Google Photos is ending free unlimited photo storage for non-Pixels as of June 1st, 2021

Get ready to cough up the cash for a paid Google One account

Google Photos is ending free unlimited photo storage for non-Pixels

One of Google Photos’ biggest perks is being nerfed next year. Unlimited “high-quality” photo backup is going away for non-Pixel phones as of June 1st, 2021. Folks using Google Photos to back up photos on other phones will see all uploads after that date count against shared Google storage.

The news comes courtesy of a blog post at Google’s site, with Google admitting it “may come as a surprise” — that’s a bit of an understatement. Still, this continues an otherwise logical trend over the last few years. Google’s Pixel 4 didn’t come with “original-quality” backups at all, and the Pixel 2 only gets unlimited original quality backups until the end of 2020, though the original Google Pixel is still promised backups forever.

Backup options in Google Photos.

For context, Google Photos offers two options for photo backups: high quality and original quality. Original quality means the original resolution, while “high quality” may be a smaller, resized version.

Google is clear that already-uploaded photos are unaffected by this change, so you won’t suddenly have gigabytes of storage taken up by prior backups come June 1st. According to Google’s estimates, the free 15GB of storage that comes with every Google account is enough for most folks to carry on for the next three years without any issue, and customers will be notified both in-app and by email when the run into the limit. Google also explicitly states that the Pixel 1 through 5 are unaffected by this change and still subject to unlimited high-quality backups. The phrasing casts some doubt for future Pixels, though.

Google Photos is one of the company’s most appreciated services, though the free ride for photo backups had to end at some point. Google’s been stepping up efforts to promote its paid Google One storage plans, including a complimentary VPN. An upgraded Google Photos “color pop” feature will also be locked behind the Google One paywall.

Google Photos storage estimate tool.

For folks doing the calculus for a paid plan at home, Google has a convenient page here that shows how long your current storage plan might last, and a new tool to better manage backed-up content in Google Photos will debut when the new rules kick in. Either way, you’ve got about six months to figure out your photo-backup plans.



Horrific news. No alternative!! T_T


for people who still want the support, you can install custom roms (the one’s called pixel experience)


Exploit to pretend to be a Pixel via custom ROM to get unlimited storage of Google Photos has long been fixed. Anyone has a try and you’ll know.

At this rate, we will be paying for google search in the near future

I installed the ROM 2 years ago on a Samsung device which is 6 years old now, I never owned a Pixel device.

The google photos policy was updated a few days back, How can it be fixed “A long ago” ?

Anyways, there’s catch, they will only exempt the photos uploaded from the same device, not other device.

I’ll try expressing more clearly:

If you’re saying that “your Samsung phone with Pixel Experience ROM has Unlimited Storage of Original Quality Uploads at now (Just like real Pixel Phone now)”, it means disguise is working, which conflicts with what I’ve heard from many sources (which is certainly a good thing, we all hope disguise is still valid)

If you’re saying that “your Samsung phone with Pixel Experience ROM has Unlimited Storage of High Quality Uploads at now (like any phone can be now)” and saying “It still will be able to have Unlimited Storage of High Quality Uploads after June 1st 2021 (like real Pixel Phone)”, the second half can’t be confirmed until June 1st 2021, so we’ll see what happens.

Which one is your meaning? (Sorry my english is bad)

Whether and when Google fixs the “disguise pixel phone using ROM” vulnerability has no time dependency on this policy change of Google Photos. They’re 2 different things.

Yeah, my Samsung device will have free unlimited high-quality storage even after 1st Jun 2021, (like real pixel phone). The email above (that I shared) clearly states as it says

“Your Pixel device will not be impacted by this change. High-quality uploads from your device will continue to be free and unlimited.”

I completely agree with you on this :point_down: , but as far as I think, there are very fewer devices with custom ROMs and I don’t think that Google will strictly check for it or make a fix.

I guess, why doesn’t google ban adblockers on YouTube? Any guesses?

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