Understanding Google's Album Archive and How to Save Your Content Before Its Closure

  • Jun 20, 2023
  • Liam Hoffmann
Understanding Google's Album Archive and How to Save Your Content Before Its Closure

Google has a plethora of services, which can make it challenging to keep track of where your images and videos are stored. Currently, visual content is saved in Google Photos and Google Drive, but there is another service called the "album archive" that could be holding very important content. In this article, we will discuss what the "album archive" is, why Google is shutting it down, and how you can save your content before it's gone.

What is Google's Album Archive, and Why Was It Created?

Launched in 2016, Google's "album archive" is a centralized storage service for photos and videos shared across different Google applications, mainly Blogger and Hangouts. The idea behind this service was to provide users with a single location to access and manage their visual content shared on various Google platforms. This meant that users didn't have to search through each individual app to locate their images and videos.

However, as time passed, the necessity for the album archive diminished. Blogger started to store blog photos in its own "Blogger media storage," and Hangouts, Gmail's chat service, was shut down in 2022. As a result, users began adapting to searching for images and videos within specific platforms, rendering the album archive less useful.

Why Is Google Shutting Down the Album Archive?

Google has decided to discontinue the album archive service on July 19, 2023. The primary reason for this decision is the declining usage and relevance of the service. Since most users now search for images and videos on individual platforms, the album archive has become less necessary. Moreover, with the closure of Hangouts and changes in Blogger's media storage, the album archive has lost a significant portion of its original purpose.

Therefore, Google has decided to focus on improving other services like Google Photos and Google Drive, rather than maintaining the album archive. But if you have content stored in the album archive, it's essential to act fast and create a backup before the service is terminated.

How to Check If You Have Content in Google's Album Archive

To determine if you have any photos or videos stored in the album archive, follow these steps:

  1. If you have used Blogger or Hangouts in the past to share multimedia files, there's a chance you have content in the album archive.
  2. Visit the album archive by accessing this link: get.google.com/albumarchive
  3. If you find any content, you can either download it manually or create a copy (instructions in the next section).
  4. If the album archive is empty, you don't need to take any further action.

Creating a Copy of Your Album Archive Before Its Closure

Before Google shuts down the album archive, it's crucial to create a backup of your stored content. Follow these steps to create a copy:

  1. Visit Google Takeout by clicking here.
  2. On the Takeout page, you'll see "Image File" as the only selected service to create a copy.
  3. Click the blue "Next Step" button.
  4. In the new window, navigate to the "Transfer to:" section and choose "send download link by email."
  5. In the "Frequency" section, select "Export once" and choose ".zip" as the recommended file type.
  6. Finally, click on "Create export," and within a few hours, Google will send you an email containing your files to download.

By following these steps, you can ensure that your valuable images and videos are not lost when Google discontinues the album archive service. As Google continues to evolve and improve its services, it's crucial for users to stay informed and adapt to these changes to safeguard their digital content.

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