Protect your photo collection with Google Photos [50 Essential iOS Apps #21]

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Google Photos library backup on iPhone X
Google Photos is the photo and video backup app we all wish Apple would give us.
Photo: Ian Fuchs/Cult of Mac

50 Essential iOS Apps: Google Photos Photos and videos are some of our most important mementos, helping us recount our fondest memories. The thought of losing those keepsakes shouldn’t be something that keeps you up at night.

With Google Photos, every photo and video on your iOS device can be safely backed up to the cloud, accessible even if your iPhone or iPad goes up in flames. Even better, Google Photos can help you free up space on your iOS device, so there’s always room to take more pictures.

What is Google Photos?

Google Photos is a cloud backup service, designed to store your photos and video within your Google account. Since it offers automatic backup of your iPhone photos or videos, you never need to worry about losing those precious memories. By default, the service compresses images to save space. Photos larger than 16MP are reduced to 16MP and videos larger than 1080p are resized to 1080p.

Why Google Photos is great

As a trade-off for the compressed images and resized video, Google offers unlimited photo and video storage. Unlike iCloud Photo Library, there is no need to pay for additional storage to keep your images backed up.

Another great feature of Google Photos is the ability to free up space on your iPhone by removing local copies of your photos or video. While this option isn’t for everyone, it is great for smaller-storage devices (like 16GB or 32GB iPhones).

Google Photos search, album, and edits
Google’s AI and machine learning provide useful search, automatic album creation, and auto-stylized images in Google Photos.
Screenshots: Ian Fuchs/Cult of Mac

Google Photos also leverages Google’s incredible machine learning and AI to offer impressive face matching. Once you’ve trained Google on important faces in your library, it will automatically and intelligently group those faces. It can even automatically suggest sharing photos or creating albums.

Search within Google Photos is incredibly useful as well. Whether it’s a location, a time, a person or an object, Google Photos can identify images matching your search with impressive accuracy. This makes finding that one specific photo or meme — the one you know is somewhere in there — quick and easy.

Who the Google Photos app is for

Google Photos is an incredibly useful photo-backup service that any iPhone owner could take advantage of. Owners of smaller-capacity devices will find it extra-useful. Free, unlimited backup, and the ability to free up space on your iPhone (by removing local photos that are backed up), make it essential for managing storage space and preserving your photos.

Bottom line: Google Photos is the best photo backup app

Say what you will about Google, but it’s hard to argue with services and apps that offer the value of Google Photos. From unlimited photo backup to assistant-created edits, videos, collages and memories, Google Photos is an incredible backup solution.

Price: Free

Download from:App Store

See more of our 50 Essential iOS Apps

Want more essential iOS app reviews? Check out our ongoing series, 50 Essential iOS Apps.