Google Photos is a great place to keep a backup of all your smartphone pictures, but some Samsung users have recently discovered that the service can no-longer be trusted to keep their images safe.
According to a report by Android Police, images created in Samsung’s Motion Photos format are no-longer saving correctly on Google Photos, causing data to be lost.
Motion Photos enhance regular still shots by adding a short video clip, and sometimes audio, each time the shutter is clicked. Unfortunately, these audio and video elements are apparently being stripped out by Google Photos, leaving only the still image.
It’s not clear at this point whether Google Photos is simply failing to display the video content or whether it hasn’t been saved at all. This means Samsung users can’t currently trust Google Photos to back up their motion photos. In the light of this information, I would advise them not to delete any original motion photo files from their devices until the problem has been resolved.
Google Photos has supported Samsung’s implementation of Motion Photos for quite some time, allowing users to tap on the playback icon to display the embedded video. So this change in behaviour is quite unexpected and is likely to catch people out.
A similar motion photo feature is available on the iPhone as well as several other Android handsets, but the exact implementation varies between smartphone manufacturers. This means apps and services such as Google Photos need to write custom code to handle various different formats. In this case, it seems something has gone wrong with the way Samsung’s files are handled. Motion photos created by other devices remain unaffected.
Incidentally, it’s quite easy to leave
Apple on Tuesday suffered a sweeping services outage, with major platforms like the App Store, Apple Music, Apple Arcade, iCloud and others rendered inaccessible.
Trouble started at around 8 p.m. Eastern, according to Apple’s System Status webpage. As of this writing, some 25 services have been down for nearly two hours.
“Users are experiencing a problem with the App Store. We are investigating and will update the status as more information becomes available,” Apple said.
Currently, the App Store, Apple Arcade, Apple Books, Apple Business Manager, Apple Music, Apple School Manager, Apple TV+, Apple TV Channels, Apple Care in iOS, Find My, Game Center, iCloud Account and Sign-In, iCloud backup, iCloud Calendar, iCloud Contacts, iCloud Mail, iCloud.com, iTunes U, iWork for iCloud, the Mac App Store, News, Photos, Radio and Schoolwork are down. Apple resolved issues with Apple Card and Apple Cash, though the two services appear to be impacted by a second problem.
The company has not issued a statement on the matter and it is unclear what caused the widespread downtime.
Update 9:55 p.m. Eastern: Certain services including Find My, Game Center, iCloud and iWork were restored at 9:32 p.m. Eastern.