Not all smartphones come with enough internal memory storage these days, the new Nexus 4 is a great example, as the basic model has just 8GB with no way to increase it either. Even if your phone has plenty of space and a microSD card slot – an upper range Galaxy S3 perhaps – you could be a prolific photographer who quickly fills up your phone’s memory. In which case, you could be looking at signing up for an online photo storage and sharing service, but there is a bewildering choice of options out there. To start you on your way, here are five of the most popular options you should test before making your final decision.
One of the most established names in the business, Flickr provides unlimited photo storage and plenty of organisational options, and a very generous 30MB maximum file size, or 50MB if you pay for the $25 (about £16) premium membership. If you want to get more involved with Flickr, you can share photos with friends and take part in the active community. It’s easy to sign up with a Yahoo, Google or Facebook account, and an iPhone and Android application.
Depending on your requirements, Snapfish may end up being a one-stop shop, as along with the unlimited photo storage, you can share photos with friends, order prints or create fun artwork. The only restriction is that you must order a single print from them each year. It’s certainly more aimed at family and casual users, and photos are stored at a standard web resolution and a 5MB maximum size.
If you use Android, Google+ or any other Google service, then Picasa is definitely worth investigating, as it’s easy to combine all the services. You get 1GB of space for free, but if you pay around $2.50 each month, this is increased to 25GB, which also applies to Google Drive too. All this integration is good news if you’re an avid Google user, but if you’re new to it, then it can be overwhelming at first.
Like Flickr, Photobucket has been around for a while. These days it’s far more complex than it once was, incorporating unlimited storage space, albums, editing and social network integration too. An iPhone and Android app are available, as is a desktop client for ease of use.
Unlike the other systems here, Dropbox is a simple online storage locker, which offers 2GB of space for free. Some mobile phone manufacturers provide a Dropbox account for free, such as HTC and Samsung, where you may get a larger amount of space; or it’s easily upgradeable up to 500GB if you’re willing to pay. You don’t get any photo editing or printing features, but it’s incredibly easy to use and there’s an iPhone, Android and a desktop app for uploading pictures, or any other type of file, to Dropbox.
Additionally, if none of these appeal, there’s always Facebook, Apple’s iCloud and Microsoft’s SkyDrive, depending on your mobile operating system and social networking preference.