Google Photos to end free unlimited storage on June 1, 2021

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Photos and videos uploaded to Google Photos in high quality will begin counting toward users' 15GB of Google Account storage next June.

Google Photos to end free unlimited storage on June 1, 2021


When Google Photos launched in 2015, the tech giant had originally offered users the ability to upload an unlimited amount of photos at "high quality." The company has announced that starting on June 1st in 2021, photos will once again count toward your overall Google Account storage limit of 15GB.

Google tweeted out the change from the official Google Photos Twitter account on Wednesday.

Starting June 1, 2021, new photos and videos uploaded in High quality will begin counting towards your 15GB of Google Account storage.

Learn more here: https://t.co/SuS34HFjAu

-- Google Photos (@googlephotos)


Google claims that the reason for the change is to provide users with a higher quality experience and plans to further develop Google Photos in the future.

Only photos uploaded after June 1, 2021, will count toward the 15GB limit that comes with every Google Account or toward the additional storage that has been purchased via Google One. The company points out that Google Account storage is shared across Google Drive, Gmail, and Google Photos, meaning that your new photos will compete for space with email attachments and any documents you've stored in Google Drive.

Pixel users are the only ones who will not need to worry about the change. All high-quality videos and photos will continue to be exempt from the change after June 1, 2021.

Google is offering users a personalized estimate that may explain how long the storage will last, stating that it takes into account how often users back up photos and video content.

Google Photos


In June 2021, Google will release a new tool in the Photos app that will allow users to manage photos and videos. The tool will analyze a user's videos and photos and suggest deleting anything that appears to be too low quality.

Google suggests that users who need more space could consider purchasing extra storage through Google One, where plans start at $1.99 per month for 100 gigabytes of storage.

Those with an Apple ID may want to consider backing up their images through iCloud. For $0.99 a month, users can get 50GB of storage that syncs across all Apple devices. For $2.99 a month, users can get 200GB of storage. For those who have a truly massive amount to back up, a $9.99 per month tier offers 2TB of storage.

Apple One subscribers can expand their limit even further by purchasing the Apple One Premier plan and an additional 2TB of storage, which costs $34.94 per month, includes 4TB of storage and comes bundled with Apple Music Family, Apple TV+, Apple Arcade, Apple News+, and Apple Fitness+.
brauntj
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 21
    “Apple One subscribers can expand their limit even further by purchasing the Apple One Premier plan and an additional 2TB of storage, which costs $34.94 per month, includes 4TB of storage”

    I have the One Premier plan for $29.95, and adding 2 TB of storage for 4 TB total adds 9.99. How do you get the extra 2 TB for only $5 per month?
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 2 of 21
    cpsrocpsro Posts: 2,893member
    Google Photos isn’t free. The company retains a perpetual, worldwide, royalty-free right-to-use your pics for any money-making purpose the company chooses, even after you delete your photos and account.
    edited November 2020 dysamoriarazorpitDogpersonBeatschasmwatto_cobra
  • Reply 3 of 21
    Don't cry because it's going away. Smile because we've had it for this long. And crowdsourced their innovation in ML/AI and loose definition of ownership. Haha. Seriously though, I use it as a simple backup and this will drive me to iCloud storage and make an even more convincing argument for some Apple One tier.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 4 of 21
    I've had the 2TB iCloud storage from when it was first offered - with a boatload of Apple gear (4 studios), 10s of thousands of photos, videos & full soundtracks, I still have room to breathe. On top of that, and for added convenience, I have a paid subscription to Dropbox, PLUS…………(as if that wasn't enough) 1TB Adobe Cloud account! But as a creative professional (Commercial Artist and Soundtrack Composer) I'm the type who, after being on computers since the mid-80s, has up to 40TB of external backup drives on all of my Macs (and that's from the paranoia that comes from having lost only one file, a single commercial job - one that was finished and never needed reworking). Storage is really, relatively speaking, dirt-cheap. I compare a 10TB WD drive today at under $300. to my first 2MB external drive in the '80s at over $800., and the word "exponential" certainly describes the arc of technology. 
    bageljoeydewmeBeatsphilboogieapplguymuthuk_vanalingamwatto_cobra
  • Reply 5 of 21
    Suckers. Now they have you. There are many reasons I don't use any of Google's 'free' services.
    edited November 2020 DAalsethDogpersonBeatszeus423iHyMacProwatto_cobra
  • Reply 6 of 21
    dysamoriadysamoria Posts: 3,430member
    Inevitable, innit? First hit is free, and all that... But perpetual increases in data storage is as unsustainable a thing as Wall Street’s bullshit perpetual growth delusion. We already are wasting land (and energy) on inefficient food production. At what point do we start competing with land for data centers? (And yes, another unsustainable delusion is the “right” to breed perpetually)

