Two photo tips for your phone

There’s a new Google+ commercial out that shows off a pretty convenient feature of the mobile app. You can turn on a setting that automatically adds photos that you take on your phone to a private album in Google+, so you can easily share the photo later from your computer (or any other device). I use this pretty often; I’ll take some photos on the go, and then share them in a Google+ post later when I have access to a full keyboard. You should try it out if you haven’t already! You’ll probably find yourself sharing more if you have it enabled.

Since I almost never connect my phone to a computer, I like to store my photos locally, and I’m really into backups, I go a step further with a couple of additional apps: Dropbox and Dropsync. Dropbox, as you probably already know, is a cloud-based storage service. It has a web interface, and also apps that allow you to easily access your documents on your various devices. When I upload my photos to Dropbox from my phone, I can easily transfer them to the local storage on my computer where I store and manage all of my photos. What Dropsync does is keeps any folders you choose automatically in sync with an associated folder on Dropbox. What I do is keep my entire “Camera” folder in sync, which is where the Camera app on Android stores photos and videos. What’s nice about this combination is that Dropsync will upload the full-resolution photos (and videos) to Dropbox (I also bought a Dropsync PRO key for unlimited file size and instant uploads), so it’s a real backup. Google+ is great for sharing, but it limits free photos to 2048 x 2048 pixels. Not a bad deal for unlimited photo uploads, but I use the Dropbox solution in conjunction with Google+ in order to have a complete backup of the original files. So far this has worked out pretty well, though on a recent trip with flaky Internet connections I had a couple of videos that weren’t automatically synced to Dropbox, so it’s always a good idea to keep an eye on things and transfer manually if necessary.

Update on February 24, 2012: Dropbox has just updated their mobile app to allow automatic uploads of photos and videos. It doesn’t have all of the fine-grained controls of Dropsync, but I’m trying it out now without Dropsync disabled as it looks like it does everything I need.

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