01
Aug
Screenshot_2014-08-01-15-00-42

Google+, for all the criticism it has garnered from the "hip" tech crowd, has been an incredibly important product for the search giant since its unveiling back in 2011. Remember when you had to get an invite to join Google+? How far we've come.

But Google+ quickly became more than just Google+. The Hangouts messaging platform and, later, Google+ Photos were key leaps forward for Google in two areas where the company was arguably becoming stagnant. Google Talk, for all of the love it got over the years, was aging poorly, and Hangouts made for a much more modern, fully-featured (you know, aside from statuses) replacement with robust video and voice capabilities. Google+ Photos hasn't made quite the splash Hangouts has, but the man who acted as the managerial spearhead and philosophical lead for the platform, Vic Gundotra, made photos a priority in the year leading up to his departure.

Robust editing tools, Auto-Awesome, and a visual-focused design for the social network have made Google+ an excellent place to share photos - I know I use it for this all the time.

According to Bloomberg, that success isn't going unnoticed. There are allegedly plans to fully separate the Photos platform from Google+, and potentially rebrand it into something more broadly-available (like, I don't know, Google Photos?), and without the requirement of a Google+ account. Curious indeed.

With Gundotra gone, Google's upper management is likely much freer to explore this possibility, and create a product to compete with the likes of Flickr and Instagram more directly. Uncoupling the product from Google+ would almost definitely allow a more involved editing process, potentially getting Google in the ring with the likes of Lightroom. Google's heavy focus on developing web-friendly products would fit perfectly into such a scheme, and could turn Photos into a legitimate photography tool for Chrome OS and Android.

As far as additional detail, Bloomberg doesn't really have any to share. It's also worth nothing that I'm pretty sure this isn't the first time this rumor's been through the mill, so take it all with a grain of salt.

Bloomberg

David Ruddock
David's phone is whatever is currently sitting on his desk. He is an avid writer, and enjoys playing devil's advocate in editorials, and reviewing the latest phones and gadgets. He also doesn't usually write such boring sentences.

  • vyktorsouza

    YES

  • Alfredo Hernández

    It makes sense. As long as they are connected, I'm cool with it.

  • Shining Wing

    If this means that I can install the G+ app without installing Photos, then good!

    • Grayson

      If this means I that can manage my photos without G+ being thrown in my face, then good!

    • AbbyZFresh

      I'm more excited for the opposite.

      • https://plus.google.com/+MichaelBond codemonkey85

        I'm more excited for some separation on the iOS side of things. I'd like to have faster and more "native" feeling getting to my photos there.

    • Fatty Bunter

      You have that backwards. For 99% of people.

  • D

    Is there any way to set my observed pages as my default feed, so I don't have to select it from the dropdown every time.

  • a

    picasa

    • WORPspeed

      Was about to post this, but knew it was too obvious and someone would beat me to it.
      Well done

    • bos

      This. I don't care what they call it, as long as they restore the picasa functionality without all the crappy g+ screen clutter

  • Phil Oakley

    Merge it into Drive. Docs, Sheets, Slides and Photos.

    • http://cassidyjames.com Cassidy James

      I dunno, a photo manager and office suite seem like they're very different. But maybe!

      • http://si97.com/ Saif

        Makes sense for Drive (file storage). Heck even store YouTube videos, Google Play music & movies there.

  • kat11

    Remember the dogfood Photos app here.

  • gkat

    This

    • Spam Filter

      Daring of you to share the screenshot of the dogfood version. Also, Hands-(free?)???

    • ib

      What's with that status bar and horrible resolution?

      • Franco Rossel

        Google doesn't know how to edit properly.

