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Illustration: Lazaro Gamio/Axios

Google announced Wednesday it will stop offering unlimited free photo storage on June 1, 2021. However, photos uploaded before then won't count against the new 15 GB free limit.

Why it matters: Thanks to its free storage, as well as excellent search and ease of use, Google Photos has been the ideal backup option for many users — and drove many paid competitors out of the space.

Details: In a blog post, Google said the move was needed to ensure the product had a sustainable future.

  • "Since so many of you rely on Google Photos to store your memories, it's important that it's not just a great product, but also continues to meet your needs over the long haul," Google said.
  • Google has always limited how many full-resolution photos and videos free users could upload, but has driven out much of the competition by offering unlimited storage of photos that are somewhat compressed but still decently high-resolution.

What they're saying:

  • Platformer's Casey Newton: "Google earned $11.2 billion in profits last quarter and uses all your uploaded photos to train its ML algorithms, which offers it other enormous competitive benefits."
  • BuzzFeed's Mat Honan: "I completely understand the teeth-gnashing, but I'd much rather pay for it than have the company monetize it in other ways."

Go deeper

Oct 17, 2020 - Politics & Policy

A history of voter exclusion

Photo Illustration: Sarah Grillo. Photos: Bettmann, Chicago History Museum/Getty Image

46 mins ago - Sports

The end of COVID’s grip on sports may be in sight

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Packed stadiums and a more normal fan experience could return by late 2021, NIAID director Anthony Fauci said yesterday.

Why it matters: If Fauci's prediction comes true, it could save countless programs from going extinct next year.

Trump's 2024 begins

Trump speaking to reporters in the White House on Thanksgiving. Photo: Erin Schaff - Pool/Getty Images

President Trump is likely to announce he'll run again in 2024, perhaps before this term even ends, sources tell Axios.

Why it matters: Trump has already set in motion two important strategies to stay relevant and freeze out other Republican rivals.