality of your images.
If you are not willing to compromise on the quality of your images, you can choose the option to backup your photos in the original quality, but the downside to doing this is that you would only be getting 15 GB of free storage, after which you would have to opt-in on a paid monthly Google Photos storage plan based on your needs.
So, if you want to use the original quality backup option and also don’t want to pay once you use up your 15 GB limit, what you can do is that create a new Gmail account or add an existing one to the Google Photos app and use it to backup your photos once the storage limit of 15 GB runs out on your primary account.
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As there is no limit for creating Gmail accounts, you can technically get unlimited free storage space to backup your photos to Google Photos in their original quality and without any compression by using this trick.
To add an existing or a new account to the Google Photos app on your Android device, just open the hamburger menu from the left of the app and then click on the downward facing arrow next to your username. Now select the Add account option to proceed.
Select or deselect folders to backup
Google Photos app Android do not backup all the folders in your device by default. So, if you want all of your photos and videos, including those you receive from others in Whatsapp, Facebook Messenger, Snapchat or any other social media app or the ones you download to your device to be backed up to your Google Photos account, then you should manually enable Google Photos to backup the photos and videos from these folders.
Thankfully Google Photos is smart enough to recognize and display all the folders in your device that might contain any media files. So, all you have to do is open the Google Photos app on your Android device and then click on the Device folders option from the left hamburger menu.
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From there, just open the folders you want to be backed up to your Google Photos account and enable the Backup & Sync option at the top right corner. If you don’t want a particular folder to be backed up just leave it as is, or disable it if its already enabled.
By this trick, you can not only save a lot of storage space on your Google Photos account, but could also avoid backing up unnecessary photos and videos thus saving your bandwidth as well if you do not have an unlimited plan.
Create auto albums to automatically add photos of particular people or pets
This is my favourite feature of Google Photos and it was just most recently introduced to the app. Previously if you wanted to create an album of someone, say your mother containing all the photos of her, you would have to manually select her photos and add them to an album.
However, with the new Auto albums feature in Google Photos, Google will automatically add your photos to the albums whenever they are uploaded to your account. You can select whose photos you want to be added to the album and Google will take care of the rest. There are also options to add multiple people to an Album and even add pictures of your pets.
For the auto albums feature to work, you have to first mark the photos of people in your Google photos with names. You can do this by clicking on the People & Pets tab under the Albums section and mark the photos of people with appropriate names. Google will automatically identify and group similar faces together for you.
Once you have added the names to the people and pets photos in your Google Photos account, now you can create a new Auto album by going to the Albums section in the app and then selecting the ‘New Album’ option.
Now select the ‘Automatically add photos of people & pets’ option and proceed by selecting the names of the photos of people and pets you want to be added to your new Album.
After this just give a name to your Album and that is all, a few seconds later your new Auto Album will be ready with all the photos of people you have selected. The album will be updated automatically everytime when a photo of the people in the album gets added to your account.
You can also share the album to anyone you want and they would also be able to view the Album as and when it is updated.
Automatically share photos of people with them
If you are like me and are the only person in your friends circle with an awesome camera in your phone, then probably you also faced the situation where you have to take numerous pictures of all your friends whenever you hangout and then go through the trouble of sharing the pictures to everyone. Trust me, you are definitely going to love this trick.
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As you already know from the previous trick, Google Photos automatically groups similar faces in uploaded photos together and you can assign names to these group of photos after the respective people behind them.
What you don’t know is, after a recent update to the app, you can now share this automatically created album which gets updated everytime when a photo of the person in the album gets uploaded to your account.
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So, all you have to do is just share the album of your friend to him/her and everytime when you take pictures of them, it will get automatically updated to the album after the upload process and they can just open the album to view their recent pictures without you having to manually share them.
Automatically fix brightness on your photos
This feature is actually there for quite a some time and if you hadn’t noticed if before, then you might find this really interesting.
First spotted around May of last year by Android Police, Google Photos automatically gives you the option to fix brightness on the photos in your account that are either too dark or have a really low exposure value.
A small button labelled ‘Fix Brightness’ would be presented at the bottom of the photos which Google’s machine learning algorithm thinks is not bright enough and once you tap on the button, an automatic fix would be applied to the image making it more clearly visible.
You can either save the automatic fix or discard it to proceed manually editing the image with the brightness and exposure controls present in the built in editing menu of the Google Photos app or leave it as is if you don’t think that the image needs any fixing.
Archive or Hide your screenshots from the main page
We all take a lot of screenshots using our Android phone for different reasons and while they might not be required at all times, you might need them at some point. But that doesn’t mean you have to put up with all those screenshots among your actual pictures.
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Thankfully, Google Photos offers a simple solution, where the built in assistant in the app automatically recongnizes and organises all the screenshots uploaded to your account in a regular basis and even gives you the option to archive them so that your account doesn’t feel cluttered.
Create collage, videos or animations from your photos
Aside from being an awesome Gallery app, backup solution for your media files and a good photo editing tool, Google Photos can also be used for making collages or videos out of the photos uploaded to your account.
You can either click on the add icon at the top of the Google Photos app home screen or select the photos you want to add to your collage or your videos and then click on the add icon to create Collages or videos.
While you can add as many photos as you want for creating a video, the collage has a limit of 9 photos.
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There are also options to customize your video like choosing a background music, customizing the transition effects and also choosing the order and the time limit for each image.
Google photos also allows you to create short animations of GIFs from your similar looking images.
Google Photos also occasionally creates these automatically for you either when you upload a lot of pics at once or when it recognizes a lot of similar photos in your account.
Free up space on your internal storage with the help of Google Photos
The ‘Free up space’ option in the left hamburger menu of Google Photos will automatically allow you to delete all the photos and videos in the internal storage of your device that have already been backed up. Just select the option and let Google do the magic.
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Use Google Lens to copy text from images and to identify objects
With the new Google Lens feature, you can just click the Google Lens icon at the bottom of an image or a screenshot that has a lot of text in it and Google’s AI will automatically scan the image and recognize the text in the image thus allowing you to either copy them or directly do a Google search without leaving the page.
You can also use the Google Lens feature to identify any famous monument or location and sometimes even objects or products from your images. However, you do have to keep in mind that the feature is relatively new and it might not perfectly recognize texts from images every time you use it.
Restore deleted photos
Google Photos has a Recycle bin option similar to Windows called Bin and whenever you delete a photo or a video, it does not get permanently deleted for 60 days and you can restore it within that time if you change your mind you realize that you have accidentally deleted something.
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It is also good to empty your Bin with unnecessary images occasionally as it also counts towards your storage. You can view the deleted images by going to the bin folder from the left hamburger menu in the Google Photos app and then select the images you want to restore.
If you found any of the tricks in this post useful don’t forget to share this post with your friends. Feel free to let us know about any questions you have about the tricks in this post in the comments below. You can also add any Google Photos tricks you know to the comments section.