        • tleaf100

          google do not know how to do anything properly,wanna buy a cgeap floating dumb barge/come shop,goigle have a few going cheap.
          all their ideas/products are half arsed,half bodged rushed flops that have very short lifetimes.
          they now ready to wipe hands of android to go piss about with silver,cos they bodged android and now their bored,so look forward to more google products/services that dont work/not outside america/are plain rubbish/or suddenly close/over users request to keep them running,g reader ?
          google=typical america,rushed bodged rubbish products that fail early,or if bought up company/service,make a bodged crap google version,then close original down,sack staff,then wonder why noone usrs crap google version and close that down as well.
          only product they have that is older than 7 years is search,average life for g prod/setvice,about 3 years.

          • Franco Rossel

            Your redaction and orthography is so bad that I couldn't read more than 2 phrases.

          • Michael Berrios

            I could feel my IQ dropping as I continued to read your post...

          • paxmos

            Let me put tleaf100's comment through Google Translate !!!

          • DoYouEvenBro Bro?

            "not outside america"
            I figured out why you're so angry.

          • RajivSK

            The rushed beta projects that pop up and get killed off just as easily are one of the main reasons I admire Google as a company. They're one of the biggest companies in the world and still manage to behave like a startup. That's what makes it so interesting to follow. I don't care about polish or even succes of their products, it's the teenager like behaviour of the company that tickles my inner mad scientist. If you want polish and stability (*boring) you know right where to look. Have fun anticipating change in materials or color pallet for roughly the same product every year.

          • StraightEdgeNexus

            My brain literally got f**cked up reading your co... somewhat comment.

          • Evan Cm

            yeah, you can keep hating, while everyone in the world keeps using Google for everything in their lives.

      • joser116

        It's a snapshot of a GIF posted by Google on Google+

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    • fbl

      It just means that there is a dogfood version of photos, which is not exactly surprising.

  • Mg

    I dont care what i sign on with or what its called, if google match flickrs 1tb of free storage, i will return to using it.

    • AbbyZFresh

      Flickr is pretty much the FB of image hosting for photographers. Google Photos will not catch up anything.

    • https://plus.google.com/+TroyLeonard Troy Leonard

      google photos storage is unlimited, I have uploaded over a 1000 pics.

  • Fatal1ty_93_RUS

    Good, now untie YouTube, Play Store and Hangouts from Google+, then we'll talk

    • Karol Klimczak

      Tell me please what difference does it make to you? You have to have some kind of an account to access these services anyway. With G+ you basically have 1 account. You don't have to use it's social part. Previously it was called google or gmail account. They just changed it's name and added more features. And if you want to complain about G+ apps size it might have been a problem on 4 or 5 years old phones but not on any newer devices.

      • Fatal1ty_93_RUS

        I already had an account to do all that - which was basically my Gmail aka Google Account.
        I don't know what world you live in, but in reality the Google Account and the Google+ Account are two different things.

        If I didn't have signed up for that shitty excuse of a social network that's only good for reading posts from people like AP crew, I wouldn't be able to:
        - natively backup my photos and videos
        - use hangouts to chat with fellow XDA users
        - leave play store reviews
        - comment on YouTube
        - use play games to full potential including cloud saves and such

        Google is FORCING me to sign up at Google+ to UAE all of that, and it is the cheapest and dumbest way of racking up the "active" users and then show it off on presentations and public announcements

        Also since google now owns twitch, I am excepting this shitty social network to be injected as a mandatory requirement to use the Twitch to its full potential, which is another fucking stupid idea

        You'll see for yourself how in a few months they will ask you to sign in via G+ or you can suck a dick

  • Defenestratus

    I'm going to laugh at all the G+ haters on the internet when Google is like "To use our services you have to have a google account - oh and btw, your google account is your google+ account."

    The fact of the matter is thats how it already works. Google+ is just your google account whether you use the social service or not. I'll bet a dollar to donuts that Google changes the social aspect of G+ to something like "Google Circles".

    And for all of its faults, G+ is still the best social networking service IMO just for the fact that the signal-to-noise ration is better than any of the others, especially Twitter.

    I use it just as a news story collation service and to keep in touch with people who share my hobby.

    If I want to run into crazy ex-girlfriends, I'll make a facebook account. If I feel like hurling unwarranted expletives at some B-list celebrity, I'll make a twitter account.

