Home Smart Phones Your phone’s stock gallery app just got a fantastic Google Photos upgrade

Your phone’s stock gallery app just got a fantastic Google Photos upgrade

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Your phone’s stock gallery app just got a fantastic Google Photos upgrade

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Google Photos integration in Realme gallery edited

TL;DR

  • OPPO, OnePlus, Realme, and Xiaomi phones now have Google Photos integration in their gallery apps.
  • This integration lets you see your Google Photos library in the OEM gallery app.
  • The feature also allows you to set up photo backups without opening the Google Photos app.

Many smartphone manufacturers offer two gallery apps on their devices, namely their own app and Google Photos. What if you could seamlessly access your Google Photos library in the OEM app, though?

Android Police reports that OPPO, OnePlus, Realme, and Xiaomi phones all have Google Photos integration in their own gallery apps. The outlet reports that this integration is available on OPPO, OnePlus, and Realme phones running Android 14. It also notes that Xiaomi first gained basic integration in late 2022.

I noticed this feature on the Realme 12 Pro Plus a while back too, and it’s easy to get started with this integration. You need to simply open the gallery app and then tap settings > Backup to Google Photos > Backup. From here, you’ll be taken to the Google Photos app, where you’ll be prompted to allow your gallery app to access Google Photos.

Enabling this option means you can back up your captured images/videos via the OEM app instead of via Google Photos. That’s not a big deal even if you hate using the Google Photos app as you only need to set up backups once anyway.

The more notable perk is that this integration allows you to see your entire Google Photos library in the OEM gallery app, in addition to backing up your captured images/videos via the OEM app. You might have to wait a few minutes for your Google Photos library to show up in the gallery app, though. In saying so, I would’ve liked a separate toggle so I didn’t have to enable backups to view my cloud library in the OEM app.

Do you use Google Photos or the OEM gallery app?

19 votes

Realme’s gallery app displays your Google Photos library in a “restored” folder. Videos are streamed from Google Photos or they can be downloaded via the download icon. Meanwhile, photos are first displayed as ~1080px previews before being automatically downloaded at full resolution and displayed at the top of the folder. This isn’t exactly the most visually pleasant arrangement.

Photo edits are handled pretty well, as the gallery app lets you choose between replacing the original file or saving a copy (see the screenshot below). And I found that choosing either option was accurately reflected in Google Photos on the web. Edits are made using the gallery app’s tools, and features like the Color OS image clipper tool worked just fine after the photo was downloaded.

Realme Google Photos integration editing

Android Police also noted that Xiaomi’s gallery app was recently updated to offer comprehensive Google Photos integration after offering basic support in 2022. It looks like Xiaomi’s integration also lets you choose whether you want images to be manually or automatically downloaded too (as opposed to BBK phones only doing it automatically). 

Google’s own support page notes that only Xiaomi, OPPO, OnePlus, and Realme phones are supported for now. However, the page adds that you need a minimum of Android 11 rather than Android 14. This requirement suggests that older phones can also get Google Photos integration in their gallery apps.

Either way, we hope Google Photos integration comes to the Samsung Gallery and other OEM gallery apps in the future as it would reduce the need to juggle two gallery apps.

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