The start of summer signals peak shutterbug season. From graduations, weddings and family vacations to those long, lazy days sleeping in late and running through sprinklers — ’tis the season to get super snap-happy!
But then what? Once we capture all those great memories, how do we share, store, organize and actually appreciate them? According to estimates by market research firm InfoTrends, people around the world took more than 1.2 trillion digital photos in 2017.
Saving and sharing photos via a smartphone has changed in a big way in the past few years. You likely know how to upload your pictures and videos to Facebook or Instagram, but what about sharing them directly with family and friends?
On an iPhone, use AirDrop to share photos and video directly between Apple phones, iPads, Macs via a wireless Bluetooth or WiFi connection. Go to Settings > General > AirDrop to make sure it’s toggled on and set to share with either your “contacts only” or “everyone” around you. Select a photo or a group of photos and tap the share button (a box with an arrow pointing up). Your potential photo recipients must have their AirDrop "on" as well, and then their device should show up under the AirDrop menu. Tap that to share instantly.
If you’re going from Android to Android, use the super-fast Files Go app by Google. It’s incredibly simple: Once you install the app, it automatically finds all the media on your device. Tap the “Files” tab on the bottom and under “Transfer securely without Internet” and tap “Send.” Enter your name and, if your friend has the app installed as well, you’ll see their name pop up. Now you can choose Images or Video from the menu, and transfer safely and securely in just seconds. It’s like AirDrop but for Android.
If you’re moving photos between Android and iPhone or vice-versa, grab the free Send Anywhere app (iOS, Android) to effortlessly swap them no matter what phones you’re both using.
Storing photos for the long term seems more complicated than it really is. You don’t need a stack of USB drives packed with photo backups, just save them to a cloud service like the Google Photos app or Apple’s iCloud.
Google Photos (iOS, Android) is the best free tool around — even on an iPhone! Once you download the app, you can save an unlimited number of photos and videos in high quality on Google’s own cloud servers, and view them from any device. You get 15 GB of free storage. But if you run out or go over that limit, Google automatically scales all your photos down to 16MP and videos down to 1080 (which is what we usually shoot on a smartphone anyway), and you have to buy additional cloud storage space starting at $1.99 per month for 100 GB. The upside, though, is that 15 GB is plenty of storage for the average person.
Don’t forget to submit some photos to our summer photo contest at https://lcecho.com/photocontest/