    • Guest

      Google+ is where I have found almost every ex-girlfriend I have. Facebook isn't.

      • Truth Hurtsington

        Maybe they didn't bother blocking youyou there?

        • cellabonez

          here is another 20k thumbs up to compliment your comment

    • AnonyGuest

      No, my google account is my google account. I don't have g+, and I never will for as long as they force it onto people. If you're suggesting that one day they'll force everyone to make one to access Gmail or Android, I will bounce to a different platform I could always try giving windows phone another go lol

      • epsiblivion

        they are one and the same. anyone who doesn't have a "profile" just has it inactive. it's just another service in the google umbrella.

      • mmark27

        What a boner. Who cares.

      • Franco Rossel

        If you have Gmail, you have a G+ profile. Like it or not, it's there.

      • Adrian Meredith

        you have a g+ account in exactly the same way you drive account or a youtube account or a calendar account.

        How many times can i say it THERS NO SUCH THING AS A G+ ACCOUNT. Its "one account all of google" you never have to visit g+ if you dont want to.

        • dxppxd

          So why do they need you to activate the G+ account? If it's already 1 account, all of google, stop asking for the bs activation of G+ to do the most basic things: hangouts, use the youtube app, post playstore comments…

          Just seems stupid for the big G to demand activation of the G+ account for things that don't need it. Maybe they do want to inflate G+ usage statistics.

    • blindexecutioner

      Nope. The day that happens is the day they lose an android user.

      As a social network it will never be better than Facebook. I don't use Facebook either...

      • AbbyZFresh

        YOU don't use Facebook. But over a billion people do. AND it still has yet to tap into the rest of the world.

        G+ was DOA.

      • เกรียนเทพ ดี อันลิมิเตด

        So, you might not know a thing...

      • Adrian Meredith

        except g+ is nothing like facebook, much more like twitter or pintrest. In fact its also very much like google reader, I follow all my favourite websites and i skim read the articles through my feed.

    • duse

      This is the biggest mistake Google made since day one. They should've never tried to "compete" with Facebook by creating a "social service" with a new name. Everyone already had Google profile pages before G+, they were just very basic. Picasa, Talk, etc. already existed. All they had to do was convert the profile page into a place where you could post and share stuff. Done. Everyone would've used it and no one would've complained. Instead they wanted to "brand" their social network to take on FB and Twitter and it got them nowhere.

      • CoreRooted

        G+ has done just fine for itself even competing against the other social networks. Usage has grown year after year and more and more people are willingly joining (as opposed to being forced). Many of the features that G+ has was curated directly from user suggestions.

        Plus, at the time G+ launched, EVERYONE was trying to do a social network in some form or another. If Google hadn't done G+, it would have been a major loss for them in terms of the platform and where Gondutra wanted to go with things.

        • AbbyZFresh

          G+ had gotten NOWHERE for Google except for integration into other services.

          • CoreRooted

            Have you looked at usage stats recently for G+ recently or even for the past 3 years? Usage of G+ HAS increased steadily. There's no denying the numbers.

          • AnonGuy

            The usage numbers are a farce and bolstered by forced integrations. You people are being deluded. If it was so populous with normal users people wouldn't still be complaining. If any other company without other products to use to steer users in created this, it would have already been put to pasture and deemed a failure.

            The metrics outside of Google show it struggling heavily to keep pace with the top social networks out there, and their lack of API to make the service more accessible to developers didn't help either.

          • CoreRooted

            Given that G+ has has a steady +33% growth year after year (as reported by multiple statistics trackers outside of Google), your facts are wrong. People still complain about FaceBook even though they have 1b+ users. So, the complaint argument is also squashed.

            You are entitled to your opinion about a given service. However, don't confuse your opinion with fact, because the statistics cleary disprove everything you have stated.

