How to choose a photo storage service

How to choose a photo storage service

How to choose a photo storage service

Final November, Google — which till now has provided limitless storage for “prime quality” (learn: compressed) images — introduced that “limitless” is being modified to “up to 15GB in your Google account.” In different phrases, whereas photo and video storage at present doesn’t rely in opposition to your complete of 15 free gigs on a Google account, it can as of this coming June 1st — alongside together with your Gmail, Google Drive information, and different saved information. When you hit that 15GB wall, you should have to purchase into the Google One service to enhance your storage capability. (Until you personal a Pixel, by which case you continue to haven’t any limits on “prime quality” images.)

If you happen to’re a Google Pictures person who finds all of this a bit irritating, you could be considering of leaving. However first, it’s a good concept to try your alternate options. Under are a number of the major photo storage companies out there to you, together with their fundamental charges, so you possibly can determine whether or not you need to change. (Observe: We’ve solely included companies which can be particularly geared towards images, no more common storage companies equivalent to OneDrive or Dropbox.)

Google Photos

Google Pictures

Google supplies every of its accounts with 15GB of free storage. Nonetheless, for the previous few years, images have been handled otherwise: below its “prime quality” plan, Google saved a limiteless variety of images totally free so long as you permit them to be compressed to 16 megapixels. (In accordance to Google, images that measurement could be printed with out difficulty up to 24 x 16 inches.) Movies have been saved to a most of 1080p. (Knowledge equivalent to closed captions could possibly be eradicated to save house.) “Authentic high quality” images — those who weren’t compressed — weren’t a part of this limitless plan however have been counted as common information.

Nonetheless, all of that’s altering. As talked about above, beginning on June 1st, 2021, Google might be together with images in its storage calculations. When you hit that 15GB ceiling, you should have to purchase into the Google One service for added storage house.

Google One at present begins at 100GB of storage for $1.99 a month ($19.99 a 12 months) and proceeds to 200GB for $2.99 a month ($29.99 a 12 months) or 2TB for $9.99 a month ($99.99 a 12 months). The 2TB plan additionally comes with a VPN for Android telephones.

Earlier than you run to put money into Google One, bear in mind that there are a number of mitigating components Google is providing its customers. When the brand new plan goes into impact, that’s when the clock begins; images you uploaded earlier than then gained’t rely towards your 15GB restrict. Additionally, in case you’re a Pixel proprietor, then you possibly can proceed to add high-quality images with out affecting your 15GB restrict. (In fact, Pixel homeowners used to get limitless unique high quality totally free, reasonably than having to add their images in “prime quality.” However hey, it’s one thing.)

iCloud Photos

iCloud Pictures

If you happen to’re a part of Apple’s ecosystem, then you could have easy accessibility to iCloud Pictures, Apple’s equal to Google Pictures. iCloud Pictures is linked to the Telephone app in your Mac or iOS machine as a backup on your images. You mechanically get 5GB of storage house related together with your iCloud account; after that, it prices 99 cents per 30 days for 50GB, $2.99 per 30 days for 200GB, and $9.99 per 30 days for 2TB. (That is for the US; different nations have totally different charges.) Home windows customers can even entry iCloud Pictures by way of an related app; Android customers could have to entry it utilizing a browser.

Flickr page


Flickr has a free plan as properly, nevertheless it’s restricted to 1,000 images — inside sure pointers: photo information are restricted to 200MB and video information to 1GB. For limitless storage with out adverts, you pay both $6.99 a month or $59.99 yearly (plus tax). Different benefits to a paid annual membership embody stats about which of your images are trending and a number of reductions from a number of corporations, together with Adobe and SmugMug (which is now a part of Flickr).


Photo: SmugMug

Talking of SmugMug, this long-lasting service can be out there, providing storage, portfolios, and gross sales alternatives for professionals. For $55 a 12 months or $7 a month, you get limitless uploads and a customizable web site. The Energy plan ($85 a 12 months or $11 month-to-month) provides web site customization and your individual area title. If you happen to’re wanting to be a skilled photographer, the Portfolio plan provides e-commerce options for $200 a 12 months or $27 a month (you retain 85 % of the markup). And at last, the Professional plan allows you to create occasions, tariffs, and branded orders, amongst different options, for $360 a 12 months or $42 a month. If you happen to’re involved in attempting it out, you will get a two-week trial.


