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Google Photos free storage ends on June 1: 5 tips to manage storage and save money

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Six months ago, Google announced a change to its high-quality storage policy. The unlimited storage option in Google photos will end on June 1, which means users will now be left with just 15GB of free storage split between Gmail, Google Drive, and Photos. If your storage limit exceeds, you need to get more storage starting at Rs. 130/month for 100 GB.

How to identify if you have reached the 15 GB limit?

Users will be shown an estimate of when they are likely to run out of their free storage limit of 15GB.

To view the remaining storage and how long it will last, head to while logged in to your Google account. Google will also remind users when they are nearing the limit through a notification on the app and an email.

Google Photos free storage ends on June 1

What to do in case you are near to the 15 GB mark?

If you’re still far away from the existing storage limit, there’s nothing to worry about. Although if your storage is beyond 15GB it will cost you money.

Here are 5 useful tips that can help you manage your storage and save the money:

  1. Convert existing ‘original quality’ to ‘high quality’

Google currently allows users to upload and backup images in two versions i.e. ‘high quality’ and ‘original quality’. Google resizes photos larger than 16MP to 16MP for ‘high-quality’ photos in order to save space. Importantly, any images uploaded before the change comes into force won’t count towards the new limit. So, all existing high-quality content will remain exempted from the storage quota. Thus, in case you have not converted your ‘original quality’ images to ‘high quality’, it’s time to do the same to ensure it is not counted in your 15GB free storage.

  1. Remove all duplicate and blurred pictures to make space

Google Photos has added a new storage management tool to help quickly clean up the storage space. With this tool, you can delete blurry photos, screenshots, large videos, and other photos that you might not want to have. You will be able to access this tool by visiting Account Settings in Google Photos > Back up and Sync settings > Manage Storage.

Google’s tool will let you review large files, emails which are taking up space, and also tell exactly how space you will save when you delete these photos, videos and emails.

  1. Clean unwanted files from Google Drive and Gmail

Since 15GB is shared across Google Drive, Docs and Gmail, it makes sense to check these folders and get rid of the redundant files/emails in order to save space.

  1. Move your photos to your smartphone’s internal storage, provided it has a high storage capacity
  2. Use the new storage management tool by Google that not only shows you how much storage you have left, but also helps you to find and delete unwanted content such as blurry photos, screenshots and large videos, so you can get the most out of your storage. Here’s the path for the tool-
Account Storage > Manage Storage > Review and Delete > Select Type (say Blurry photos) > Select the images you want to remove > Tap on trash icon to delete

Meanwhile, Google recently announced a new tool for the Photos app to let users manage storage better ahead of the June 1 deadline – the day it will lose free unlimited storage. Google is adding a new “Save to Photos” button to Gmail which you can press to automatically save an emailed image to Google Photos. Unfortunately, it only works on JPEGs for the time being.

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