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Google Drive

Saving photos on the cloud? Here's the easiest way to do it

Cause you need somewhere to put your photos from the break.

SO YOU’RE BACK to your normal routine again and chances are you have a large collection of photos saved on your phone from the holidays. They may include family, friends, what presents you got, your Christmas dinner (with Instagram filter, of course), nights out and everything else in between.

Yet those photos take up a significant amount of space so what’s the alternative? Outside of buying an external hard drive, the easiest option is to start using a cloud storage service of which there are many to choose from.

If you’re not using one already, then getting one set up is relatively easy if you have a smartphone.

What is ‘the cloud’?

As opposed to being a mysterious place that exists on the web, it’s best to think of it as a virtual hard drive that’s accessed online. Much like how your email and Facebook photos are saved online,

You can set it up so that photos are uploaded automatically although in most cases, you’re probably better off uploading them manually unless you take a vast collection of photos.

What are your options?

Quite a few to choose from. All smartphones are aligned with a particular service (iPhone = iCloud, Android = Google Drive and Windows Phone = Microsoft OneDrive), but there’s nothing to say you should stick to them. While there are a significant number of cloud storage services out there, we’re going to focus on the above three for simplicity’s sake.

How do I upload photos onto a cloud service?

There are two ways to do this. The first way is to connect your phone up to your computer and transfer manually. All cloud services have a web profile and if you transfer manually, it’s just a matter of signing in and uploading said photos there.

The second and more straightforward method is to upload them manually. This is done by going into photos, selecting the images you want and hitting the share button (Oddly, iOS doesn’t allow you to upload specific photos to iCloud from your photos to Google+ or Evernote instead.)

Alternatively, you can open up the app of any cloud-based storage app on your phone (Google Drive, Dropbox, OneDrive etc.) and upload from there.

What if I want to upload photos automatically?

You can do that as well. Just remember to switch on the WiFi option unless you want to use your mobile data to upload photos as well.

iOS (iCloud Photo Drive on iOS 8.1)

1) Go into settings and select iCloud.
2) Tap iCloud Photo Drive and turn it on. Be sure to scroll to the bottom to turn off mobile data.
3) Go to photos, turn on iCloud Photo Library and tap Optimise iPhone storage (this uploads the full-size images, but keeps compressed versions on your phone, saving space).
4) Once you done that, you can go to iCloud’s web portal and access your saved photos there.

[image alt="iOS Cloud" src="" width="630" height="473" title="" class="alignnone" /end]

Android (Google+)

1) In the photos app, tap the more icon at the top-right hand corner and hit settings.
2) Select Auto-Upload and turn on the setting.
3) From there, you can change settings like photo size, back up over WiFi only  (recommended) and roaming.
4) From there, you can go to your Google+ profile and select photos. Your saved photos will be located there.

[image alt="Android Cloud" src="" width="566" height="500" title="" class="alignnone" /end]

Windows Phone (OneDrive)

1) In photos, tap more and then settings.
2) Find Auto-Upload and select OneDrive.
3) Under photos and/or videos, tap the upload quality you want (Choose Best Quality as that will upload over WiFi.
4) Access OneDrive to see your photos.

[image alt="Windows Phone Cloud" src="" width="603" height="500" title="" class="alignnone" /end]

How do I keep them safe?

You really shouldn’t settle for just a username/email and password, even if you have a very complex password (which by the way, you should). It’s important to remember that most of the cloud ‘hacks’ that occur aren’t hacks per se, but are usually brute force attacks which exploit a weakness so a machine can enter in passwords repeatedly.

Two-factor authentication (which sends you a password via SMS when you want to sign in)  is available for all services and it’s recommended you activate it to add an extra layer of security.

Read: 5 apps worth downloading this week >

Read: Here’s the right way to set a New Year’s Resolution >

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