Earlier this week we watched as Google did the world a solid and dropped the Google+ requirement when using Hangouts. It was an awesome move, one we didn’t think would become a trend. Today, a new report from Bloomberg claims the search giant is gearing up to make Photos — Google+’s photo backup, editing, and sharing utility — into a completely stand-alone service. No Google+ necessary.
It’s one of Google+’s single best features (okay, arguing with people online was also pretty fun) and the brain child of former Google+ lead Vic Gundotra. We won’t go as far as suggesting Google could be abandoning their social network (it still has valuable marketing data), but they certainly aren’t forcing it down anyone’s throats like they used to. And that’s a good thing.
Photos as a stand-alone app/service has been a long time in the making. Many Googe+ updates ago, the app appeared in app drawers as its own app icon, and when selected, would take you into the Google+’s photos section (which felt like a completely different app). As photos began adding more and more features, it seemed to only make sense Google would finally break it away from Google+.
We’re hoping that by dropping the Google+ requirement, the app will finally allow us to back up our photos to Google Drive, something we’ve been requesting for years now. Still no word on exactly when we can expect Photos to land in the Google Play Store as a stand-alone app, but we’ll be waiting.