Google Photos free storage ends: Google One plans, pricing, how to buy and what extra do you get – Times of India
All Google accounts offer 15GB of free storage that is shared across Gmail, Drive (includes Docs, Sheets, etc) and Google Photos. In a major push to make people subscribe to Google One, Google has stopped providing free unlimited Google Photos backup in High Quality starting June 1. This means all photos that you backup on Google Photos–whether it’s in High Quality or Original Quality– will consume the free 15GB storage. Earlier, only those photos that were backed in Original Quality occupied Google account storage.
For those unaware, photos backed in High Quality are compressed and are actually of lower quality when compared to Original Quality photos. Having said that, High Quality photos occupy less space than Original Quality photos.
What is Google One?
Google One is simply the new name for Google Drive Storage and it’s a paid service. It essentially offers more storage to your Google account. Whenever you require more than the 15GB storage that you get for free, you will have to subscribe to Google One. The benefits of Google One subscription include extra storage, access to Google customer care (if at all you face any problems), option to share storage with family members and some exclusive offers og Google Play.
Ideally, the most important benefit is that you will be able to expand your storage limit from 15GB to 100GB, 200GB or 2TB depending on how much you require and want to spend.
Google Photos will continue to continue to occupy your Google account storage even if you get Google One
Don’t be in this misconception that Google Photos will again become ‘free and unlimited’ the moment you buy any Google One subscription. Even after getting a Google One subscription, all photos that you backup on Google Photos will continue to occupy your Google account storage. In other words, you will be paying Google to backup your photos.
Google One Plans and pricing
For most users, there are three plans available:
-100GB storage at Rs 130 per month (or Rs 1,300 per year)
-200GB storage at Rs 210 per month (or Rs 2,100 per year)
-2TB storage at Rs 650 per month (or Rs 6,500 per year).
The additional benefits of all the plans are similar, apart from the 2TB plan where you get a free VPN service for your Android phone.
You can share this storage with up to six family members. It is recommended that you purchase a yearly plan, if at all you are interested, as you will save some money and also you won’t get repeated mails from Google every month to extend your subscription as Google may stop letting you access your files beyond the free 15GB storage if you don’t pay up.
There are several other plans offering 10TB, 20TB or 30TB storage. But for that you would need to be a Google One member first.
How to buy a Google One subscription?
It is easy to buy a Google One subscription. You can visit the Google One website, login with the desired Google account and select the plan that you want to purchase. Note that if you have multiple Google accounts, with family sharing you can share the Google One storage among different Google accounts (up to six) that belong to you. The purchase is similar to buying apps on Google Play.
It is not mandatory to get Google One subscription
Note that it is not at all mandatory to get a Google One subscription. There are other services as well. You may decide to move to another service provider like Microsoft OneDrive, Apple iCloud, DropBox, Amazon Photos and others. Or, you may want to open a new Google account with free 15GB storage to save your future photos. Another option is buying a portable SSD with cloud storage to save the photos.