It’s hard to believe, but Facebook debuted all the way back in 2004, four years before the first Android phone hit the market. If you were one of the early Facebook adopters, chances are you’ve uploaded a complete library of photos that exist only on the social media platform. But thanks to Facebook’s new photo and video migration tool (well, new to the US), you can now easily copy these precious images over to Google Photos for safekeeping.

What is the Facebook photo and video migration tool?

Facebook's photo and video migration tool is a product of the Data Transfer Project, a joint initiative between Microsoft, Twitter, Facebook, and more that promises greater portability of data between services. After debuting in Ireland back in December 2019, Facebook's photo and video migration tool finally came to the United States and Canada in April 2020.

The tool is fairly straight forward in terms of functionality. In five simple steps, users can copy their entire Facebook photo or video library over to Google Photos, no special hacks or software necessary. The social media giant has promised that more photo services will be supported in the future, though Google Photos is the first one out of the gate. Here's how to make it happen:

Step 1: Open Facebook Settings

You can easily access Facebook's photo and video migration tool from within the Facebook app on your phone. Simply launch the app, tap on the hamburger menu in the top right corner of your screen, scroll down to the bottom of the page, and click on "Settings."

Step 2: Transfer a copy of your photos or videos

Halfway down the page, you'll see the heading "Your Facebook Information." At the bottom of this section, you'll want to tap "Transfer a Copy of your Photos or Videos."

Step 3: Enter Facebook password

To ensure you are the person transferring your photos or videos, Facebook requires users to input their Facebook password. If for any reason you've forgotten or misplaced your Facebook password, you can click on the "Forgot Password?" prompt below the password box to start the recovery process.

Step 4: Choose a destination

Next, you'll need to choose a destination for your images. Right now, Google Photos is the only service that works with Facebook's photo and video migration tool, though more will be added in the future.

You will also need to choose if you want to migrate your photos or videos first. Keep in mind that they cannot be transferred at the same time; you will need to repeat this process if you want to migrate all of your Facebook media to Google Photos.

Finally, once you select "Next," you will need to grant Facebook permission to add content to your Google Photos account.

Step 5: Confirm transfer

Lastly, tap on "Confirm Transfer" to begin the migration process. It will take the service a bit of time to transfer your images over and get them uploaded to Google Photos, especially if you have a larger library.

After the process is complete, you will now find a series of new albums within Google Photos, all starting with "Copy of ..." These will correspond directly with the names of your photo albums on Facebook.

Universal platform compatibility

The best part about Facebook’s photo and video migration tool is that it’s compatible with all devices and operating systems. Although this article focused on the Android experience, these same steps can be carried out on an iOS device and on Facebook.com via a web browser. That means regardless of which platform or device you’re using, you can safely move your entire Facebook photo and video library to Google Photos in minutes.