Google Photos Now Supports 'Live Photos' on iOS

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Google Photos for iOS now supports Apple's Live Photos feature. Those who update to app version 1.8.0 can back up and view Live Photos—Cupertino's answer to GIFs—on Google's photo app.

Introduced in September as one of the standout features of the latest iPhones, Live Photos capture a three-second video surrounding the time a photo is taken. Tap and hold the image and watch it come to life.

HTC rolled out a similar feature, Zoe, in 2013. But the company wasn't able to convince major players to support the format, so it never took off. Cupertino has fared better, partnering with Facebook in December to test iOS Live Photos on the social network, with plans to expand availability this year.

Google, meanwhile, last month began transitioning Picasa users to Google Photos. Last week, Google Photos introduced a set of new editing tools that make it easier and faster to touch up multiple images.

The latest update does more than add support for Live Photos: Users can enjoy improved app navigation, reduced cache usage for low-on-space devices, and iPad Split View and iPad Pro support, among other performance improvements.

Be aware, though, that saving too many Live Photos of your sleeping cat or playful nephew could clog up your iPhone: one three-second video is about the size of one 12-megapixel image. Add that to the original still photo—another 12 megapixels—and you are carrying double the data of a typical picture.

For more, see PCMag's review of Google Photos for iPhone, in which analyst Michael Muchmore praised the "clean, minimal, and pleasing" interface.

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