Apple iPhone Users Get Unlimited Original Quality Storage on Google Photos, Pixel 4 Users Have to Pay Up


Sometimes interesting things happen in the world of business, such as when you give your competitor a pretty significant advantage in the photo storage department while undercutting your own premium users’ access to that same benefit.

Pixel 4 from Google.

Pixel 4 users might be shocked to learn that they will have to pay for unlimited original quality photo storage on Google Photos but Apple’s iPhone users won’t have to do that.

When you consider just how important photography is to smartphones – especially of the top tier, marquee variety – then it becomes even more questionable that Google would take this approach. So, what gives?

PetaPixel cites an explanation from Redditor stephenvsawyer who said: “Because iPhones shoot photos in HEIC format and not JPG, you get free unlimited original quality backups to Google Photos due to HEIC being smaller and more efficient than JPG so Google doesn’t touch the files…iPhones therefore get free unlimited ORIGINAL quality backups simply because it would cost Google both storage space (because if Google tried to compress iPhone’s HEIC photos they would actually become larger) and computing power (because Google doesn’t need to compress and process all of the billions of photos iPhones backup.) So Apple is literally saving Google millions of dollars by shooting their photos in HEIC and it benefits iPhone users as well because we get free original quality backups.”

A much more technical explanation than we would have expected but we’ll take it. Again, we can’t underscore how much of an advantage this could be for iPhone users that also have Google Photos’ accounts.

It also makes us wonder whether Google will eventually make the same ability open to its Pixel 4 users in the future. After all, it is their brand new, top-of-the-line headset.

What do you think? Tangible advantage for Apple or just a quirk that will eventually be smoothed out? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.

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About Author

Kehl is our staff photography news writer since 2017 and has over a decade of experience in online media and publishing and you can get to know him better here and follow him on Insta.

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