Google's hardware event just wrapped up, and to nobody's surprise, its newest Pixel phones are pricey, starting at $799. That price is all the harder to swallow thanks to a new detail: the phones won't come with free original quality photo storage in Google Photos, a feature that's been a selling point of the hardware line since the very first Pixel phone.

The Pixel 4's product page notes that users get "unlimited storage in high quality on Google Photos." Previous Pixel devices touted backups in original quality, not high quality. The fine print at the bottom of the page confirms the change:

Google Photos offers free unlimited online storage for all photos and videos uploaded in high quality. Photos and videos uploaded in high quality may be compressed or resized. Requires Google Account. Data rates may apply.

The Pixel 3a and 3a XL similarly don't come with free full quality storage, but those devices are also much less expensive. Considering the Pixel 4 and 4 XL's high prices and Google's continued focus on their mobile photography prowess, it's a real shame the longstanding perk is no longer available.


  • Thanks:
  • Austin Greenlee