Google+ picture story timelines are a combination of several Google features that automate editing and place photos in context with time and location. The animated, multimedia picture stories just occur without any user interaction.
For about a year, I have been taking advantage of free cloud storage for my smartphone photos as I take them via the G+ app, while watching G+ create automated creations from the backed up photos.
Weekend in New York, A STORY BY Paul Kuehnel appeared in my G+ notifications Monday after a three day weekend in New York City. I haven’t edited it so that you can see how Google edited it.
To make automatic story/video timelines happen, several free Google functions need to be in place. Google+ auto backup has to be turned on as well as location services on your handset. You have to opt into timeline stories when prompted in the G+ app.
Android handsets will more likely have G+ (play link) installed by default, but it appears to work the same way in iOS after installing the app (although I haven’t used my ipod to shoot photos). G+ will also combine pictures from multiple devices if they are logged in with the same Gmail account.
Activate G+ Auto Backup in the Settings of the G+ app on your smartphone. There are several settings to keep in mind.
In options in Auto Backup: Limit photo backup size to 2048 px backups (free option). You can backup photos from your smartphone at full size, but on my 10 MP Moto X that means a 4320 x 2432 huge image. Anything over the 2048 option will count against my total free Drive/Gmail storage of 15 gig.
Next, limit when the photos backup. If you have unlimited data or shooting in a high risk situation you may want to switch back to uploading in real-time over your wireless data plan. Otherwise, you can choose to backup handset photos ONLY when on Wifi, adding only when plugged in (Android) if you are in daily battery conservation mode.
You can choose not to back up videos. Backing up videos (huge files!) will deduct from your total Google storage, like large still images. I allow videos to backup and then clear out in a month or so. Deleting photos/videos from the cloud archive gallery on your smartphone will hold them in a deleted folder that you can retrieve, unlike deleting from the smartphone gallery (that displays what is in the physical memory of the handset). Continue reading “Google+ Automated picture story timelines” »