Every time I open the wallpaper picker on my phone, I wonder why it doesn't let me choose a local folder or a Google Photos album as a source of pics to cycle through on my homescreen. While that functionality has yet to be added, a new integration between Photos and Android's wallpapers is live now, but it only takes input from your Memories, leaving you at the mercy of Photos' AI algorithm and what it deemed worthy of being a "Memory."

The option was added in version 5.22 of Google Photos. Once installed, you don't need to open Photos. Just go to your phone's wallpaper picker — the screenshots below are taken on a Pixel 4XL, but it should work on any Android device — and look for the live wallpapers option. A new one called Memories should be available.

Picking that will let your preview and cycle through the different memory images from Google Photos before applying it. As you can see below, what you get is anyone's guess. If you took an image of a sofa inside a store four years ago, you might see that. If you cooked some apples a year ago, you could get that as well. It's all the random stuff that Photos' Memories section throws at you.

Sure, you may be able to avoid this mess if you only take nice pics and/or archive the random and unnecessary ones, but I doubt everyone does that. That means on most days, when there's no specific yearly event (birthday, holiday) where you'd have lots of cool and significant pics, you can't really predict what Photos' AI will grace your homescreen with. It could be a fun image, it could also be a pic of your ex, dead relative, or a meaningless photo of a document or thing.

If you're feeling adventurous enough to try this, you can grab Photos v5.22.0.344 from APK Mirror and try it out. I'll wait until I can pick my favorites or a specific album or person to give it a real go.


With another update to v5.22.0.345, Photos has removed this live wallpaper option. It's likely that the feature went live a little prematurely and will be back in a future update.

Google Photos
Google Photos
Developer: Google LLC
Price: Free