May 22, 2022

Amazon, Google, SmugMug, Apple: what’s the best home for your photos?

Now prices is difficult to figure, because it also includes your Gmail and Drive. The search that is so great on Google Photos isnt as seamless on Drive, where heaps of documents, e-mails and other data show up along with your photos in a search.

Google Photos/Drive.

When last we fulfilled, I mentioned the dangers of using Apples iCloud Photos for picture backup for one easy reason: if you delete an image off your iPhone, Apple will in turn likewise erase it from iCloud *.

This time I d like to discuss the best alternative image backup options for you in more information, due to the fact that like it or not, in todays world, much like paying for food, shelter and taxes, if you snap images on your mobile phone or camera, you will be paying for online storage. And paying more in the coming years as well, as you snap more images.

Why: Apple deletes images from your iCloud Photos pool if you kill a photo from your iPhone. But in this manner, you can upload directly to iCloud without having to fret.

Theres no such thing as totally free backup any longer.


Con: Im not a fan of Microsoft apps, so this program isnt for me. And 1 TB isnt adequate storage, says the person with 40 terabytes of disk drive area on his desk.

About the Author.


Pro: As I say, theres no such thing as complimentary storage anymore, and if you require access to Microsoft security and apps like PowerPoint, Excel, Word and Outlook, you get photo backup and programs we used to purchase outright. Functions seamlessly in the Windows world, in addition to iOS.

Apple and Microsoft provide you 5 GBs of “totally free” storage as starter points, but a few weekends of casual image and video shooting, and youll consume that up in no time.

And theyre growing all the time.

Well, let me clarify that. Google uses 15 gigabytes of “totally free” storage, however that counts for Google Photos, along with Gmail and Google Drive. I attempt to remain on top of my Gmail, however my mail box currently has 46.27 worth of gigabytes that requires to be cleared out, and I have 17.21 GBs in Google Photos.

* Apple iCloud Drive.

Pro: Unlimited storage tops the list. Download the Amazon Photos app and you can set up automated uploads from your iPhone or Android gadget. Another bonus: if you have Amazon Fire TV streaming, your recent smartphone pictures (or ones published from your electronic camera) will reveal up on the TV as a screensaver, and thats fun.

Con: Search for pictures isnt in the Google/Apple league, although you can assist yourselves by putting in the time to keyword and tag images, a chore lots of people might not wish to do. When you snapped the photos (or visited a particular location) youll have a simpler time discovering those images, if you remember. Videos are included in vehicle uploads, however just if theyre 1.5 GBs or less, which knocks many of my videos out of the car loop. (I upload by hand.).

Why: Pay $9.99 month-to-month for 2 TB of storage, and have a much easier time finding your images and videos, thanks to Googles superior search.

Why: With rates starting at $75 annual for limitless storage, its the most budget-friendly of the services.

Dan Donovan, a St. Louis photographer, however, wrote me a lengthy and thoughtful defense of the iCloud system, which he likes. “The days of manually handling your photos when shooting with a phone are gone. Simply let innovation look after it for you!”.

My recommendation: save your things on Amazon, but elsewhere as well.

Jefferson Graham is a Los Angeles-based writer-photographer, the host of the “Photowalks” travel photography series on YouTube, and co-host of the iPhone Photo Show podcast, a former USA TODAY tech writer and working professional photographer. You can discover more of Jeffs work on his site, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, and Twitter. This article was also published here and shared with consent.

” I had all my photos and videos in iCloud (Photos), and one day all videos vanished,” composed Raymond Dionne to me this week from Nashville. “Why oh why did I stop backing up to my external, what a moron I am.”.


Pro: ( Full disclosure: SmugMug is sponsoring the upcoming season 4 of #PhotowalksTV.).

I invited Dan to come onto the iPhone Photo Show podcast with me to discuss it. Search for it in the coming weeks.

The most current would be the one that didnt include the erased image from the other day.).

Bear in mind that keeping images on Facebook, Instagram and Shutterfly does not count, as the services grind your initial to a low-resolution image that cant be returned to you as high-res.

And a disk drive purchase is way more affordable, if not as reliable. (You can choose up a little 4 TB drive now for under $100.) I like having online and offline backup. I wouldnt do it any other method.

Why: Members of the $139 yearly Prime membership service for faster shipping and entertainment also get limitless image (but not video) uploads.

Pro: The default image app on Android phones (and no. 1 most downloaded picture app on iOS, per Apptopia) happens to have the finest search. In a world where were snapping hundreds and thousands of images yearly, thats actually crucial. Google Drive, which includes your membership, is a pure online hard disk drive that unlike Apple iCloud Photos, does not delete stuff if you remove it from your device.

And you could publish your entire picture library to Amazon and see the terms one day and all of a sudden modification. Con: Search for images isnt in the Google/Apple league, although you can help yourselves by taking the time to keyword and tag images, a task numerous individuals might not desire to do. If you remember when you snapped the photos (or went to a specific location) youll have a much easier time discovering those images. The search that is so fantastic on Google Photos isnt as smooth on Drive, where loads of files, emails and other data reveal up along with your images in a search.

Why: Online storage and Microsoft apps for $6.99 regular monthly and 1 TB of storage.

On Mac computers, the Finder has an iCloud category along with your connected tough drives. Here you drag a folder onto the iCloud virtual hard drive to submit it directly.

You will be if youre not paying now. The question is: where do your dollars go, as you have a number of alternatives.

Con: Youll get the exact same daily nag messages notifying that youre either out of room, or about to be, and comprehending the iCloud Drive system is confusing. (Its built to have all your data readily available on several gadgets, and to back them all daily. Thats why the deletes disappear. Apple is sweeping the most current variation of the devices, and showing you the most present version. The current would be the one that didnt include the deleted photo from the other day.).

Targeted at photographers, however accessible to all, the cost and SmugMug services (customer assistance that responds to questions within minutes) need to make anyone trying to find a safe house for their photos consider it. Pictures look terrific online and in the app, theyre simple to share, and the auto-upload procedure works like a charm. Everything you snap on your phone enters into a particular storage folder thats organized by month and year, so even when on trip, you know everything is being backed up while you sleep.

Con: The interface of the Photos app isnt quite, navigation is hard, and the canned slideshows Amazon creates to actually bad music arent worth your time. And you could upload your whole picture library to Amazon and see the terms one day and suddenly modification. This occurred in 2017 when Amazon eliminated off what was called “Cloud Drive,” a service that also, at one time, offered unrestricted storage.

Regardless of my asterisk and workaround, I still wouldnt feel safe having folders in iCloud Drive and nowhere else, considering what takes place in iCloud Photos.