      • Adrian Meredith

        Its pretty damn successful for a "mistake"

        • duse

          10x the people would be using Hangouts, Photos, etc. if it didn't require "Google+". If "Google+" was just enhanced Google profile pages, no one would complain and everyone would be using these services. I know many people who used to use Picasa and Google Talk and never moved on to G+ Photos or Hangouts because they got to the Google+ sign-up page and stopped right there. Yes, it was a mistake to require a new sign-up for any of these things.

          • TKfromCLE

            Some people just can't be bothered to attach a name and photo to an existing email account. What a mistake on Google's part.

            (Posted after signing into Discus with my Google Account. What a mistake!)

    • tleaf100

      in america are you,
      g- is a flop.
      google still cannot work out/decide whst they are trying to do/achieve with g-,until they do,the 95% of the online world will continue to ignore g- as a boring unusable mesd,that appears to have been thoughtup by some retard alien from another planet,one that has never encountered normal,working products before and just thtows a mess together.
      g-,googles very own equvelant of ms windows 8.
      except ms listened and learnt,google dont and wont.

      • Emile’sGhost

        You might want to get a better grasp of English.

  • n_a_v

    How about combining G+ photos, Picassa, Snapseed, and the Android gallery photo editor. Too much to ask?

    And one of these graphics from AP:

    • http://petercast.net Peterson Silva

      And people complain about the quantity of messaging apps. What a mess for photos too!

    • BruceWillisThrowsACar@You

      Before they do that, they have to ACTUALLY provide the features that Photos currently doesn't have, like a proper Default Device view of ur photos, (that doesn't show photos in the wrong folders) and explicit management of backed up folders, instead of ALL THE TINGS.

      • duse

        Or how about the ability to view a picture truly full-screen instead of with the stupid status bar still there. G+ Photos STILL doesn't do this.

        • BruceWillisThrowsACar@You

          Yep, only just noticed since I try to avoid using it.

      • Nathan Walters

        If you want explicit folder management, go to "On Device" then click the cloud icon on the right side of each folder header to toggle backup on and off.

        • Andy Williams

          I create a .nomedia file in every directory on my sdcard except the camera folder. There are a few apps that do that quickly

    • mgamerz

      I love how on stock Nexus 5 when you open a photo it asks you what viewer you want to use. That's pretty shitty if you're shipping a phone that you don't even know what you want the default editor to be (Photos, Gallery)

      • duse

        Yeah, makes me laugh every time. It comes off looking like a confusing POS to the average consumer.

        • tleaf100

          thats because it is an pos.

      • CoreRooted

        The reason for that is because most manufacturers provide [a] Gallery. Until Photos does get decoupled, Google has to support both G+ and non-G+ users.

        • mgamerz

          Doesn't photos work without a G+ account?

          • CoreRooted

            TBH, I have no idea. I never tried it with a non-G+ account.

          • mgamerz

            I kinda like it. I've been using it a lot the last few days as I migrate my auto photo backup to Google from Dropbox. I guess its Google+ doing the cool stuff with stories and auto awesome but the design is better than Gallery.

          • CoreRooted

            Personally, I have always hated the AOSP Gallery. Photos at least looks like something designed past GB. LOL I'm not a big picture person to begin with, so backing up to drive/G+ has always been a set it and forget it thing for me. I just started messing around with the Plex Cloud backup & sync though.

          • mgamerz

            I'm using an app called FolderSync. A bit of work getting setup but the flexibility and options it has are impressive. Kinda like tasker.

          • CoreRooted

            I saw that... I actually thought about just setting up a Tasker profile to handle it, but meh. If I take 5 photos in a week, that's a lot for me. lol

          • Jeremy Young

            The design? I'm still undecided on that because there's actually no way to sort the photos on Google Photos. It's just a mess of a layout.

          • mgamerz

            That's what I meant.

    • miri

      Stock gallery has been [demoted] to AOSP and no longer ships with Google devices, Picassa, G+ Photos and Snapseed have already been merged.

      • blindexecutioner

        Yep, I have to side load gallery now because I hate Google+ and photos goes with it when I delete it.

      • tleaf100

        if you believe google,picasa was de-merged over a year ago.

