This story was originally published and last updated .
Google Photos is one of Android’s most popular apps, but it’s only a matter of time before Google starts looking to turn its archives into a money-making machine. A new section of Photos 5.18 reveals that Google is thinking about limiting some editing features to Google One members, making a paid membership the only way to access them.
New chains within the app include prompts like “Get more editing features with a Google One membership” and “Unlock this feature and more as a Google One member”. Furthermore, it seems that some people have run into this charge wall in the wild. The Color Pop filter, previously available to everyone, appears to be part of a limited trial of its use to paid members.
Filters like Color Pop are being tested as a Google One exclusive.
It is currently unclear exactly what features and / or filters will be placed behind the fee wall. The 5.18 version of Google Photos also includes mentions of new photo processing options including Dynamic, HDR and Vivid, as well as new filters that could allow users to adjust the look of the sky. with Afterglow, Air, Ember, Luminous, Radiant and Stormy options. Hopefully if Google finally rolls out paid features more broadly, they’ll be new features instead of the previous free ones.
We saw the launch of a new photo print subscription last month, and Google is working hard to find ways to make Google One membership even more appealing to consumers, such as provides free VPN service. Google now allows users to store unlimited high-quality photos and videos in the cloud, so there’s a reason the company is trying to find ways to help offset costs. Let’s just hope that it can afford to keep keeping the essential cloud storage aspects of Photos free for those who rely on it.
Google Photos 5.18 is now available on APK Mirror, or you can wait to update via Play Store.
Google told Engadget in a statement that only the upgraded version of the color pop requires Google One registration, not the existing functionality already available. “In Google Photos, color pop is a feature that continues to be available to everyone for free to use for photos with depth information (such as portrait mode),” said a spokesperson. “As part of an ongoing rollout that began earlier this year, Google One members can apply the feature to even more photos of people, including those without details.”