Original Poster

Google Photos app stuck forever on "Getting ready to back up: 1 photo left to backup"

So about a week ago, I noticed that Google Photos wasn't actually syncing any of the photos taken on my Android mobile phone. Note that it's been working as expected up until this point.  

I've tried clearing data and cache, I've tried turning "backup sync" off and back on, I've tried uninstalling and reinstalling Google Photos.  None of it helps.

I also tried clearing out all photos from my DCIM folder, and then Google Photos said that "backup was complete", but as soon as I clicked even just one new photo, it's stuck again, saying: "Getting ready to back up: 1 photo left to backup".

I'm at home, on WiFi, with the phone plugged in and charging, and it still never gets past this point.
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Paolo Amoroso
Paolo Amoroso
Hi Troddinrazor, what device and Android version are you using? I suggest that you add some of the latest photos to a new album and see whether the backup status gets unstuck.
Original Poster
Adding photos to an album doesn't help unfortunately.  When I try to do so, it brings up a toast saying "Uploading" which says on the screen for a few seconds, and then disappears, without the photo being uploaded (nor, of course, is it added to the album either).

I'm using a Samsung Galaxy S5 on Nougat (via Resurrection Remix). 
Original Poster
I've had to remove the Google Photos app from my phone at this point because while it "Getting ready to back up" (which never does anything) it eats an incredible amount of battery and makes the phone become very hot.
Paolo Amoroso
Paolo Amoroso
Thanks for the additional information. In case you reinstall the app it might be worth trying to clear the Google Play Services data.
Original Poster
Ok, clearing all of the Google Play Services data seems to have worked to finally get it back into an uploading state.  Thanks for that tip.

Still find it strange that this scenario occurred in the first place....
Helen wrote the article and every single one you posted has been discussed here.

Solution 1 - Check your backup status

Step 1. Open Google Photos app on cellphone.

Step 2. Sign in Google Account.

Step 3. Tap Assistant at the bottom.

Step 4. Look at the first card. If it writes:

  • "Waiting for connection" or "Waiting for Wi-Fi": You should either alter settings or connect to a Wi-Fi or mobile network. Tap the card to change settings.
  • "Back up & sync is off": Tap "TURN ON" on the card to back up your device's photos & videos, as well as ones you capture in the future.
  • "A photo or video was skipped": A photo or video on your mobile device doesn't meet Google Photos upload requirements: Photos can't exceed 75MB or 100 megapixels & Videos can't exceed 10GB
  • "Backing up photos" or "Backup complete": This means your photos and videos should be saved.

Solution 2 – Check your backup settings

Step 1. Open the Google Photos app on your mobile device.

Step 2. Sign in your Google Account.

Step 3. Tap Menu > Settings.

Step 4. Tap Back up & sync. If it's on, you can see these options:

  • Account: Make sure that the account listed is the same one you're viewing in the Google Photos app.
  • Upload size: Tap this options to change the storage size of your photos & videos.
  • "Back up photos" or "Photos back up using cellular data": Choose whether you want to back up your photos using your mobile network (rather than just Wi-Fi). Charges from your service provider may apply.
  • "Back up videos" or "Videos back up using cellular data": Select whether you want to back up your videos using your mobile network (rather than just Wi-Fi). Charges from your service provider may apply.

Solution 3 – Clean your app data/cache

1. Open your device's Settings.

2. Select Apps.

3. Choose Google Photos in the list.

4. Select Storage.

5. Tap Clear cache and Clear data. Then, sign in and turn on “back up & sync” and never touch the backup settings.

Or, instead, you can uninstall and reinstall Google Photos. Both clear data and uninstallation won’t delete your photos/videos.

Solution 4 – Solution for folder backup

1. Open Google Photos app.

2. Sign in to Google Account.

3. Tap Menu > Device Folders.

4. Tap the folder you want to back up.

5. Next to Back up & sync, tap the switch.

Solution 5 - Switch to “Over Wi-Fi or use mobile network”

Switch the network connection of your phone to “Over Wi-Fi or use mobile network” option. Many user has solved their problems by doing this.

Additionally, making sure that any previously saved wifi networks are not ticked to be used as hotspots; and turn off restrict background use of data on specific wifi networks.

Solution 6 – Restart / reconnect account / reinstall

Simply restart or even factory reset (if there is nothing you want to keep) your device may help, no matter for mobile phones, ipads, tablets, notebooks, laptops or desktops. Actually, many issues, not only this one, may be solved by restart.

Or, just restart the Google Photos backup app. Force to stop it and reopen it.

Or, just turn off sync and turn it back on.

Or, just log your account out and log in again and retry. Or, switch to your other Google account and switch back to try again.

Or, uninstall and reinstall the very latest version of the app. Or, uninstall Google Photos updates and reinstall its old version. Anyhow, just install the version which works for you.

Solution 7 – For google photos backup slow

It’s due to your phone memory is very low not the cloud storage memory. Backing up needs to access and write data to phone and it cannot, so it gets stuck. Delete some cache and or apps and it will start automatically when necessary mem is available.

Solution 8 – Release backup burden

There is a very brief popular that let you select to either re-upload pictures or to only upload new files/pictures. Close the browser and hit new files only on the pop up and you may able to clear the loop.

Solution 9 – Keep sufficient power

Backup and sync may get turned off when the device is low on power or in low-power mode. Charge the device or turn off low-power mode, turn on backup and sync and the backing up numbers will start going up.

Solution 10 – Ensure enough memory space

When backing up photos from local device to Google cloud, Google Photos needs enough memory space to scan over all photos on source folder. Thus, enough free space is necessary. If your source local device is running out of space, it is hard for Google Photos to operating.

Solution 11 – Manually upload photos/videos

If all solutions above does not work for you, lastly, you can manually upload photos, pictures, videos or movies to Google cloud.

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