New leaked images suggest Google Photos will soon be optimized for tablets as the app is slated to make better use of a device’s screen while in landscape view.
This batch of information comes from industry tipster Nail Sadykov who runs the Google News Telegram channel (opens in new tab), which is not affiliated with the company itself. Looking at the images Sadykov provides, the redesigned Photos app looks quite similar to how Adobe Lightroom appears on tablets: a side-by-side view with the image on the left and a variety of editing tools across six sections on the right. It doesn’t appear there will be any changes to those editing tools, since users will still be able to adjust the shadows in a photo or tweak the aspect ratio, for example. The goal with the redesign, it seems, is to help people make more precise edits since the app will better fit the screen. Portrait mode, however, will be staying exactly the same, according to Sadykov on Twitter (opens in new tab).
At the time of this writing, Google Photos on tablets is essentially the mobile version just stretched out. The narrower interface is fine for smartphones, but on bigger screens, you end up with a lot of wasted space in landscape mode.
It’s unknown when the redesign will roll out, if at all. Sadykov claims you can enable the changes in the “latest version of the Google Photos app,” although it is currently “hidden from users.” So, it’s possible the software is going through some internal testing at the moment.
Updating the old
It is worth pointing out the changes follow a trajectory that Google has been on since Google I/O 2022 where the company revealed it would be rolling out tablet-optimized versions of old apps (opens in new tab). One of the earlier waves (opens in new tab) updated multiple Google Workspace apps like Google Drive, Docs, and Sheets to better fit large Android screens. The update even added new features like the ability to drag and drop files. Optimization continues to this day as Google Drive recently obtained “several modernizations” back in March (opens in new tab) that make it easier to see file details on screen, among other things.
Speaking of Google I/O, the 2023 event is happening tomorrow, Wednesday, May 10. During the event, the world will see the debut of the company’s first foldable phone, the aptly named Google Pixel Fold. We also hope to hear about the official launch date of the long awaited Pixel Tablet, so be sure to follow our coverage of Google I/O 2023 as it happens.
And while we have your attention, check out TechRadar’s list of the best Google Photos alternatives for the year.