Google Engineer John Elstone on Tuesday announced several important updates to the Google Photos service, all of which have already started rolling out to Google Photos Web and Android app users.
Announced in a Google+ post, the update for Google Photos app is divided into two parts. The Google Photos for Android update brings the Free Up Space feature under Settings. Enabling it would ask users to bulk-delete those media files that have been already backed up on Google Photos from the device. “To prevent device copies from being accidentally deleted, we’re asking users to double-confirm their intent during the ‘Free Up Space’ flow,” added Elstone.
In addition, users who are backing up their photos in High Quality may also see an Assistant card pop up prompting them to back up photos. The card would appear only when users are about to hit their device storage limit. Until now, the feature was restricted to those users who backed up images in Original Quality. Google in a separate post said the Free Up Space feature would arrive “soon” for iOS.
The second part of the Google Photos app update applies for only SD-card enabled devices. The update would allow Google Photos to delete images from SD-cards as well. “This should prevent the issue of a photo continuing to show up in the Photos view despite being deleted, a frustrating experience for users,” said Elstone.
For the Web version, Google Photos users would now be able to compress the media uploaded in Original Quality to High Quality. Until now, users were not able to downgrade the quality and were only able to set in which quality their future images would back up. The option is named as Recover Storage and can be found under the settings option.
For those unaware, Google gives users option to create a backup of their images in two ways. In the High Quality option, the images are compressed in size but the downgrade quality does not harm the image in any way. Users get unlimited storage in the High Quality section. With the Original Quality option, the images are directly stored on Google Drive. However, here the images can be uploaded in their original resolution and quality. Users can always purchase extra storage from Google.