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How Google Photos Easily Improves Your Pics

Have you ever come back from an event, and wished your photos were together with your partner’s pics in one place?  Me too!  Now what if I told you the service was FREE ?  Google Photos has provided an elegant answer to our common problem.  The most recent version of Google Photos makes editing, sharing, and backup so simple that you don’t need to do anything. Polishing photos and organizing them is automatic! The traveler far from resources, the amateur looking to learn, or the veteran who wants to share, can all find a home with the new Google Photos.

  • GOOD

  • Easy to use
  • Share to Friends
  • Fast Photo Editing
  • Built in Recognition
  • Auto Edit & Backup
  • Hands Free
  • Cost = FREE
  • BAD

  • Free limits to 16mp/1080p
  • Not Lightroom quality
  • No folders!
  • Overall Impression

  • 16mp and 1080p are standard high res for most phones and cameras including DSLRs.
  • Unless you’re a Pro/Semi-Pro the free format will work for you
  • Offsite backup is critical.  (Theft/Fire)
  • Ability to upload to shared albums is amazing
  • Hands off is great!  Go to sleep, wake up,  and your photos are safely backed up. You’re presented with collages, mini movies, and auto upgraded images that look AMAZING!

What is it?

A Google Photos platform has been around, in one form or another, for many years.  Many of you remember Google Photos: Picasa. Picasa was an outstanding photo management software, but is no longer supported.  Truthfully, I still have Picasa, though I rarely use it. Picasa was effectively replaced with Google Plus, and currently exists as Google Photo Backup.

Google Photos has been steadily improving itself this whole time. Adding refined features, such as auto awesome and the Assistant, has really made the service shine.  Google Photo Assistant is basically a photoshop pro living in your pocket spending days and nights polishing your photos. The assistant even makes movies set to music, stitches panoramas from similar shots, and stylizes photos to make you look like a pro … when you didn’t lift a finger!

It seems that Google is closing in on the perfect photo management system. Google Photo Backup has definitely made my life much easier. Read more to see how Google Photos can manage your collection for you, and make your shots pop!

For Travelers

As  an adventurer on the road, why risk losing your photos?  You can keep them safe at all times without any effort.  Feel free to drop your phone into the ocean, your photos are fine!

No need to carry a heavy laptop, buy extra SD cards, or misplace flash drives.  I have mashed together many weird ways to backup my photos on the road, but none have ever been as easy as this!  Just connect to the hotel wifi, and go to bed.  That’s it!  You photos are safely backed up and stored in a place that they can never be lost.  What more could a traveler ask for?

Oh, right, you want to improve your photos too! This app can instantly tweak your pics to look amazing all by itself. You are always welcome to try the easy to use and powerful tools the app offers.  Google Photos will also present you with creations of its own.  I am often surprised at what it manages to make for me.

This is a photo of my wife and Bear at the fort in Alexandria, Egypt. I shot it using a Nikon D5300.

Look what I did with a single click of the “auto” button:

A few HDR, and other auto edited images Google Photos made for me!  I did absolutely nothing!

Dachau Concentration Camp – BW HDR
Munich Collage

Ready to give this FREE and powerful service a try?  GREAT!

First you’ll need to have a Google account.  I know that you probably already do, but for those few who still haven’t joined the party you can sign up here. Then head right back to Travel Gadget.  If you already have your account, you are about 90% finished.

The Apps and Service

Google Photos has 2 main parts, the mobile app and the web based service with Google Photo Backup.  You do not need the mobile app if you truly don’t want it, though it does come with some great benefits.  The web based service can store all (and I do mean all) of you photos for FREE!  You heard me…FREE!

READ: New WiFi USB Gadget Actually Saves Your Day  [REVEAL]

What’s the catch?

The catch is that if you want your storage to be FREE, you have to agree to resize your pics to 16mp and your video to 1080p.  Why is this a problem?  For most of us, it isn’t.   Stop and consider that most cameras, and just about all phones already max out at 16 mp anyway. 1080p is the HD resolution of your TV anyway!  I still keep a local copy of all my photos so this is fine for me, in fact, it’s PERFECT!

Once you start with Google Photos a few things will happen:

  1. All of your pictures will be safely backed up offsite. This means they are protected again computer failure, theft, fire, or other unforeseen damage.
  2. Your collection will be automatically sorted and searchable!  Type in ‘beach 2003’ and BOOM all of your pictures from various beaches in 2003 show up sorted by date! AMAZING.
  3. Google will offer edited versions of your pics.  You will start to see panoramic pic made from several related images you took, HDR, collages, and even custom movies set to music will start being delivered directly to you!
  4. You will have access to the built in Google Editor.  I have seen more powerful editors, but none so easy to use!

This commercial from Google makes it crystal clear:

The Mobile App

The app is gloriously simple to use.  There are a ton of features and options available that anyone can easily just pick up and use. Because we love adventurers, we are going to get you all set up and ready to hit the road.  Later we will cover the Google Photo Backup app for computers.

First, head over and grab your app:   iOS   Android (then get right back here!)

Got it? Good!  The app does something wonderful. Google Photos will let you sync your shots directly to your Google account.  You can make a shared album and add other people, say from a party, so that by the end of the day everyone has the pics in one place.

