Last week, Google announced that it was discontinuing free, unlimited photo storage in its Google Photos service, enraging fans. I get it, sort of: No one can dispute that Google has a reputation for discontinuing services and that that history plays a role in the outrage. But for this Google Photos customer and fan, nothing has changed: I was already paying for Google Photos and I will continue to do so. And if photos matter at all to you, I recommend you do the same.
As Google’s David Lieb explained on Twitter, Google Photos has over 1 billion users and they upload an astonishing 28 billion photos to the service every week. The service currently stores over 4 trillion photos. His assessment of Google Photos is both correct and poignant: The service isn’t just cloud storage, it’s “the home of our life’s memories, the place we go when we’re feeling nostalgic. It’s the closest many of us have to a record of our lives.”