By Nicky / Last Updated September 14, 2020

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Which is Best Cloud Storage for Your Photos?

Nowadays, no matter smartphone, DSLR camera, tablet, desktop PC, or Mac laptop, are crammed with photos. Users are all drowning in data and fear that a device will get lost or hard drive fail. In this case, uploading all of your photos to one easy-to-use online cloud photo storage is a good choice. But many users are confused about how to choose a suitable cloud storage for photos.

Actually, choosing a good cloud storage platform doesn't mean only photo editing, sorting or physical backup. However, some platforms do now involve some semblance of automation, with geotags and metadata used to group together photos by location, date taken, who's in them (using facial recognition), and the camera or device with which they were taken.

Given the above criteria, Google Photos and Flickr may be the most suitable cloud storage for your photos and videos. Because they all have their own advantages and unique features, you may need to learn the basic information about Google Photos and Flickr and compare them from different aspects to choose the one that suits you best.

Overview of Google Photos and Flickr

Google Photos

Google Photos

Google Photos is a photo-sharing and storage service developed by Google, which was announced in May 2015 and separated from Google +. It’s quick to get started and simple to use especially when you already have a Google account.

Google Photos will automatically upload and backup every photo you ever take on a smartphone (when it's on Wi-Fi) and extract every image it finds on your computers. Meanwhile, this service has apps for the Android and iOS operating system, and a website. Users can back up their photos to the cloud service and access them from all of their devices.

Flickr

Flickr

Flickr has been around for a long time and used to be known as one of the best online image hosting and video hosting service. It has changed ownership several times and has been owned by SmugMug since April 20, 2018.

You can access photos and videos from Flickr without registering an account, but you must register an account to upload content to the website. After registering an account, a user can also create a profile page that contains photos and videos uploaded by the user, and can also add another Flickr user as a contact. For mobile users, Flickr has official mobile apps for iOS, Android, and an optimized mobile site.

Google Photos Vs Flickr: Storage Capacity

Google Photos

Google Photos Offers free unlimited online photo storage through its Google Photos site as long as you agree with its restrictions on image quality. That means it will downscale the photos to 16MP versions, and reduce any 4K videos it finds to Full HD 1080p quality. If you want to store the original quality, you get 15GB for free, 100GB for $1.99/month, 1TB for $9.99/month, and 10TB for $99.99/month.

Flickr

Flickr Offers the storage of 1000 photos and videos for free. However, the limit is based on the number of photos, as opposed to storage capacity, which means you can upload your images in their full, uncompressed glory—without worrying about saving space. And if the 1,000 photo limit is too low for you, you can upgrade to Flickr Pro to get unlimited storage for $50 per year.

Google Photos Vs Flickr: Uploading and Downloading

Google Photos

Google Photos offers desktop uploader and mobile apps that allow you to automatically upload photos and videos. Meanwhile, Google Photos’ desktop uploader has many useful options, such as automatically uploading photos and videos from external media, uploading RAW files, and choosing between standard and full photo resolution.

The mobile apps’ settings also include features like removing your geolocation from photos that you share, auto-grouping photos by facial recognition, and selecting specific folders on your phone to back up.

Flickr

Flickr’s uploaders are more basic, which is simple but slow. On the desktop, you can select the folders you want and let it do its thing. On mobile, your options are to use Wi-Fi only or cellular/Wi-Fi.

If you want to download photos from the Flickr account, then you have the option to download individual albums as a zipped file. It does not have "Download All" option. In addition, selecting multiple photos on Flickr is a little complex and it lacks "Select All" feature.

Google Photos Vs Flickr: Photo Sharing

Google Photos

You can quickly select and share a photo, group of photos, or album to Google+, Facebook, or Twitter, or get a link to share via email or elsewhere. Google Photos also shows a list of the links you’ve shared so you can re-share or delete the link, but otherwise, there’s not much else to do here when it comes to sharing.

Flickr

Besides shareable link for photos and albums, Flickr lets you control groups of people who can view your photos, and enables others with access to comment on your photos, star them, and follow you to get updates on your photo uploads.

You can share your photos to Facebook, Twitter, and Tumbler, and also connect Flickr to third-party apps to get more out of your account. You can set the attribution rights to your photos and see how many views they’ve gotten.

Google Photos Vs Flickr: Online Editing Tools

Google Photos

Fine editing controls for the most basic functions like slider adjustments for light, color, pop, vignettes, cropping, and filters, as well as a simple but handy auto-enhancement option.

Flickr

More advanced editing options. Besides the usual filters and brightness controls, you can add stickers or text and drawing overlays to photos, quickly whiten teeth and fix red-eye photos, adjust warmth, fine-tune focus, and more.

Google Photos Vs Flickr: Organization and Unique Features

Google Photos

Smart search, intelligent photo recognition, and automatic albums are outstanding advantages of Google Photos. Google Photos is great at searching for your photos by typing keywords that related to the photo you are looking for.

Furthermore, the computer vision of Google Photos recognizes faces (not only those of humans but for pets as well). What’s more. Google also automatically categorizes your photos into People, Places, and Things.

Unfortunately, however, Google Photos doesn’t preserve your file folder structure. So if you organize your photos meticulously by year and month or with specific folder names on your computer, you won’t find that mirrored in Google Photos. It just flattens everything into one huge “folder” online.

Flickr

What makes Flickr stand out is its ability to display your photos in an attractive photostream. Other users can follow your activity and comment on your shots, or you can make images private, making it a real social network for amateur and professional photographers alike. You can also easily add tags to photos and associate photos with other Flickr users.

Besides that, Flickr also recently added an automatic categorizing feature, grouping your photos by subject. It tells you the number of photos in each category, shows you the privacy settings at a glance (lets you change them in one click), and allows you to sort by date taken, date uploaded, and privacy setting.

Moreover, Flickr also preserves your local folder structure in the Albums view, which makes it easier to browse photos if you have a specific way of organizing them. However, it isn’t as smart in searching.

Conclusion

So, Google Photos vs Flickr, who's the winner here? It depends on your needs. If you need to have photos stored at above 16-megapixel quality, Flickr cloud be the better choice for you. If photo and video compression is not a problem for you, and you just want to enjoy unlimited storage for free, Google Photos is undoubtedly the best choice.