Google’s new cloud-based photo editing and storage service, Google Photos, has raised concern in some quarters that the search engine will mine data from the images and use it for targeted advertising
Launching the free service on 28 May, Google said in a blog: ‘Every second of every day, people around the world are capturing their memories through photos and videos. Humankind has already taken trillions of photos and will take another trillion this year alone.
‘But the more moments we capture, the more challenging it becomes to relive those memories. Photos and videos become littered across mobile devices, old computers, hard drives and online services (which are constantly running out of space). It’s almost impossible to find that one photo right at the moment you need it, and sharing a bunch of photos at once is frustrating, often requiring special apps and logins.
‘We wanted to do better. So today we’re introducing Google Photos — a new, standalone product that gives you a home for all your photos and videos, helps you organise and bring your moments to life, and lets you share and save what matters.’
Google says it maintains image resolution up to 16MP for stills, and 1080p for video.
‘For your eyes only’
The search engine giant added: ‘When you want to find a particular shot, with a simple search you can instantly find any photo — whether it’s your dog, your daughter’s birthday party, or your favorite beach in Santa Barbara. And all of this auto-grouping is private, for your eyes only.’
However, some have pointed to the potential privacy implications for users.
Technology website TechCrunch claimed: ‘There is no doubt that Google Photos is a massive land grab for personal data – at a time when visual imagery is the biggest social currency on the web.’
A spokesperson told the site: ‘Your Google Photos account is just as private and secure as any other Google service.
‘We don’t share your information with others unless you explicitly choose to share it with them.
Google Photos will not use images or videos uploaded onto Google Photos commercially for any promotional purposes, unless we ask for the user’s explicit permission.’
Google’s UK office had yet to respond to a request for comment lodged by Amateur Photographer this morning.