It’s the last day for Pixel 3 ‘Original’ quality photo uploads. Make it count.


  • The perk allowing for free Google Photos uploads for Pixel 3 devices ends today.
  • Starting February 1, 2022, Pixel 3 phones will have free storage, but at a reduced quality.
  • The Google Pixel 3a never got this perk, so it is not affected.

When the original Google Pixel launched, it came with a unique perk: free Google Photos backups of photos and videos at their original quality. This applied for the entire life of the phone. It was a great perk that was one of the device’s big selling points.

The perk didn’t last. With the Google Pixel 2, Google changed the program to allow for unlimited “Original Quality” Google Photos uploads for about three years. After that, the phone would get unlimited free storage of photos and videos but at a reduced quality. This same policy applied to the Pixel 3 series, and guess what? Today’s the last day for that perk (h/t 9to5Google).

See also: The best camera phones you can get

Starting tomorrow, the Google Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL will not be able to backup captured media at full resolution for free. You will still be able to back up without any compression if you like, but it will apply towards your Photos storage quota. In the place of Original Quality, Pixel 3 devices will get free unlimited storage for media at “Storage Saver” quality, which compresses the files.

In other words, today is the last day to push as much high-quality media as possible from your Google Pixel 3 to Google Photos.

Google Photos uploads: Other Pixels?

What about the Pixel 3a, Pixel 4, Pixel 5, and others? These phones never had the Original Quality upload perk, so nothing changes for them. They will continue to get free unlimited storage for photos and videos at Storage Saver quality. If the user opts for Original Quality, it would apply to their quota.

As for the Google Pixel 6 series, those phones never even got the free unlimited backups at Storage Saver quality. Just like all non-Pixel phones out there, users with a Pixel 6 phone must pay for all Google Photos uploads past the first free 15GB, regardless of the quality of that media.

In other words, today is the official end of an era for Google Pixel devices. It was fun while it lasted.

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