Google Photos has been with us for around five years now, and it’s moved on from just being somewhere that stores our pics and sometimes making an interesting animation to becoming an integral part of the Android experience. Google has decided that the Photos app needed some TLC and so today the search giant has given it a fresh lick of paint, a new icon, and a handy new Map View feature.
Let’s kick things off with the new icon. I have to admit that I don’t like it. It’s a simple design, and it isn’t entirely different from the old pinwheel icon, but it kinda feels like a regression on Google’s part. What do you think of the new icon?
The refreshed app experience brings your photos and videos to the fore with the search function being brought down to the bottom of the page as part of the new three-tab structure.
Other changes include the demise of the Albums tab whose functionality has been mostly transferred over to the new Library tab, and the omission of the Sharing tab, which is now accessible via the conversation tab in the top left corner app-wide.
The Search tab now includes an interactive map view of your photos and videos, letting you pinch and zoom around the globe to see the memories of your travels. If you enable location from your device camera or Location History in Settings, your photos and videos will be organized and searchable by place.
The Memories feature has been around a while now, but Google is adding more types of memories to it, including the best pics of you, your closest friends, trips, and last week’s highlights. Automatic creations such as movies, collages, animations, and stylized photos have also been integrated into the Memories tab, with the option of hiding specific people or time periods.
Google says that the new features are rolling out from today so it may be worthing heading to the Play Store to see if an update is available. If your app is up to date and you aren’t seeing the changes, it’s likely that the search giant hasn’t flipped the server-side switch just yet.