      • Fatal1ty_93_RUS

        Uh, no, stock Gallery app is still there even in 4.4.4. In L they did not include it though

        • miri

          If you have a nexus, then you'll still have the stock gallery. GPE devices don't have it and future Nexus devices likely won't ship with it either.

  • http://petercast.net Peterson Silva

    Google should just forget the + branding and make the service invisible... You know, integrate all the features and just let Google+ become Google!

    • Shining Wing

      Then what do you call the social network?

      • http://petercast.net Peterson Silva

        Nothing. When Google+ becomes Google, Google becomes Google+. Imagine Google's front page with Now Cards... Start scrolling / swiping down and oh, there they are, the things your friends are sharing with you =D

        Well that's one idea... They could call it Google Social or Google Circles or Google Stream... I don't know.

        • Shining Wing

          To be fair, those are all better names than Google+. :P

          • http://petercast.net Peterson Silva

            They are, aren't they?
            But I really wish Google+ becomes just Google, if just for things to come full circle. That was what they said since the beginning: Google+ is just the future of Google. Let the future come already.

    • Kenton Douglas

      That's precisely what's happening.

  • NF

    So Picasa and SnapSeed return.

    • Kenton Douglas

      Not quite

  • MrNinjaPanda

    Google Photos? Nah, it's too simple, they'll probably name it Google Play Photos

    • Bojan Tomic

      You don't buy photos, though, so that's a no-no.
      Play Store is, well a store.

  • mgamerz

    How about you integrate the feature where they sync to drive. You know, like what everyone has pretty much wanted. I doubt anyone wants their photos stuck on Google+ through auto backup.

    • cellabonez

      i think you should check your dash and realise its actually a part of your google drive your photos are synced , i realise that with my info my dashboard

      • mgamerz

        They are counted against your storage quota but you don't see then in Google Drive. They won't sync to your PC unless you manually download them or use a third party app.

  • YouNex

    Doesn't matter

  • Bryan Pizzuti

    Here's an idea, call it Picasa. :)

  • NJrick

    I didn't like the idea of my pics automatically uploading to Google+, plus the fact they were very difficult to email. I changed, or went back to, the Verizon Cloud.

    • Taylor00

      You were never forced to upload your pictures automatically, you just click "continue" without reading what you're being asked.

  • whispy_snippet

    I've said this before and I'll say it again. It would be a dream to see Google (or Adobe) bring a professional grade cloud photo editor to Android and Chrome OS. Google has established a truck load of photography communities on Google+ that are there to fight for with a powerful cloud photo editing product.

    The lack of Adobe Light Room is a big reason why a lot of photographers and photography enthusiasts refuse to jump from a their Macs/PCs to a Chromebook (myself included). Imagine an integrated cloud photo editing service that seamlessly works across Android and Chrome OS. Let's not forget that Android L is set to introduce RAW/DNG support with its new camera API.

    I have my fingers crossed. The pieces could be falling in to place!

    • AbbyZFresh

      Instagram and Flickr is still number 1 and 2 for photographers and consumers. Photos is impressive with its features but it still has yet to gain any mainstream traction.

    • Iacobus

      I'm a little late to this but wanted to mention:

      Adobe developed Lightroom Mobile for iOS and is coming to Android at some point. It's not exactly a one-to-one version of Lightroom for the desktop but it's not meant to be; it's supposed to connect to desktop Lightroom without having to stuff your device with RAW images.

      • whispy_snippet

        Yes indeed. I have heard this and it sounds promising! However, a cloud based RAW editor could/would be a major differentiator. This is what I'd really like to see eventuate. It would give both Android and, more importantly, Chrome OS a lot more value for photographers and enthusiasts.

      • whispy_snippet

        Yes indeed. I have heard this and it sounds promising! However, a cloud based RAW editor could/would be a major differentiator. This is what I'd really like to see eventuate. It would give both Android and, more importantly, Chrome OS a lot more value for photographers and enthusiasts.