    I have no interest in subscribing to anything. I do ONE streaming service (Netflix, because they were the first & still have good content) on top of my bare-minimum life expenses. Not just because I can’t afford anything more. It’s also because I’m sick of this perpetual grab for more money whilst giving less in return. The “services model” is mostly Wall Street BS. Bait is why anything is ever offered with “free” tiers. The more space people think they need, the more likely they are to add yet another monthly debit from their income.

    I maintain my own storage and only use iCloud for cross-device necessities. I also moderate my data hoarding. No one needs 5 terabytes of snapshots. I keep what’s worth keeping and will be likely used/enjoyed later.

    Professional photographers might need that storage for huge raw files, but a good, self-owned archival system is better than relying on any cloud service which has zero guarantee or accountability.

    As for streaming services... We already went through this with cable television “premium channels” (another thing I won’t ever buy). Let me know when some company offers a “package deal” of all the disparate streaming services (all trying to all cram their fingers into the same pie), under “one convenient bill”...

    ...and I STILL won’t subscribe.

    i still need to get myself the hell out of gmail dependence. It’s hard to not get suckered into free shit and they did get me with that one. That’s my own personal learning lesson.
    flyingdpOfer
  • Reply 7 of 21
    chasmchasm Posts: 2,391member
    Translation: we think we have extracted all the sellable/profileable information (and rights to your photos/videos) we can usefully get about you."
    edited November 2020 OferDogpersonzeus423skippingrockwatto_cobra
  • Reply 8 of 21
    maestro64maestro64 Posts: 5,005member
    cpsro said:
    Google Photos isn’t free. The company retains a perpetual, worldwide, royalty-free right-to-use your pics for any money-making purpose the company chooses, even after you delete your photos and account.
    and after they used all your photo to develop their photo recognition algorithms they are going to charge you for the privilege to use your stuff free of charge. People are just stupid or better yet the A fool and his money are soon parted.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 9 of 21
    cpsro said:
    Google Photos isn’t free. The company retains a perpetual, worldwide, royalty-free right-to-use your pics for any money-making purpose the company chooses, even after you delete your photos and account.
    Inevitably whenever the subject of Photos comes up, someone posts this misinterpreted view of a bog standard Creative Commons software license.  Not really sure how this is still misunderstood by so many (yes, I'm generalizing, but you're not the first to post this. sadly you won't be the last either).  This license is common boilerplate for any company that interacts with customer data.   Yes, Apple has the same license in their ToS... as does FB, MS, Yahoo, Twitter, etc.  I could go on for a long time, but you get the point.  Any number of combinations of the search terms "royalty free" + "worldwide" + "license" + "terms of service" + Company X, will net you a Creative Commons license notification from that company.

    tl;dr That license doesn't mean what you think it means.


    philboogieapplguymuthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 10 of 21
    dewmedewme Posts: 3,823member
    I've had the 2TB iCloud storage from when it was first offered - with a boatload of Apple gear (4 studios), 10s of thousands of photos, videos & full soundtracks, I still have room to breathe. On top of that, and for added convenience, I have a paid subscription to Dropbox, PLUS…………(as if that wasn't enough) 1TB Adobe Cloud account! But as a creative professional (Commercial Artist and Soundtrack Composer) I'm the type who, after being on computers since the mid-80s, has up to 40TB of external backup drives on all of my Macs (and that's from the paranoia that comes from having lost only one file, a single commercial job - one that was finished and never needed reworking). Storage is really, relatively speaking, dirt-cheap. I compare a 10TB WD drive today at under $300. to my first 2MB external drive in the '80s at over $800., and the word "exponential" certainly describes the arc of technology. 
    I'm curious if you've looked into or are actively using cloud backup solutions like iDrive, Carbonite, BackBlaze, etc., as an added layer of protection? I'm toying with the idea of beefing up my backup strategy with something explicitly designed for backup as opposed to online storage, i.e., iCloud, Dropbox. I know some of these solutions can be placed on the other side of an onsite NAS server based backup solution so it pushes all your NAS server backups up to the cloud so you always have an offsite backup. None of these services are "cheap" but I'd imagine the potential impact of loss is significantly higher than the yearly subscription fee.

