Google Photos will end its free unlimited storage on June 1st, 2021

1 Like

Huh, that’s a bummer. Maybe another reason to move stuff away from Google. Question is, where to?

I see this as an inevitable thing. Free to attract, then charge to maintain service.
Storage isn’t free after all.
I’m happy to pay a couple of quid a month for Google 1, 115gb is more than enough.


£16 a year is still pretty good value 🤷 Plus sharing it with your family is easy enough, too.

1 Like

I think if I’m paying for storage, I might as well pay for Apple One. The extras it offers are much better compared to Google 1. And with Apple I know my data is safe

The big issue is, they never said it would happen. They have trillions of photos, made a bunch of people reliant on their service then boom! It now costs money. If I knew this was coming I would’ve never sacrificed the image quality of my photos and I would’ve just paid for something else from the start.

Google were happy to use our photos to train their ML algorithms in exchange for free storage but now they want us to pay for the privilege too.


I’d wager your data is plenty safe with Google too. They’re pretty good at web services.

Agreed on this! Now we all just have years of photos not at as high a res as we’d like given that we now have to pay.

I’m a pretty heavy Google user but this definitlely rings true. I get what Google does with my data and I’m okay with it because the “free” value they provide to me more than covers the other costs. But once I have to pay it changes the equation of what I will and won’t put up with.

Big tech at its “best”. And in the meantime they’ve killed off all the other photo services (except iCloud).

1 Like

I know it is easy to say with hindsight, but what were you expecting from a free service? Pay for a decent service from the start, or at least keep the photos at full resolution on a device whether a computer or a phone.

1 Like

I was talking about the “royal we”.

I already pay for 2TB of iCloud Storage and for BackBlaze, as well as having multiple SSDs with my photos backed up.

As for your question, I was expecting what they were offering to stay in place. This isn’t Everpix / Picturelife / Flickr, it’s the third biggest company in the world.


These days everyone expects everything to be ‘free’ so if any service (Monzo, Google, IFTTT) doesn’t offer it all for free first how is it supposed to build a customer base?

Someone on here told me as much when complaining about IFTTT’s shift to charge – they would never have begun using the service they now rely on had it cost from the beginning.

1 Like

Imagine Monzo offering a free current account (it’s not really a good comparison because Google Photos was free whilst others were paid whereas all banks are pretty much free).

Imagine Monzo giving you 50p every month just to bank with them on top of all the features. A whole bunch of people switch to them, other banks go bust or just reposition themselves because they can’t compete. Then Monzo starts charging everyone £5 a month unless your balance is below £25 (any money you had in your account before the change doesn’t count but if you spend it your allowance gets reduced, of course). How would that feel?

I never expect anything for free. I just know that when I use “free” services, I pay with my data. I expect it and in most cases I’m happy with the trade off so I sign up.

But when I continue to have my data used but I also have to pay for the privilege, it gets harder to take. Especially if it’s a move that was never advertised. Google is in an almost monopolistic situation thanks to the prior offer and now expects everyone to kiss their :face_with_symbols_over_mouth: and be thankful for it.

If it was always positioned as “free for 1 year then $xx.yy a year” I don’t think anyone would have an issue

What’s to say they won’t reduce the capacity or remove the free storage for existing photos offer in the future?


I see no issues with this, I don’t store my photos as high res anyways as any device I view them on the quality is high enough to not need it.

If I did wish to store them in that format then I’d just pay for additional storage once it’s needed.

1 Like

I’ve just read that article, and it’s not exactly the horror story it appeared. It still looks generous in comparison and if I’m reading it right, the charges don’t kick in till the 15GB has been reached.

Most folk (80%) will never hit 15GB anyway (present company excepted). And if the cost of Google One is anything to go by, the package seems great value.

The only issue then, must be the principle of “we weren’t told this would happen”. Well that’s more palatable than “we were told it would never happen”.

Doesn’t feel like in issue…:flushed:


Given that Android is used by billions of people across the world, 20% is still an huge number of people and is likely to be disproportionately in the US and Europe.

Can’t speak for others but the cost isn’t really an issue for me. It’s more the strategy of eliminatiing competition before then upping prices and having a much mroe captive market with limited competition.

I’m the first to complain about Apple’s measly free iCloud stoage but at least you go in knowing exactly where you stand.


I get that. But it’s still a very inexpensive service.

Google Reader.
Google Wave.
Google Buzz.
Google Reader.

No-one should ever expect a Google offering to stay in place.


Yes backblaze and wasabi are dirt cheap , but Google photos includes the client, the image sorting , link sharing , Google photos shared albums etc. For me it’s worth paying for the product, plus there’s a few other Google one perks.

Google Search
Google Drive
Google Sheets
Google Docs
Google Maps
Google Calendar
Google Translate

I’d guess plenty of people are expecting these offerings to stay in place.

I do get your point, and have been burned by Google before. But I count Google Photos in the here to stay list.

Today I started thinking about how I’d de-Google my life. I will be giving Bing and Apple Maps a go. I’ll also migrate files from Drive to iCloud, but I’m unsure how I’d go about replacing YouTube sadly

1 Like

I had a half hearted attempt at de-Googling last year.

I tried different search engines, but I found Google gave me better results (I still use DuckDuckGo on my phone, though).

I have three mapping apps, Waze, Google, and Apple. They all have their good and bad points, but I find that I always come back to Google. And Waze is owned by Google, as well as becoming more and more integrated into Google Maps.

Like you, finding a replacement for YouTube is a struggle for me. But their ever more intrusive advertising is driving me away, anyway.

1 Like