Apple Photos vs. Google Photos

“With rapidly expanding image and video collections, three things are hot on everyone’s wish list: constant and automatic backups to an offsite location, having your entire image and video library available on all your devices, and having the edits you make to an image on one device show up on your other devices,” Lesa Snider writes for Macworld.

“Both Apple Photos and Google Photos offer these insanely great, sanity-saving features, but how do the apps really stack up?” Snider writes. “I’ll put Apple Photos against Google Photos and discover just how similar (or different) they are when it comes to storage, importing, organizing, editing, sharing and creating projects.”

Snider writes, “As you’re about to learn, Google Photos grants a couple of wishes that you didn’t know to ask for.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Who do you trust? We’ll take Apple over Google, thanks.


  1. Yeah, I’ll stick with Apple any day, but I did find out some new stuff about Photos that I appreciate. But this statement seems odd:

    “After a few months of using both apps on my iPhone, I favored Google Photos for its editing speed and the ability to add a vignette.”

    Previously she said: “Dig deeper into the Adjust panel and you find …. Levels (it has eight adjustable sliders in four different histograms), definition, noise reduction, vignette …”

    And Photos does have a vignette feature as stated. Gawd, Macworld sure has gone downhill after interbreeding with the PC crowd.

    I just wonder if she uses a Samsung camera.

  2. yes, your personal pics are the mother lode of personal information for google. Now they can put a name with a face…all of the faces in your life intact. Your kids can grow with with benevolent google, with all the joys of targeted advertising. I imagine google will be licensing face recognition stations for retailers so they can start working on you right when you walk in the door. Google will know where you you’ve gone and what you enjoy. Make sure you smile for the camera when you are holding up that beer! Google will keep this info safe, I’m sure!

  3. Photos has been a bust for me because it won’t put a referenced library in iCloud. You have to dump all of your photos into its tarball inscrutable file structure. I’ve used the same simple file structure for 15 years across many computers and OS’s.

    Google Photos doesn’t care where or how you store your files so I think it’s a better solution for people who have large libraries and use non Apple software like Lightroom.

    Yeah I know Google scans and data mines everything. But for free I can store every photo I’ve ever taken at full resolution, and only need the Internet to access them. That’s amazing. I trust Google’s storage more than I trust Apple not to screw up Photos in some future half-baked update.

    Btw anyone who relies on either as their sole backup is a moron. Use at least 2 external drives, and store 1 away from your home.

  4. Google may be the doer of evil when it comes to mining any and all data sources (including photos), but they are kicking Apple arse when it comes to cloud computing- their Google docs suite does an excellent job of live collaboration; their Google Classroom has at least matched the functionality of iTunes U; and now Photos is at least as good as Apple’s latest. And they’re hitting Apple at their core (pun intended)- the education market. C’mon Apple- where’s that magic?

    1. Let’s set aside the fact that Google is an untrustworthy data miner and Apple as far as we know is successful in staying true to user privacy (at least until iCloud is hacked, which is bound to happen someday).

      There is a much bigger concern in my mind: Apple has turned its back on Mac users and has been basically following Google’s lead the last several years with software and services. Apple, like all the other software titans, yanked the rug out of decent software programs to make cloud-dependent apps and push its subscriptions. The freedom that Apple once offered in having a full-featured Mac that you could use out of the box, offline, not subscription required, is becoming less and less of a reality. THE VERY FIRST THING A MAC USER IS ASKED TO DO WHEN STARTING UP FOR THE FIRST TIME IS TO CREATE AN APPLE ACCOUNT. What the F, Apple, who do you think you are? A Mac is set up to phone home to Apple servers CONSTANTLY, with no user notification of what is being sent or why. That’s the kind of behavior we hate about Google and MS — WHY IS EVERYONE HERE GIVING APPLE A FREE PASS ???

      Now Apple wants to tether you just like the evil Big Brother that it parodied so famously in 1984. First it starts by dropping key Mac software (pro apps, Aperture, iPhoto, etc), then it bakes iCloud into every cobbled together replacement. Then Apple takes away the option of the user to install huge local hard drives or upgrade memory in hardware. Then Apple stops updating Macs and instead puts all its effort into annual iOS gadget releases.

      …and then Apple ceases to be relevant for technical/scientific/creator communities who still need trucks to get shit done.

      So is the problem Google, or is the problem that Apple leaders are screwing over longtime Apple users by chasing after the Google business model of turning everyone into a subscription-based user? I wonder.

      1. I would suggest that iCloud is no more or less ‘hackable’ than any other big cloud product out there (except maybe government servers!). So that, to me, is a wash.

        And I’m no fan of Googles business model. I think privacy and security will be the next big debate in the tech industry. I suspect that more people will be willing to sacrifice security and privacy for ‘free’ products and the ability to socialize/gossip (which I think is a terrible trade-off). So Google, FB, etc will maintain a stranglehold despite the efforts of companies like Apple to spread the word on the dangers of deep data mining.

        Lastly, cloud services are here to stay, and it’s the wave of the future. I agree that Apple hasn’t made the transition smooth. But they have to provide these services to maximally leverage internet tools, provide necessary services to their customers and remain competitive with Google, MS, etc. Right now, Google is eating their lunch, and taking their lunch money! I’m waiting for Apple to do what they do best- integrate the internet of things into a package that’s easy to use, nice to look at and powerful. And when that package comes, it’ll revolutionize the industry once again. Can Cook pull it off? I sure hope so….

  5. I don’t know about the Google Photos experience, but I do know about Apple’s – it sucks! Maybe it’s fine for happy snappers but for almost everyone else the demise of Aperture is an ongoing disaster. There is still no app out there that combines intelligent storage features with ease of use and modestly comprehensive editing the way Aperture does/did. Surely there is room for Photos (for people who want Cloud features) and for Aperture (for people who want the best combined photo storage, cataloguing and editing features)? The day Apple dumped Aperture is the day that Apple’s Kool-Aid stopped working for me. Just another uncaring, big company blowing off many of its longest and most loyal customers.

Reader Feedback

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.