While Google appears to be upgrading the entire Photos experience for consumers and focusing notably on new “Memories” capabilities, it also appears to be neglecting another component of the “user experience.”
Recently, several users of the Photo storage platform have found that photographs that were stored some years ago appear to be damaged in various ways when viewed or downloaded. This discovery came about quite recently.
This past weekend, a number of users of Google Photos who scrolled back to photographs that were around five years old or older saw that the images exhibited what some users described as fractures and lines running through them in some cases, and hazy or distorted portions in other situations. Another issue that was frequently mentioned was the appearance of white dots, and the nature of the data corruption itself appeared to be devoid of any particular pattern, with the exception of the fact that it impacted older photographs.
Users of Google Photos on Android smartphones, users of Google’s Photos online platform, and users of the iOS version of the app have all experienced the same issue. There are millions of individuals that utilize Photos, but we do not have an accurate count of how many of those people were affected.
Users who posted about this issue on the internet and various social media platforms also explained that the photo corruption would remain even if the photos were downloaded either individually or through Google Takeout, which is Google’s system for downloading large amounts of personal data at once. The original copies of their photos that were saved on user devices would be unaffected; the only pictures that showed evidence of degradation were older ones that had been kept in Photos. Original copies of their photos stored on user devices would be OK.
There have been several stories and examples of this posted all over the internet, most of which have detailed the specifics of the corruption problems that have been occurring. Again, it seems that not every user has been afflicted by the issue, but there have been enough reports for it to be considered an uncomfortably broad error.
More recently, a number of customers have reported that the issues they had previously encountered with photo corruption have since been rectified, and even more
Google has said, as of the 26th of September, that it is aware of the problem and is actively trying to resolve it as soon as possible. As was previously reported on this website, Google Photographs has lately been working on enhancements to its Photos platform and is bringing new algorithmic adjustments. These changes will enable it to more specifically detect excellent photos for user Memories and video presentations.
In order to accomplish this look, the business utilizes AI technology to search through photographs. It is still uncertain whether or not this has any connection to the picture corruption problem that has been affecting older images.
In a broader sense, we strongly suggest that, if you are a user of the Google Photos platform, you review your previous personal uploads to the service to ensure that they are in good working order.
In an even broader sense, photographers should exercise an unusually high degree of caution when it comes to the practice of maintaining numerous backups of their most essential photographic and video work across a variety of formats. There is not a single platform that can provide an ironclad guarantee that the data will not be corrupted; this is true even for industry heavyweights like Google. When it comes to severe and arduous image security, the safest course of action is to implement a backup scheme with many layers.
In addition to the risks associated with data corruption, an online picture storage platform runs the risk of deleting or closing your account at random, either by mistake or for reasons that are not quite clear. One company in particular that is notorious for doing this is Google, which leaves users with very few or even no options for redress.