Google Photos Turns One, Now Hosts 24 Billion Selfies


This past weekend marked the first birthday of Google Photos, the long-awaited standalone photo hosting and sharing service that was announced back on May 28, 2015. To celebrate the occasion, Google has some interesting facts and helpful tips for you.

In the past year, over 200 million users have stored over 13.7 petabytes worth of photos on Google’s servers. In that vast ocean of photos, 24 billion of the images were found to be selfies — identified by the automatic labeling system that has applied 2 trillion labels so far.

The photo collection is so vast that it would take a person 424 years to wipe through all the photos stored today on Google Photos.

Google has also shared some neat tips and tricks for using the service — little things you might not have known before, but which could save you a lot of time or help you do what you need with your images.

One is pressing your Shift and ? keys at the same time while you’re browsing the Google Photos website. A helpful list of keyboard shortcuts will pop up to show you how you can more efficiently navigate the site.

Keyboard Shortcuts

Searching for multiple keywords at a time helps you locate the exact photos you’re looking for. You can also even search by emojis (e.g. ? ? ? ?) to find photos that match what the emojis show.


If you ever find yourself running out of storage space on Google Photos, it’s because you’re storing the original quality versions of your images. The service offers free and unlimited photo storage, but your photos need to fall under a certain resolution to not count towards storage space.

An easy way to free up a lot of space is to have Google automatically downsize your original quality images for you. Simply go to your settings menu and convert all of your uploads to “High quality” from “Original quality.”