Google has confirmed that its popular app Google Photos is losing one of its most popular features. The company has confirmed that the photo sharing service is losing its ability to automatically sync with Google Drive. Drive is Google’s cloud storage service.

What this basically means is that the photos/videos stored on Google Drive will no longer show up on Photos. And photos/videos uploaded to Google Photos won’t show up within the Photos folder of Drive. Also, the photos/videos deleted on one of these services won’t affect those in another. Google claims this will prevent accidental deletion.

While this may not seem like a deal breaker, the automatic sync between the two features was an immensely useful feature to many. Many users are used to having a Google Drive folder on their computer. The photos/videos they add to this folder would later automatically show up on Photos. And similarly, the photos/videos added to Photos would automatically be downloaded to the Google Drive folder on their computer. This was ideal for offline storage/viewing. But now with automatic sync going away, a lot of users will have to change their storage habits.

The update will take effect starting in July.

What Google Says

Google has penned a whole blog post regarding this update, titled “Changing how Google Drive and Google Photos work together. Here’s their reason:

“We’ve heard feedback that the connection between these services is confusing, so next month, we’re making some changes to simplify the experience across Drive and Photos.”

As a substitution, Google is introducing a new feature called as “Upload from Drive”. This feature will let users manually select photos and videos from Google Drive that they would like to import over to Google Photos. This will however bring one major problem with it. The same photo/video will now count against the storage quota in both Google Drive and Google Photos.
In the blogpost, Google assures its users that the ‘Backup’ and ‘Sync for Windows and Mac’ feature will continue to work as usual. It also assures users that their existing photos and Videos on Google Photos and Drive will remain intact, and the update will only affect future uploads.

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