Set up Google+ Photo Auto Backup on Android the Right Way

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Young couple taking a selfie by victorsaboya via shutterstock.

Ever since I lost more than a thousand photographs the day my HTC One went numb, I have been using Dropbox’s auto upload feature just to make sure that all my captured moments are preserved forever. However, with Google+ coming out with features like auto awesome and stories, it was a bit tough to ignore the temptation to switch over.

So here’s a small guide I created about the right way to set up the Google+ auto backup feature on Android if you are planning on using it as your auto backup tool.

Must Read: 8 Excellent Ways to Auto-Back Up Your Phone Photos

Enable Auto Backup

To enable the auto backup feature you must have the Google+ app installed on your device. The app can be downloaded from the Play Store and you need to have Google+ activated with your Google account to access the app. After you download and log in to the app, tap the three dotted menu on the top right corner and select the Settings option.

Google Auto Backup 1

Under the app settings, select Auto Backup and turn on the feature. If you have multiple Google accounts linked to the Google+ app, it will ask which account you want to use to back up your photos along with the total amount of space left on the drive.

Google Auto Backup 3
Google Auto Backup 2

So once you’ve turned on the auto backup feature, the next thing you should configure is how often the photos are backed up. In the backup settings, select the option Back up photos only when Wi-Fi connection is available if you don’t have an unlimited data plan.

You can also choose to upload the photos only while the phone is charging to save your battery from the background processes. If you don’t mind a little delay in your photo syncing, this is the ideal option.

Google Auto Backup 5

Backed Up Photo Size

You might be aware that each Google user has 15 GB of storage space, which includes all the data you store, even files in Drive and attachments in your inbox.

However, when it comes to photos, anything bigger than 2048×2048 pixels uses your storage. Everything smaller than that is free. So if you don’t want to fill up your storage space with just your photos, you can select the Standard size in the options. This option will resize the photos to 2048×2048, which is pretty decent, but will also not take up additional space.

Google Auto Backup 4

If you don’t want to compromise on the photo quality, you can select the full size backup. But don’t forget to buy additional storage space when you run out of the initial 15 gigs.

Choose Selective Folders

When it comes to photos on an Android device, there are many ways you can fill up your gallery. We have photos we download from the web, plenty of screenshots we take, and don’t forget those forwarded WhatsApp memes. If you don’t want everything to be backed up to the cloud, you can select specific folders you would like to sync to Google+.

When you install Google+ on your Android device, an additional app called Photos comes bundled with it. Open this app and you will see all the photos you have on your drive and the device. Now select the option On Device from the left side bar and you will be able to see all the individual photo folders on your device.

Google Auto Backup 6
Google Auto Backup 7

Next to each folder there will be a cloud icon. Using this, you can select which photos will be uploaded. A blue icon means that the photos in the folder will be uploaded and a grey one means the opposite.

Another must read: Don’t forget to check out 7 Must-Know Google+ Photo Tips.


Remember to enable the auto backup feature this holiday season so that all your captured moments will be saved. Also your photos will get Google’s ‘Awesome touch’, which will automatically create story albums that you can easily share with your friends on Google and Facebook.

Last updated on 03 February, 2022

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