Can I delete photos after uploaded to Google Photos?


👤 Diwas Poudel    🕒 Apr 16 2022    📁 TECH

Google Photo is a Google-provided app that lets you store, view, share, and manage your photos and videos. It stores those files on Google Drive. It enables you to provide two-way media upload capabilities from your iPhone/Android to Google Photo and vice versa. If you use free Google Drive, it will use your 15GB Google Account storage space if free space is available.

Deleting media (video, photo) is something we commonly do in our smartphones to save free space on our smartphone storage. So, users having questions like "Can I delete my photos once they are uploaded to Google Photos?" is obvious.

Let's understand various scenarios explaining deleting photos on your device and Google Photos.

Can I delete my photos once they are uploaded to Google Photos?

Ans: If your device's photos and videos are already synced with Google Photo, you will have two copies of the same photos and videos: one on your device and one on Google Server. So, if you delete these already synced photos/videos from your device, it will only be deleted from your device, but one copy is still there on Google Server.

This deleted content can be viewed via Google Photos Apps or the Google Photos website: https://photos.google.com/ at any time you want.

You can try it by just deleting one photo from your device and checking it the same in the Google Photos app.

Also noted is that anything in your Google Photos library can be edited, shared, deleted, or managed.

You won't be able to see already synced photos and videos in Google Photos Apps if:

  • You make use of the built-in gallery on your mobile device.
  • You've gone offline.
  • You are not logged in with your Google Account to Google Photos

In terms of security, Google Photos has a higher level of security than your device. You may have lost your device, but as long as you have a Google Account linked to your Google Photos, it will be there as long as Google exists.

How to know whether your photos are synced with Google Photos or not?

It is necessary to know whether your device's photos and videos are synced properly with the Google Photos server. And here are the steps you can do:

1 First verify whether the Backup and Sync feature is enabled or not.

Steps:

1a Open the Google Photos app on your device.

1b At the top right corner, Tap your profile icon 
Here you can see your Google Account, and if it is not your required Google Account then you can change it by clicking on Manage your Google Account. Then again click again on Profile Icon.

1c Select Photos settings

backup-and-sycn-turn-on-google-photos
fig. Backup and Sync enable in Google Photos App

1d Tab "Back up and sync"

1e Then make sure toggle is ON under Back up and sync.

If ON then it will automatically upload photos and videos from your device to your Google Account.

Now you can cross-check whether your photos are in-app or not.

  • Just Open your gallery photos/videos.
  • Then cross verify it by opening Google Photos. If you have some photos/videos in your gallery then it shows your device and Google Photos are synced properly. 

Now let's go further:

What happens if you delete photos without being synced with Google Photos?

If you have photos/videos on your devices and the same copy is not available in Google Photos, it indicates that sync is not working, and if you delete photos from your device, these photos/videos will be lost.

How do I delete photos from my device but leave them on Google photo?

Ans: The answer is similar to the question: Can I delete my photos once they are uploaded to Google Photos? And the answer is if your Photos /Videos are properly synced with Google Photos then you can freely delete them from your device. It works for every device either Android or iPhone.

Scenarios with Google Photo website:

If you log in to Google Photos and delete a photo from there, it will only remove the photo from your Google account. You won't find anything similar in your Google Photo Apps.

If the photos are saved on both your device and Google Photos, deleting them from Google Photos web is dependent on two factors.

1 If backup and sync are enabled, photos will be deleted from both Google Account and Phone. As a result, both copies will be deleted.

2 If backup and sync are turned off, photos will be removed from your Google Account only, i.e. they will be deleted from the cloud, but they will still be available on your phone.

What to do if deleted photos from Google Photos?

If you accidentally deleted photos and want to recover them, you can find them in Google Photos' Trash folder. It will remain there for 60 days after you delete them. You can get to them by following the steps below.

trash-google-photos
fig. Trash Folder in Google Photos on the Google Photos website

If you are on mobile, then you will get a bin folder instead of a Trash folder like this:

bin-folder-in-google-photos-app

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