READ: iPad Mini Case Battle Otterbox vs Lifeproof

My wife and I simply share a Google account.  That’s it.  Nothing else is required! We have a shared Photos, Calendar, and Drive from basically everything. We snap out pictures, and they end up where we want them.  No extra work to be done … at all.


We set our phones to sync only over WiFi, and only when plugged in.  This is done partially to save battery life, but it also gives us a chance to organize or delete any bad shots before it syncs up.  Ongoing sync over data is GREAT if you’re at a pool party or other place where you might destroy your phone.  But most of the time, WiFi will do nicely.

Once we hit the road, we go out and tour a new city snapping happily away.  We come home, plug in our phones as we would anyway, and Google Photos takes care of the rest.  I wake up in the morning to backed up albums, instant collages, and even movies of my day set to music.  NO EFFORT REQUIRED!

Sounds good doesn’t it?

READ: New WiFi USB Gadget Actually Saves Your Day  [REVEAL]

To get up and running with the app:

First, choose your backup style:

  • Backup in real time using cell data and WiFi together
  • Backup ONLY of WiFi
  • Backup ONLY when plugged in
  • Backup specific folders


1.Open Settings

google photos login Google Photos Google Photo Backup free google photo editing software

2. Choose Backup and Sync

google photos login Google Photos Google Photo Backup free google photo editing software

3.Choose the upload size
High Quality =FREE UNLIMITED!!!

google photos login Google Photos Google Photo Backup free google photo editing software

4. Scroll down a bit and decide WHEN to backup photos

  • WiFi only or Cell Data?
  • Plugged in or Not  …etc.

google photos login Google Photos Google Photo Backup free google photo editing software

5. Choose the folders you want to sync. You can still manually upload a folder anytime.  Sync means that Google will watch these folders for changes.  *This includes deletions!

google photos login Google Photos Google Photo Backup free google photo editing software

6. Last, choose if you want to auto remove pics from your device once they are uploaded.  APPLE iPHONE USERS — THIS WILL KEEP YOUR PHONE FROM FILLING UP!!!

google photos login Google Photos Google Photo Backup free google photo editing software

Google Photo Backup

Google Photo Backup is a small app that runs mostly behind the scenes on your computer.  Tell it what folders to keep an eye on and never think about it again.  From this day forward, your photos will be safe, offsite, and accessible to you anywhere.  Google Photo backup scans the folders you identify and then backs them up to your Google account.  The software is bandwidth efficient meaning it won’t slow down your binge watching on Netflix. Set it, and forget it.

No Folders!?

Google Photos automatically sorts your pictures by date. I have over 300,000 photos that I meticulously organized into folders.  Google will NOT maintain the folder structure you have made.  This makes me NUTS!  However, I do trust Google and I am willing to see their point of view and take advantage of the immense benefits Google Photos offers (like free storage).

READ: Netflix not working? Download movies to iPad [Pictures]

The absence of folders would only work for Google. Why? Google uses recognition software and their amazing algorithms to make your photos searchable.  You can search by face, date, location, type…just about anything,  Type in what you are looking for and you shall find it!

Google even makes albums for you based on date and common content.  If you like an album it suggests (which are very accurate) click “save” and you can add it to your collection at no cost.

Editing with Google Photos is a Snap!

In app editing:

You can choose a filter, auto improve your Google Photo, or use the sliders for granular control. Have fun!

Web based editor:

Every bit as simple.  Choose a filter, auto awesome, or play with sliders until you make it perfect!


There you go.  Google Photo Backup in a nutshell.

Contact me if you have any questions:

As always, Travel Safe!

6 Comments Posted

  1. This is something I’d have to look in to. I already have a Google account so I’m ahead of the game. The other day, I did just what the video showed – went searching for a picture on my iPhone. I have over 3000 photos on my phone, so you can imagine my struggle (I’m sure that’s not a lot compared to some people, lol). I like that Google Photos makes recommendations and it does sound pretty easy to use. I’m not the photographer in the home, but my husband is. I’m going to have to share this with him.

    • Please share it. I am the photographer in my home and I have been searching for years for the perfect solution. Google Photos is not 100% perfect, but it is by far the closest thing I have seen. It is FREE, so there is nothing to lose by trying. Good luck! Google Photo Backup is pretty awesome, let me know if you need any help.

  2. Hello there,

    That’s very interesting post & website, actually, I like to travel a lot & I am a semi-professional photographer, never heard about google photos, it’s a very great idea to save protect your photos from loss!, but I didn’t get the step how you transfer your photos from the DSLR to your Google account? I am using Canon 600D, anyway glad to see that you visited my country (Egypt), hope you enjoyed your stay, & sure I will visit your website again.

    Cheers, Ehab

    • You know, I am glad you asked. I will go back and clarify that! Two methods to get your DSLR shots onto Google Photo Backup.

      1: You can simply transfer them to your computer as you normally would. Just make sure Google Photos is set to watch that folder, and nothing more is ever needed! POOF, they’re there!

      2: If you are traveling, and you want to use a smartphone, you can use an OTG cable or iPhone compatible card reader. Then use your phone to sync the photos to Google Photos while at your hotel.

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