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Google Photos will finally let you mass delete backups (APK Teardown)

Google Photos is adding a much simpler way to clean up your cloud storage.

Published onJune 13, 2024

Google Photos integration in Realme gallery edited
Hadlee Simons / Android Authority
  • A new feature, “Undo backup for this device,” was spotted in the Google Photos app version 6.87.
  • The feature will delete all backed-up data in Google Photos from a particular device.
  • Locally stored copies of the data won’t be deleted.

Google Photos is set to launch a new feature aimed at simplifying the management of cloud storage and photo library backups. Dubbed “Undo backup for this device,” this new addition promises to streamline the process of freeing up space in Google cloud storage.

An APK teardown helps predict features that may arrive on a service in the future based on work-in-progress code. However, it is possible that such predicted features may not make it to a public release.

This feature was discovered in the Google Photos app ( version 6.87). The following code strings found within the app shed light on the feature’s functionality:

<string name="photos_backup_settings_cod_category">Undo backup for this device</string>
<string name="photos_backup_settings_cod_summary">Delete all backed-up photos and videos from this device in Google Photos, without deleting anything from your device</string>

Essentially, the feature will let users delete all photos and videos backed up from a specific device to Google Photos without deleting the local copies on that device. Right now, users can select and deselect which device folders to back up to Google Photos, but there’s no easy way to remove all data backed up from a particular device.

This could be particularly beneficial in scenarios where users have activated the auto-backup feature, resulting in the unintended upload of extensive photo and video libraries to the cloud. Users who switch devices frequently might also find it useful to declutter their cloud storage by removing old backups that are no longer needed.

While the feature is not yet available, it has the potential to improve how users manage their Google Photos storage significantly.

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