  • Anonyguest

    The more decoupling, the better. G+ is to Google what Metro is to Microsoft.

    • AbbyZFresh

      Google criticizes Microsoft for much of the same things Google currently does now. Ironic isn't it.

  • http://byazrov.ru/ Bello Russo

    Everyone hates G+. Google really has to just finish it off.

    • Shining Wing

      What? There's a large amount of active users on it. It doesn't come close to, say, Facebook, but if it's taken away there will be a LOT of unhappy users.

      • http://byazrov.ru/ Bello Russo

        We are all Google+ users because we were given no choice to not to be ones.

        • Shining Wing

          Yeah, about that...

          https://plus.google.com/u/0/settings Look at the bottom.

        • Brian Lippman

          Just because you were "forced" to go to the G+ page and click "ok" to "create" a G+ account, which you already had by having a Google account in the first place, doesn't mean you had to use it. They "forced" people to be aware of G+, but never are you actually "forced" to post or do anything on G+.

          • Shining Wing

            And, as I already told him, he can easily delete his G+ profile if for some reason he made one and doesn't want it.

      • AbbyZFresh

        Those unhappy users are simply anti-Facebook techies who flocked to G+ out of spite. But they are a minority compared the 1 billion users of FB.

        • Shining Wing

          "Those unhappy users are simply anti-Facebook techies who flocked to G+ out of spite"

          I can't vouch for everyone, but I started using G+ because it works better, not out of blind hate.

          "But they are a minority compared the 1 billion users of FB"

          So? G+ still has quite a lot of users. It's not like they don't matter just because there's less of them. That would be like saying that the iPhone shouldn't exist because there's more Android users.

          • AbbyZFresh

            Reader had a lot of users too. Yet Google got rid of it.

          • Shining Wing

            So? It's not like that was a good thing. There were a lot of people who used Reader who were very disappointed when it was shut down. You're basically trying to say that two wrongs make a right.

            Also, G+ currently has 359 million active users (https://econsultancy.com/blog/64319-google-just-35-of-users-are-active), which while it isn't as large as Facebook, it's still a pretty damn big number (and still growing). It's also much larger than Google Reader's number of users (though I can't find exact numbers for Reader, probably because it's not a social network). And, seeing as it's pretty much one of Google's most pushed services, it's highly unlikely that Google will get rid of it any time soon.

            Oh, and by the way, Reader feeds were merged into Currents, so it didn't even completely go away. And being an RSS reader, the alternatives were much more similar to Reader than, say, G+ is to Facebook.

        • cellabonez

          i started using g+ out of the fact it used my info on what i always research and get on my google search and gave me all those pages from the start , plus everything for me is so easy to go through, like android police post and comments. its just simply provides my interest without ads about online dating and more

  • Christopher Bement

    "Fallout"

    Sensationalist title is sensationalist.

  • MaroonRaccoon

    I'm finally getting annoyed with all of this, but maybe it's my fault for following blogs instead of waiting and seeing what actually happens. I really LIKE have my photos automatically backed up, as I back up with Google, OneDrive, and DropBox. Whatever Google does, rebrand, get rid of G+, whatever, just don't screw up me and my family's backed up photos.

    I switched to Android for the coherent ecosystem - and recommend it to friends and family for the same reason, and while things are fine now, posts like these make me think worry about Android's ease of use by this time next year. It sounds like iOS will end up being the more reliable ecosystem in the future, but my reaction might be a little knee jerk due to frustration.

  • dude

    I'll just sideload the original Gallery app if I have to, there is also the CyanogenMod Gallery app. I don't need all that social stuff.

  • Brian Lippman

    Weird, since Google bought (i think) Picasa and kept it around as its own picture thing for a while then basically merged that into G+ to become G+ Photos, and now they're going to spin it back out to its own thing again. Strange life cycle.

    • Kenton Douglas

      Unless Picasa lives on with a new role :) ...

