Google’s new photo service is finally ready for its moment on stage, according to a Bloomberg report.
There aren’t a lot of details as to what the new tool will look like, only that the new photo service will break from Google+ and include sharing to Facebook and Twitter. Presumably you’ll still be able to add them to your Google+ stream, but the company looks like it’s accepted the reality that Google+ is an also-ran in the world of social networks.
Google has already laid the groundwork for this transition by adding a Google Photos folder to Drive. Also, the company bought and quickly closed photo-backup and sharing service Odysee earlier this year, presumably to bring in some additional technology and talent.
Google has a good set of tools to make a killer service. Along with its strong cloud capabilities with Drive the company also owns Snapseed, a rather good editing application. It just needs to tie all of these together into a streamlined, cross-platform package.
Being able to share with and allow a select circle of friends and family to view and add pictures to an album, regardless of whether they have an iPhone or Android device, would be a welcome feature. There are ways to do this in Google Drive, Dropbox, and other services, but no one’s really nailed it yet. Slick editing tools and rapid backup could combine for an appealing package.
The story behind the story: Google has long dabbled in photos. It bought the rather dormant Picasa in 2004, which got its last update in August. The editing and backup tools in Google+ are rather good, but it’s been awkward having them tucked away inside a social network. Breaking photos into a standalone service sounds like the right move, but there are lots of cloud photo solutions out there. It’ll need good, easy to use editing and sharing tools, at the very least, to win people over.