    Regarding hard disks, I think the first hard disk I owned would hold about 3 MP3 files, as long as the bitrates weren't too high. A music library consisting of 3 songs - woo hoo! Put it on shuffle and enjoy ...
    edited November 2020 watto_cobra
  • Reply 11 of 21
    cpsrocpsro Posts: 2,893member
    cpsro said:
    Google Photos isn’t free. The company retains a perpetual, worldwide, royalty-free right-to-use your pics for any money-making purpose the company chooses, even after you delete your photos and account.
    Inevitably whenever the subject of Photos comes up, someone posts this misinterpreted view of a bog standard Creative Commons software license.  Not really sure how this is still misunderstood by so many (yes, I'm generalizing, but you're not the first to post this. sadly you won't be the last either).  This license is common boilerplate for any company that interacts with customer data.   Yes, Apple has the same license in their ToS... as does FB, MS, Yahoo, Twitter, etc.  I could go on for a long time, but you get the point.  Any number of combinations of the search terms "royalty free" + "worldwide" + "license" + "terms of service" + Company X, will net you a Creative Commons license notification from that company.

    tl;dr That license doesn't mean what you think it means.


    You are so wrong. Clearly you’ve not read the license and understood it. No surprise. Google has carefully crafted a custom license that is difficult to interpret, but what I describe succinctly is correct... and the perpetual, worldwide, royalty-free right to use is granted to Google alone. Google attempts to assuage users’ fears by stating users retain ownership of their pics, which is correct, but they are glossing over the sweeping rights granted to Google merely by using their ‘free’ service.

    By the way, Apple’s service licenses are far more clearly worded (last I checked!) and clearly state that data are only mined for the purpose of serving the user/customer. And if the user deletes their data, the data are in fact deleted.
    edited November 2020 razorpitDogpersonphilboogiewatto_cobra
  • Reply 12 of 21
    cpsrocpsro Posts: 2,893member
    maestro64 said:
    cpsro said:
    Google Photos isn’t free. The company retains a perpetual, worldwide, royalty-free right-to-use your pics for any money-making purpose the company chooses, even after you delete your photos and account.
    and after they used all your photo to develop their photo recognition algorithms they are going to charge you for the privilege to use your stuff free of charge. People are just stupid or better yet the A fool and his money are soon parted.
    You got it. Storage is so dirt cheap, the company can afford to maintain photos (and other tracked data) long after the user deletes their account.
    Data mining technology improves exponentially with time. What users may think unrealistic to be able to glean from photos today will be essentially trivial and cheap to accomplish in a few years.
    razorpitwatto_cobra
  • Reply 13 of 21
    cpsro said:
    cpsro said:
    Google Photos isn’t free. The company retains a perpetual, worldwide, royalty-free right-to-use your pics for any money-making purpose the company chooses, even after you delete your photos and account.
    Inevitably whenever the subject of Photos comes up, someone posts this misinterpreted view of a bog standard Creative Commons software license.  Not really sure how this is still misunderstood by so many (yes, I'm generalizing, but you're not the first to post this. sadly you won't be the last either).  This license is common boilerplate for any company that interacts with customer data.   Yes, Apple has the same license in their ToS... as does FB, MS, Yahoo, Twitter, etc.  I could go on for a long time, but you get the point.  Any number of combinations of the search terms "royalty free" + "worldwide" + "license" + "terms of service" + Company X, will net you a Creative Commons license notification from that company.

    tl;dr That license doesn't mean what you think it means.


    You are so wrong. Clearly you’ve not read the license and understood it. No surprise. Google has carefully crafted a custom license that is difficult to interpret, but what I describe succinctly is correct... and the perpetual, worldwide, royalty-free right to use is granted to Google alone. Google attempts to assuage users by stating users retain ownership of their pics, which is correct, but they are glossing over the sweeping rights granted to Google merely by using their ‘free’ service.
    Okay, here's Apple: https://www.apple.com/legal/internet-services/itunes/us/terms.html
    Relevant excerpt:  Our Services may allow you to submit or post materials such as comments, ratings and reviews, pictures, videos, and podcasts (including associated metadata and artwork)... You hereby grant Apple a worldwide, royalty-free, perpetual, nonexclusive license to use the materials you submit within the Services and related marketing, and Apple internal purposes. Apple may monitor and decide to remove or edit any submitted material.  
    edit: And no, Apple does not  state if a user deletes their data, it is in fact deleted as you claim in your edit.  

