Google Photos will soon stop syncing to Google Drive

Google Drive and Google Photos

If you have come to rely on Google Drive to automatically backup the images you have in Google Photos, you may have to find another option very soon. Google has announced that as of July, the way Google Drive and Google Photos integrate with each other is changing.

In short, Google Photos will no longer be automatically synchronize with Google Drive. The change is coming because Google says it has, "feedback that the connection between these services is confusing".


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The move is unlikely to be popular with users, but Google says the changes it is introducing will "simplify the experience across Drive and Photos". One of the primary reasons for the change is to prevent people from unwittingly deleting photos.

Google explains:

Starting in July, new photos and videos from Drive won't automatically show in Photos. Similarly, new photos and videos in Photos will not be added to the Photos folder in Drive. Photos and videos you delete in Drive will not be removed from Photos. Similarly, items you delete in Photos will not be removed from Drive. This change is designed to help prevent accidental deletion of items across products.

Integration between Google Drive and Google Photos is not being lost altogether, however. The Windows and Mac Backup and Sync apps can still be used to upload High Quality or Original Quality images -- with the later continuing not to count against storage quotas.

Manual uploading of images from Photos to Drive will also be possible, as Google explains:

We've heard that many of you would like more granular control when copying photos and videos from Drive into Photos. So we're bringing a new feature to called "Upload from Drive", which lets you manually choose photos and videos from Drive, including "Shared with Me" items, to import into Photos. Once copied, these items are not connected between the two products. Since photos and videos will no longer sync across both products, items copied in Original Quality will count towards your storage quota in both Drive and Photos.

Google stresses that when the changes come about, no photos that have already been uploaded will be deleted.

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