Photo: 500px

Canadian firm 500px is definitely extra for skilled photographers than your common snap-and-save image taker. It provides professionals a place to retailer, exhibit, and license their work. So when you have ambitions to begin peddling your images, 500px could also be value testing.

The location provides two paid plans. The primary, modestly named Superior, provides limitless uploads, precedence help, no adverts, a historical past of “preferred” images, gallery slideshows, and a profile badge for $59.88 a 12 months or $4.99 month-to-month. The Professional plan provides a manner to show your companies and group instruments for $119.88 a 12 months or $9.99 month-to-month. (You get a low cost in your first 12 months: Superior prices $47.88 a 12 months or $3.99 month-to-month, whereas Professional goes for $71.88 a 12 months or $5.99 month-to-month.) And in order for you to make a bit of cash, you possibly can submit your images to be licensed for inventory utilization by way of 500px.

There may be a free ad-supported plan that offers you seven uploads a week. While you enroll, you possibly can check out the Professional plan for 2 weeks earlier than committing your self.



Photobucket provides a restricted free plan, permitting you to add up to 250 images totally free — extra a trial plan than the rest. If you happen to like what you see, you can begin with the Newbie plan at $5.99 per 30 days or $64.68 yearly, which supplies you 25GB of storage, together with no adverts, password-protected album sharing, and a picture editor. For $7.99 per 30 days or $86.28 yearly, the Intermediate plan supplies 250GB of storage and limitless picture internet hosting. Lastly, for $12.99 per 30 days or $140.28 yearly, the Professional plan provides limitless storage and no picture compression, amongst different extras.



DeviantArt calls itself “the world’s largest artwork group” with a social community for visible artists of all types. It provides guests a wide selection of artist galleries to view, divided into classes equivalent to conventional, animation, and illustrations. DeviantArt (or DA for brief) even has its personal publishing platform known as — emphasizing the truth that this web site, like 500px, is much less for easy storage and extra for displaying (and promoting) your artwork.

With a free membership in DeviantArt, there aren’t any restrictions on how a lot you add for public entry, and also you get admission to DA’s group of artists and artwork lovers. Core Members take pleasure in extra perks. For $3.95 a month or $39.95 a 12 months, you get to promote your artwork with no service payment (however a 20 % payment on Premium Gallery & Premium obtain gross sales) and a $100 max value per digital merchandise, together with 20GB of personal storage house in For $7.95 a month or $79.95 a 12 months, you possibly can cost up to $1,000 per merchandise and pay a 12 % payment on Premium Gallery & Premium obtain gross sales, together with 30GB of personal storage. Lastly, $14.95 a month or $149.95 a 12 months allows you to cost up to $10,000 per merchandise, lowers your payment to 10 % payment per sale, and will get you 50GB of storage.

Amazon Photos

Amazon Pictures

Amazon supplies its Prime members with a seize bag of extras together with the free delivery. As well as to the video choices, music streaming, and different goodies, you get limitless photo storage for $119 a 12 months.

A pleasant perk is which you can share that limitless storage with 5 associates or relations in what known as the Household Vault. The whole lot there may be accessible to everybody who shares the Vault. “Limitless,” by the best way, doesn’t embody movies or different information; for these, Prime members get 5GB of storage, and after that, there may be a lengthy listing of storage plans out there ranging from $1.99 a month for 100GB.

That’s one thing to take into accout in case you drop your Prime membership. In that case, in accordance to the Amazon directions, “the limitless photo storage advantages related to the membership finish. All uploaded images rely towards your Amazon Drive storage restrict.” The whole storage for non-Prime members (stills and video) is 5GB.

Replace November twelfth, 4:55PM ET: This text has been up to date to embody SmugMug and to clarify that it solely covers photo-specific companies.

Replace November sixteenth, 10:30AM ET: Up to date to add iCloud Pictures and to replace the costs and screenshot for 500px.

Replace Might eleventh, 2021, 1:10PM ET: A number of costs and screenshots up to date.

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