  • Larry Simpson

    "and without the requirement of a Google+ account. Curious indeed." Not really. It'll actually get more users without requiring a G+ account. That's a guarantee. Take it to the bank. Lots of google users have been around since before G+ even began and it's forced usage that are waiting for more to be deintegrated. No doubt in my mind. All you sheople keep believing is getting more users...again...it's forced, they have no say. At least facebook users decide to make their own page...

    • AbbyZFresh

      Most google users don't listen to Google/Android tech news, they only notice the changes when they actually receive the warning directly from Google on the website or the change is already done. The only thing most people know is that Photos is associated with G+. If google wants to gain more users without G+ requirement, they have to issue a clear notification to users that the requirement is gone.

      • Emile’sGhost

        You really are a moron.

  • black

    This should be in the celeb news section.

    Also, I hate Google Photos.

  • Stoffers

    It would be nice if they just moved Photos to Drive and left the 2048px for free. Finally let me manage the photos I accidentally uploaded full size.
    As for G+, I actually love it.

  • Nathan J

    I'm seeing all these people who have actually used Google's Photos app, and I'm reminded of that indigenous tribe found in the amazon when I ask myself, "Didn't we all switch to QuickPic like four years ago?" Along with Contacts+ and WidgetLocker (and toss in your favorite launcher for good measure) QuickPic's existence makes me wonder why people touch the stock equivalent anymore.

    That's the great thing about Android, all these alternatives.

    As far as G+ haters, I don't get it. G+ attempts to improve on Facebook in every way. But if you're afraid of the big bad advertising giant, why not get an iPhone? It's the only phone made by a computer company and the only phone made by the company that makes its software. Google's an advertising company through and through. Android is my choice, but if I had the state of mine of the G+ haters, for the same reasons I wouldn't choose Android. It just seems conflicting.

  • http://bit.ly/breathlesstao Breathless

    I won't even be sorry if this does happen. Photos is easily the most invasive, confusing and downright annoying bit of all things Google on my phone. I just hate it (the way it is as of now).

  • tleaf100

    so they buggered picasa by forcing link to g-
    then they buggered it some more by semi un linking,now picasa will get un usable as google bread heads think of some other half arsed ways to try and skim money out off the system.
    best thing that google could do with g- is shut the mess down,anybody out there know anyone not american that even tries to do anything with/on g-,no neithrr do i,2 folk auto send pics to g- because they have yank mates who have problems getting to proper photo sites.
    picasa worked/works well because its simple,ideal for folk who just want a simple service,plenty of other,much more capable photo/social sites,not many good basic ones.

  • Illutian Kade

    I wouldn't mind seeing Google+ return to being just a 'social media' app. So long as all the other Google Products can be seamlessly integrated into it.

    Google: Everything you need; nothing you don't want.

    ;)

    • Kenton Douglas

      That's exactly where its going. They'll "decouple" hangouts, photos, circles, etc, but at the same time integrate youtube, blogger etc. To be clear: hangouts and photos will become standalone products, but still accessible from g+, while subscribed channels on youtube, authors you follow on blogget, etc, etc will appear in your "stream".

  • Slu76

    I got to this article from Google+ so I am getting a kick out of these replies...

  • Plamen Tonev

    Google decided to drop XMPP, because of Microsoft, acting dumb like a little child. They have decided that nobody outside should be able ever to talk to their newborn shit Hangout. They learn't nothing with pushing Google+. Don't be evil? Well fuck you! Don't push hard if you want some love back. Their gtalk servers have never supported TLS (yes even now - 2014). Two days ago I finally switched my xmpp server from tls_enable to tls_require..so it finally started to talk with other server only by encrypted channel...like it always should be. Guess which contacts only disappeared from my messenger contact list. Gtalk of course. So much fuss about 'hey we are going to encrypt their datacenters communications, cables in the ocean, so NSA can't spy on us...bla bla.....and after this PR talk what ? Gtalk doesn't use even older SSL....for messages between servers...and no, it's not a bug, they do this deliberately...for so many years...

