Google Photos has over a billion users worldwide, but it’s far from perfect. Now Google has announced some long-awaited features that will make it easier to use and more secure.
In its most recent announcement, Google Photos is introducing a new, safer way to share your photo albums without risking them falling into the wrong hands.
Since the update, you can now share an album directly with specific people without having to create a public share link first. This simplifies sharing albums while giving you greater control over who can view your images.
Google’s new default sharing method mirrors the recently introduced private conversation-based sharing feature for single images. Individual recipients can be invited to view albums directly through their Google accounts. No public links are created, and you can revoke access to people at any time, removing any photos and videos they may have added to the album.
At first glance, this might seem like just a convenience feature, but it’s actually extremely important for the protection of Google Photos users.
Previously, sharing an album on Google Photos required sending a public link that would open the album when clicked. Unfortunately, this method grants full, password-free access to your album to anyone with this link. If the link fell into the wrong hands, it is possible that complete strangers could then view your album without your knowledge. It is also impossible to revoke an individual’s access once they have the link. The only option being to turn off the sharing link completely, locking everyone out of the album until you reshare it.
Public links have their place, however, and you can still use them as before if you want. You will need it if, for example, you really want to make an album available to the public. They’re also especially useful for inviting people who don’t have a Google account or if you need to share through other methods like messaging or messaging apps.
The new album sharing feature is being rolled out.