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How to use Google Photos to back up your photos and videos

Google Photos logo on a OnePlus 6
Google Photos logo on a OnePlus 6 (Image credit: Joe Maring / Android Central)

Whether you're a pro photographer or just enjoy snapping photos with your phone, Google Photos is a must. It's one of the best services Google currently offers and is a great way to save your pictures and videos in the cloud, access them from all of your devices, and keep them with high-quality backups. If you need some help getting started with Google Photos, you've come to the right place.

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How to set up Google Photos

If you're just opening Google Photos on your phone for the first time, this is the initial setup process you'll go through.

  1. Open Google Photos.
  2. Sign in to your Google account.
  3. Choose Desired quality settings.
  4. Wait for your photos to sync.Source: Joe Maring / Android Central

How to choose device folders

After getting logged into Google Photos, it's time to choose which folders on your phone you wanted backed up to the service. Here's how to do it.

  1. Open Google Photos.
  2. Tap the overflow icon (the one with three lines at the upper-left of your screen).
  3. Tap Settings.
  4. Tap Back up & sync.Source: Joe Maring / Android Central

  1. Tap Back up device folders.
  2. Toggle the folders you want to be backed up.Source: Joe Maring / Android Central

How to change image quality

Last but certainly not least, it's important to choose the quality of image backups you want for Google Photos. You can save an unlimited number of pictures if you save them in "high quality" mode which is a lower resolution than what they were originally captured in but still look great. Alternatively, you can choose to save the original full resolution images. Doing this will count those backups towards your available Google Drive storage.

  1. Open Google Photos.
  2. Tap the overflow icon (the one with three lines at the upper-left of your screen).
  3. Tap Settings.
  4. Tap Back up & sync.Source: Joe Maring / Android Central

  1. Tap Upload Size.
  2. Tap the image quality you want.Source: Joe Maring / Android Central

There you have it. With those few things out of the way, you're now ready to start using Google Photos like a champ!

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Joe Maring was a Senior Editor for Android Central between 2017 and 2021. You can reach him on Twitter at @JoeMaring1.