Goodbye to unlimited free Google Photos storage: from June 2021 we have to pay when exceeding 15 GB

Google just announced that Google Photos’ unlimited free storage plan says goodbye. From June 2021, everything we upload to our Google account will count as part of the free 15 GB that Google gives with a Gmail account. When overcoming them, then, you will have to pay.

The other part of the news is that all the content that we upload until then will not count as part of that 15 GB storage. In other words, all the content that we have stored so far with the ‘High Quality’ option will continue to be available forever in Google Photos through our Google account.

According to Google, the change in the unlimited storage policy has been made “in order to welcome more memories and build Google Photos for the future .” In addition, they say, “this change also allows us to keep pace with growing demand for storage.” It is not the only change, Google Drive files are also affected and the company advises that it will delete content from inactive accounts automatically.

Goodbye to five years that have changed how we manage our photos

Google photos storage
Google photos

Google kicked off unlimited cloud storage with Google+, but it wasn’t until 2015 when it launched its current ‘High Quality’ free unlimited plan, the fine print of which is that photos and videos were compressed versus the ‘Quality’ plan Original ‘, whose contents did occupy part of the 15 GB quota. Unlike Google+, Google Photos has allowed high quality images to be stored despite compression , since its maximum resolution is 16 megapixels, something that has been more than enough until recently in the mobile world. The maximum resolution for video is 1080p.

Since then, everything has changed for millions of people on iOS and Android, who have completely neglected what to do with their photos, since Google Photos has managed them in the most transparent and convenient way possible, with great additions of artificial intelligence and with a very powerful search. An example of this is that Google claims that more than 28,000 million photos and videos are uploaded to the services each week.

There is only one type of user that this measure will not affect: the one with a Google Pixel from 1 to 5. The photos that are uploaded in ‘High quality’ from those devices will still not count for the 15 GB, after losing from the Google Pixel 3 the ability to upload the photos in ‘Original quality’ and without occupying part of the quota.

Google estimates that as of June 1, 2021, more than 80% of people will be able to continue using their account for three years without paying , as it does not exceed 15 GB. For many other users who already have an almost full account to use it for Gmail or Drive, this measure from Google will change everything from day 1. The company ensures that until the moment the change takes effect, no action will have to be taken. So that each user knows for how long the available space in his account will be given to the shot who takes photos, Google has launched a website from which he reports this , as we see in the upper screenshot.

These are the Google One payment plans if you go above 15 GB storage

At the moment, Google has not announced that Google One, its cloud storage service for Google accounts (Gmail, Drive, etc.) will change the prices of its different plans. Let’s remember the monthly (or annual) cost they have and what storage they provide to the users who hire them:

  • 100 GB : 1.99 euros per month or 19.99 euros per year
  • 200 GB : 2.99 euros per month or 29.99 euros per year
  • 2 TB : 9.99 euros per month or 99.99 euros per year.

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