  • Mike

    I think Google Photos will eventually replace the Gallery app in Android.

    • Leo

      Already did...

    • Simon Belmont

      Already does on GPe devices. Though, it didn't on my Nexus 5, but I think that's because it came with KitKat by default.

      I actually still use the Gallery app for a lot of stuff like cropping because I find it faster to use than the Photos app for that. But, I have nothing against the Photos app, per se.

  • Jeremy Young

    It seems form all the comments on here that Google+ actually stuffed up the Google world more than it did any good.

    • Kenton Douglas

      Nah, if you look closely at some of these "comments", you'll recognise paid trolls, which in fact tells you someone in techland is worried.

  • Adrian Meredith

    I doubt this is true somehow, sharing of photos is critical to the experience. Without g+ integration photos will be pretty poor.

    • Kenton Douglas

      That function will still be there. This is a about perception/branding/clarity for those users who (for whatever reason) seem to be confused about g+

  • MikeOxlong

    Sounds good to me. The photos app is actually quite decent for a first party editor and viewer if debloated from this garbage.

  • shonangreg

    Great! Maybe the photo backup can be turned off then.

    After finding photos backed up that I didn't want, I turned off auto-backup in the photos app. The photos continued to be backed up. So, I went into device Settings -- Accounts -- Google and turned off everything google+ and photo backup (on both my N7 and my S5), and then they keep getting turned back on again! (about once a week on average) I cannot turn off google auto-photos backup! And it is eating my battery and data allowance.

    And since this is happening on two different devices, I'm sure it is a widespread problem. If you don't believe me, try it. Turn off google+ syncing and photos backup in your Settings -- Accounts and then look again in a week or two. I've been watching this continue for a couple of months now. I even have screen caps if anyone doubts me (though that could be easily faked...)

  • Moosa Mahsoom

    Might be a good idea to drop Google+ branding and integrate it even more closely with Google. For example, Google Social

  • Simon Belmont

    Can't say I'd have a problem with this. Then one could technically cast their uploaded photos to their TV without needing a G+ account (not that I'm against having one, mind you).

    Basically, separating this out makes it more flexible, IMO. You get the photo syncing without having it tied to G+, which makes more sense to me, in the long run. Also, the Photos app can be updated independently of G+, so we could theoretically get faster updates to it. More features, quicker, etc.

  • didibus

    Yes finally. Google+ screwed up by getting everyone confused about a second account on top of your Google account. Hangouts and Photos and YouTube should be kept tied to your Google account only, not your G+ account.

    I'm happy about all this. First Google says you don't have to use your real name anymore. Now they say that Photos might be untied from G+ I love it.

    And to all the G+ fans, I'd probably use G+ even more if it was kept more seperated. There's a certain fear that you accidentally share pics that are auto backed up that shouldn't be shared. That fear would go away for example.

  • Eternith

    I just want to be able to make public sharable links with people for individual photos, similar to Dropbox.

  • qriusme

    I'm still waiting for the ability to just create an album manually myself. Seems so simple, but hasn't been done!

  • Jesús Cuenca

    If google photos can organize my photos in Drive and properly in folders

  • Pascal

    I don't know what everybody has against g+.

  • tleaf100

    yeah so what.i dont care what you think.
    tell me again in a decade how good google are,
    if they exist.
    the only thing they do half properly is a search engine,one day someone will come up with a better,even more profitable search system.
    then its all down hill for a one trick pony,you may be ablento cope with half arsed short life products,industry/enterprise will not.
    the public can/will use crap,others will not and others just do not dare to to try.
    one trick ponies have a habit of failing big time.

    • Colin Richardson

      Yeah, I completely agree with tleaf100, Android is only on like what, 1 phone in the entire world with ZERO market share. Noone has been to YouTube in like 3 years I don't think anyone posts videos anymore. And that Maps thing, what a laugh, so what if I can see images of almost every street in the first world. It's not REAL TIME images and cannot plot my position down to the picometer, so it's not useful in the slightest.

      - Colin.

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