    Here's FB: https://www.facebook.com/legal/terms/previous
    Relevant excerpt: For content that is covered by intellectual property rights, like photos and videos (IP content), you specifically give us the following permission, subject to your privacy and application settings: you grant us a non-exclusive, transferable, sub-licensable, royalty-free, worldwide license to use any IP content that you post on or in connection with Facebook (IP License). 

    Here's MS: https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/legal/intellectualproperty/copyright/default#o10
    Relevant excerpt: However, by posting, uploading, inputting, providing or submitting ("Posting") your Submission you are granting Microsoft, its affiliated companies and necessary sublicensees permission to use your Submission in connection with the operation of their Internet businesses (including, without limitation, all Microsoft Services), including, without limitation, the license rights to: copy, distribute, transmit, publicly display, publicly perform, reproduce, edit, translate and reformat your Submission; to publish your name in connection with your Submission; and the right to sublicense such rights to any supplier of the Services.

    Here's Google: https://tools.google.com/dlpage/res/webmmf/en/eula.html
    Relevant excerpt: You retain copyright and any other rights you already hold in Content which you submit, post or display on or through, the Services. By submitting, posting or displaying the content you give Google a perpetual, irrevocable, worldwide, royalty-free, and non-exclusive license to reproduce, adapt, modify, translate, publish, publicly perform, publicly display and distribute any Content which you submit, post or display on or through, the Services. This license is for the sole purpose of enabling Google to display, distribute and promote the Services and may be revoked for certain Services as defined in the Additional Terms of those Services.

    Here's the much longer more detailed version of Google's ToS detailing this topic.  https://policies.google.com/terms

    Like I said, they all use a boilerplate Creative Commons license.  I've sourced my claims.  I doubt you can source yours.  
    edited November 2020 russwphilboogiemuthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 14 of 21
    BeatsBeats Posts: 2,531member
    "Free unlimited storage for a limited time"

    A phrase I used on my Youtube channel describing this sh** service.
    chasmwatto_cobra
  • Reply 15 of 21
    chasmchasm Posts: 2,391member
    This is going to piss off a lot of (admittedly naive) people, but more for how tricky it is for normal humans to then move their photos onto another data-mining free service ...
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 16 of 21
    For important backups, I have external backup SSD's that I leave locked up at work. It's nice to have a copy here, but I also want something off-site in a worst-case scenario.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 17 of 21
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 23,171member
    cpsro said:
    Google Photos isn’t free. The company retains a perpetual, worldwide, royalty-free right-to-use your pics for any money-making purpose the company chooses, even after you delete your photos and account.
    BS. No private user photo has ever been taken by Google for themselves. You obviously misconstrue the TOS.
  • Reply 18 of 21
    MacProMacPro Posts: 19,382member
    A Google product being dropped ... what a shock!
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 19 of 21
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 23,171member
    MacPro said:
    A Google product being dropped ... what a shock!
    LOL, I agree, but in this case it's not being dropped. After June of this next year it will be limited to 15GB of free photo storage rather than unlimited. Personally I find the Google One 2TB plan very attractive, with little bonus perks offered to subscribers throughout the year which makes it even nicer. 
    edited November 2020
  • Reply 20 of 21
    maestro64maestro64 Posts: 5,005member
    gatorguy said:
    cpsro said:
    Google Photos isn’t free. The company retains a perpetual, worldwide, royalty-free right-to-use your pics for any money-making purpose the company chooses, even after you delete your photos and account.
    BS. No private user photo has ever been taken by Google for themselves. You obviously misconstrue the TOS.
    You make that statement like you work at Google and know for a fact they have not used users photos.

    explain how Google developed, Google Lens to identify objects in photos, do you think google had employees running around taking millions of photos and only using them.

    My understand this came from the Captchas project and founders of this company when bought by Google said they used the 100's millions of photos google stored on their servers to improve the image recognition software. Based on founders own statements over the years I think we can agree they were using users photos. I do not think they ever paid a user for the use of their photos or the work users provided to identify objects. Yes, I am aware they also use photo from street view, so it was not 100% user photos.

    BTW, do you think all those photos in this Captchas were generated by Google employees or google paid for the use of them. This is what google meant by perpetual worldwide royalty-free licensing when you post images to their servers.


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