Need an extra back-up for the photos you take on your phone? If you're an Amazon Prime member, make the most of the free storage you get with your account
If you’re a member of Amazon Prime, one perk you might not know about is that you get unlimited photo storage, which means you can use it as an additional back-up for the photos you take on your phone. And because the storage is unlimited, you can back up full-sized photos, too.
Google Photos, by comparison, only offers unlimited storage for what it calls ‘high-quality’ images, which are compressed and lower-quality. If you’re an iPhone user, iCloud only syncs with your phone – if you lose your photos on your iPhone, you’ll lose them in iCloud too. So adding Amazon Photos to your phone is a useful extra way to make sure your photos are safe.
Go to your app store (Google Play on Android; the App Store on iPhone) and download and install the Amazon Photos app. Once it’s installed, sign in to your Amazon account, and then allow the app to access your photos.
Next, you’ll be asked if you want to upload photos automatically as you take them – this is on by default; turn it off if you’d rather not, but we’d recommend leaving it on. You’re also asked if you want to allow the app to use mobile data if wi-fi isn’t available. That’s off by default: if you’ve got unlimited data it’s worth switching that on to make sure you’re always up to date.
Then the app asks if you want notifications – we recommend turning that off. Once you’ve done all that, the app will start uploading your pictures, which will take a while if you’ve got lots on your device.
Want some more help with backing up your photos? Our friendly tech team can help you with one-to-one support on a range of tech issues. Find out more here.
Once up and running, you can enable the Family Vault, where up to five people can upload photos and view them – useful if you’re collecting pictures from a wedding, for example.
Amazon does surprisingly good facial recognition, grouping together photos of individuals. If you click People you’ll see the app’s guess at which faces belong together: you can name them and tidy up any anomalies.
The app will also use the location information on your photos to group them by place, and you can also search by keywords such as beach or cat.
That recognition search is on by default: that is less than ideal, although you can turn it off at set-up, or any time after that by going to Settings. Amazon says it then deletes all recognition data associated with your photos.
It is worth noting that if you use the facial recognition feature, your photos are being used to help train Amazon's facial recognition algorithms.
You can also manage your photos on a computer or tablet by going to amazon.co.uk/photos in your browser and signing in.