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May 18, 2017

Google Photos makes it easier to share your shots, create physical photo books

by John_A

Why it matters to you

Do you forget to send your photos to friends and family? Google Photos will now suggest images to share — all you have to do is tap a button.


With a hefty 500 million users, Google Photos is one of Google’s most-loved products, and Wednesday at Google I/O the company announced a number of new features to the service. Most notably, Google is making it much easier to share photos with your friends, both automatically and manually.

Perhaps the biggest new feature is “Suggested Sharing,” which will allow users to share photos with their friends as photos are taken. For example, if you take a photo of a friend, using facial recognition and a series of other smart guesses, Google Photos will be able to tell who that person is, and ask if you want to share the photos with them.

Google Photos will also now feature a new tab at the bottom of the Photos UI. Titled “Sharing,” the tab will offer a number of suggestions on how to share photos with your friends and family. From there, you can review the photos included that you’ll be sharing, then hit the share button. It’s really rather quick and easy.

Photos can also automatically share photos, if you choose to let it do so. For example, if you want your photo library to be automatically shared with your significant other, Google Photos can automatically update their library every time you add new photos to it.

Google knows photos aren’t just digital — many prefer to have actual printed photos — and so it’s launching a new feature to help with that. The feature is called Google Photo Book, and it’s rolling out to Android and iOS in the United States, though it will expand to more countries soon. Through the feature, you’ll be able to select photos that you want printed as part of a Photo Book, then organize them to be printed into a nice-looking, high-quality printed book. Those books will range from $10 to $20, depending on if you want a softcover or hardcover.

On top of those features, Google is also baking Google Lens into Photos. Google Lens is a newly launched service from the company that uses AI to intelligently recognize a range of different pieces of information. For example, you can point Lens at a sign in another language, and it will translate it for you. Point it at a painting, and you can get historical information about that painting.

Google Photos is likely to continue to evolve over the next few years, especially considering how popular it is.

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