Google Photos vs Google Drive: Difference and Comparison

Google is a multinational company specialising in internet-related products and services started in America.  It is one of the biggest technological companies in the world.

Google has several applications, like Gmail, Google Docs, Google Photos, Google Drive, etc., with different functions.

Google Photos and Google Drive are two applications that work as storage applications for files. You can view your files online as well as offline.

Google Photos automatically syncs all images from your phone to the application, but you must manually add files to Google Drive.

Key Takeaways

  1. Google Photos is a cloud-based photo storage and sharing service, while Google Drive is a cloud storage service for files and documents of all types.
  2. Google Photos offers unlimited storage for compressed photos and videos, while Google Drive provides 15GB of free storage for all types of files.
  3. Google Photos provides automatic backup and syncing of photos across devices, while Google Drive requires manual upload and syncing of files.

Google Photos vs Google Drive

Google Photos is primarily designed for storing, organizing, and sharing photos and videos. Google Drive is a file storage and synchronization service that allows users to store, share, and access various file types, including documents, spreadsheets, presentations, and multimedia files.

Google Photos vs Google Drive

Comparison Table

Parameters of ComparisonGoogle PhotosGoogle Drive
FunctioningGoogle Photos is a photo gallery that can save photos, videos and gifs, which can be saved in online cloud storage.Google Drive is a backup and storage application for various files. For example, PDF, ZIP, videos, photos, etc.
User InterfaceThe application resembles any other gallery application. When the app opens, you are greeted with various photos and videos on your phone.Google Drive is similar to any file-managing application. When the app is opened, it shows various files on the device.
OrganizationPhotos are organised in particular folders and cannot be moved to other folders.The files can be saved in folders, and they can be moved to other folders.
Storage SpaceGoogle Photos provides unlimited storage space for photos.Google Drive provides 15 GB of storage space for saving files, and more space can be bought later by the user.
Photo EditingPhotos can be cropped, rotated and can be made into a collage.Photos cannot be edited in Google Drive.
Photo ScanGoogle Photos does not enable photo scanning from the application and requires downloading an additional app.Google Drive can scan photos, files and documents.
Google LensGoogle Photos has a feature called Google Lens that uses artificial intelligence to identify the elements in a photo.Google Drive does not have Google Lens.
SharingGoogle Photos can share its contents only with one person at a time.Google Drive can share its content with multiple people at a time.

What is Google Photos?

Store photos up to 16 megapixels and videos in 1080p resolution. The app was free until now, but it was recently announced that Google Photos would become a paid service.

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Google Photos can automatically recognize faces, analyze photos and sort them into folders. The app will end its free version on June 1, 2021.

The paid version will give more storage space to users and the ability to upload photos in higher resolutions.

While Google Photos does help save images, it does not provide an option for capturing an image with the camera or advanced editing.

If your main goal is to store images and videos, then Google Photos is a better option than Google Drive.

google photos

What is Google Drive?

Google Drive is a file synchronization and storage service developed by Google on April 24, 2012. It can store data worth 15 GB for free.

Users can change privacy settings for individual files and choose who can and cannot view, edit or share them. Google Drive can open Excel sheets, documents, photos and power-point presentations.

Google Drive has 800 million users worldwide, storing about 2 trillion files on the application. Google also offers 30 GB of storage space for those who have purchased the Starter pack of Google Workspace or G Suite.

Gladly for all the users, Google Drive remains free of cost. 

Google Drive also allows editing files and saving and storing them. 

google drive 1

Main Differences Between Google Photos and Google Drive

  1. Google Photos works like a gallery and saves only photos and videos, while Google Drive is a file manager and saves PDFs, ZIP files, photos, videos, etc.
  2. Photos cannot be moved from one folder to another in Google Photos, but Google Drive allows the organization of files per your requirement.
  3. Google Drive only gives 15 GB of cloud storage space, but Google Photos gives unlimited cloud storage space (with some limitations).
  4. Google Drive allows you to edit files but cannot edit photos or videos. Google Photos, on the other hand, provides the service.
  5. Google Photos does not have the feature of scanning photos or documents, while Google Drive does.
  6. Google Lens comes additionally with Google Photos, but not with Google Drive. It helps in identifying aspects of a photograph.
  7. While Google Drive enables sharing with multiple people simultaneously, Google Photos does not.
Difference Between Google Photos and Google Drive
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Last Updated : 11 June, 2023

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25 thoughts on “Google Photos vs Google Drive: Difference and Comparison”

  1. The pending changes to Google Photos make for an intriguing shift in the realm of photo storage services. It’s a fascinating development.

  2. I appreciate this detailed comparison between Google Photos and Google Drive. It’s provided clear insight into how these platforms are distinct.

  3. This comprehensive comparison of Google Photos and Google Drive is an insightful read. It’s valuable to understand each platform’s distinct offerings.

    • Absolutely, understanding the specialized functions of Google Photos and Google Drive helps in utilizing both platforms effectively.

  4. I’ve always used Google Drive for all my files, but it’s interesting to learn about Google Photos and its focus on photos and videos.

  5. The paywalled version of Google Photos raises concerns, but the range of features it offers for photo storage is worth considering.

  6. The paywall for Google Photos is a bit disappointing, but it seems like a good option for storing images and videos nonetheless.

  7. The comparison between Google Photos and Google Drive is quite enlightening. Understanding their respective functions is crucial for effective use.

    • Absolutely, an in-depth understanding of the distinct capabilities of Google Photos and Google Drive is essential for optimizing their use.

    • Couldn’t agree more. This article offers valuable comprehension of the specialized roles of Google Photos and Google Drive.

  8. Fascinating information about the differences between Google Photos and Google Drive, I had no idea about most of these details! Will definitely use Google Photos for storing my photos and videos.

    • I completely agree! It’s an eye-opener to know the specifics of each service. Google Photos seems more user-friendly for images and videos.

  9. The functionalities of Google Photos and Google Drive are quite different based on this article. Impressive to see the distinct capabilities of each service!

  10. The difference between Google Photos and Google Drive is clearer to me now, thanks to this article. It has helped me decide which one to use for certain files.

    • I’m glad this article was informative for you. It’s crucial to know the distinctions between these two services to make the best choice.


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