Google Photos: How to download and export photos, videos to your PC
Last week, Google ended the free unlimited storage for users globally. Starting June 1, 2021, you will need to pay to use Google Photos once the free 15GB storage cap is over.
If you have been using Google Photos for years and want to continue to use the service for free, backup all your data today and create some space.
To backup your photo and videos from Google Photos to your personal laptop, mobile phone, or tablet you will need to use Google Takeout.
Google offers a tool called Takeout that is intended to let you easily take all your content and copy to your computer’s hard drive. The problem with takeout is that the resulting .zip files are very difficult to navigate. Selecting photos/videos using Google Photos and downloading to your computer is easy and effective. Select by clicking on the first photo, then shift-click on the last in a group. Click the 3-dot menu and choose Download all. Problem – you are limited to 500 per download in this procedure.
But, if you first add photos to an album, that 500 limit becomes 20,000. Once photos are in an album you can open the album, click the 3-dot menu and Download all.
Download a photos album on the web:
- Click on ‘Albums’ in the left menu.
- Select the album you want to share.
- Click on the three dots in the upper right corner and select ‘Download all.’
- Google will then download a zip file containing the photos from your album.
Download multiple photo albums
- You can also download multiple albums (or all your albums) by using Google Takeout, which lets you export data being held in your Google Account:
- Go to the ‘Download your data’ page of your account
- Click on ‘Deselect all’ (because this page automatically checks every Google service you use)
- Page down to Google Photos and select it by clicking on the check box
- Click on the button that says ‘All photo albums included’
- Again, click on ‘Deselect all’ and then check the boxes of those albums you do want to download
How to download an album using mobile photos app
You can’t. There are, however, a couple of workarounds that you can use.
For example, you can use Google Takeout using your mobile device’s browser and the steps listed above.
You can also share the photos within the album to email or Google Drive, and then download them from there.
1. In the Photos app, select Albums from the bottom of the screen.
2. Tap on the album you want to download.
3. Press and hold onto the first photo until you see a check in the box in the upper left corner of the photo.
4. Then drag your finger down until all the photos in the album are checked.
5. Tap on the ‘share’ icon on the top right of the screen.
6. From here, you can either email the photos to yourself or save them to Google Drive and download them from there.