About your Google Photos activity and storage

Photos or videos that you back up in Storage saver, original quality or express quality will count towards your 15 GB of Google Account cloud storage or any additional storage that you may have purchased as a Google One member. If you're inactive in Google Photos for two or more years, or if you're out of storage, your Photos content may be deleted.

Maintain your activity in Google Photos

Important: Activity is considered by account, not device. Make sure that you use Google Photos in all the accounts on which you wish to remain active.

The simplest way to keep your account active is to visit Google Photos on the web or through the app. Make sure that you're signed in and connected to the Internet. Examples of activity include:

  • Signed-in and online activity in Google Photos on Android, iOS or the web. For example, using the app to:
    • View your backed up gallery
    • Share a photo or video
    • Create an album or photo book
  • Back up a photo or video

You're also considered active if you have an active Google One membership with no outstanding payment or quota issues.

If you're inactive in Google Photos for two years or more, all of your content may be deleted from Google Photos. Before that happens, we will:

  • Give you notice using email. We will contact you at least three months before content is eligible for deletion. If you're notified that your account is inactive, follow the link in the email to sign in to Google Photos to keep your account active.
  • Give you the opportunity to avoid deletion (by becoming active in the product).
  • Give you the opportunity to download your content from our services. Learn more about how to download your Google data.

If you stay inactive for two years or more:

  • Your photos and videos will be deleted and sent to the bin.
    • Backed up photos and videos deleted due to inactivity will stay in your bin for 60 days before they're deleted forever.

If an album is deleted due to inactivity, you can restore the photos from the album if they are still in your bin. You can't restore album data, like album titles. Learn how to restore your photos.

Review your settings if your account has been inactive for two years or more. After your content has been deleted because of inactivity, settings like backup and notification preferences are unchanged. Other settings, like Partner Sharing and face groups settings, are reset. Learn how face groups works.

Back up items previously deleted because of inactivity

After your content has been deleted due to inactivity, local copies of photos and videos won't be backed up.

To re-enable backup:

  • On your iPhone or iPad:
    1. Uninstall and then reinstall the app.
    2. Sign in to Google Photos.
    3. Turn on backup.
  • On your Android device: Sign out of Google Photos, then sign in again.

Learn about the Inactive Google Account policy.

Manage your storage

Important:

  • Each Google Account includes 15 GB of storage, which is shared across Gmail, Google Drive and Google Photos.
  • If you have a Pixel 5 or earlier, you receive unlimited storage for photos and videos backed up from your device at no charge. Learn more about your storage options.
  • Any photos or videos backed up in high quality or express quality before 1 June 2021 don't count towards your Google Account storage.
  • Photos and videos backed up in original quality count towards your Google Account storage. Learn more about photo and video backup options.
  • Photos backed up in original quality and then compressed to Storage saver quality (previously named high quality) count towards your Google Account storage.

You can use the storage management tool to know how much storage space you have left, clean up storage and get more storage.

Specifically, you can:

  • Find out how much storage you have left.
  • Estimate how long your storage may last based on how often you back up items to your Google Account.
  • Review items that count towards your storage that you might want to delete, like blurry photos, screenshots and large videos.
  • Buy more storage with a Google One plan (where available).

An estimate of how long your storage may last may not be available if:

  • You haven't consistently backed up content over the past few months.
  • You're close to your storage limit and we can't provide an accurate timeline estimate.
  • Your account is provided through work, school, family or another group.
  • You're out of storage.

If you're out of storage or over quota, you won't be able to back up additional photos and videos. If you're over quota for two years, your content in Google Photos may be deleted. Learn more about your storage quota. You can always free up storage space through the storage management tool or Google One storage manager, and within Google Photos. Learn how to manage your Google storage space.

If you want more storage space for your memories, you can expand your storage through Google One (where available). In the US, plans start at $1.99 per month for 100 GB of storage. Plans include additional member benefits, like enhanced Google Photos editing features, VPN and more, that can be shared with up to five others.

Learn how your Google storage works.

Get help with your Google Photos activity and storage

About G Suite/Workspace inactive accounts

The inactive account policy does not apply to G Suite or Workspace accounts.

Know when your content will be deleted

If your account is subject to this policy change, we'll give you ample notice (at least three months) before your content may be deleted. We'll attempt to contact you via your email address and notifications. Learn more about managing email addresses for your Google Account.

Preserve content from a loved one when they pass away

We recognise that many people pass away without leaving clear instructions about how to manage their online accounts. Google can work with immediate family members and representatives (in certain circumstances) to provide content from a deceased user's account. Learn more about our process for requesting a deceased user's data.

To prevent deletion due to inactivity, let us know how to manage your data in the event of death or prolonged inactivity. Learn more about Inactive Account Manager.

Reset your password for an inactive account

If you can't remember your password for an account that you infrequently use, verify your identity and reset your password with Google Account recovery. For more help to sign in successfully, refer to account recovery tips.

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