Apple has added a service that allows you to automatically transfer photos, videos and albums from your iCloud photo library to Google Photos (via MacRumors). The feature has a support document setting out the procedure, which simply goes to privacy.apple.com, log in and go through the process of “transferring a copy of your data”. Apple says the transfer will take between three days and a week.
Some things cannot be transferred: Apple says that shared albums, smart albums, photo stream content, live photos, some metadata, and media not stored in your iCloud photo library will not come with you. The section on Live Photos is especially eyebrow-raising. iPhones take standard photos, and Apple does not make it clear whether the whole picture will be left behind or just the video clip that surrounds it.
For what it’s worth, the transfer tool says that 10,793 of my photos will be transferred, which is the exact number of photos in my library. Since more than 2,500 of them are Live, it would seem that Apple intends to transfer it, but we have reached out to explain it. At the time of writing we have not heard.
Apple says the feature will not remove anything from your iCloud photo library; it will simply make a copy of it, so you still have to delete things manually if you no longer want to store them in iCloud. In addition, the feature is currently only available to people in Australia, Canada, the European Union, Iceland, Liechtenstein, New Zealand, Norway, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, and the United States.
If you want to jump from iPhone to Android or just use Google Photos, this tool should be an easy way to quickly transfer all your photos to the service without uploading them yourself. A few clicks, and your photos will be on their way to their new home. Just make sure you have enough Google storage.