It seems that Google is slowly but surely making its social networking service the center not only of its own web-based social interactions but even in Android as well. Some are now speculating that the standard Android Gallery app may soon see itself on the way out and be replaced with Google+ Photos.

The writing on the wall was seen and analyzed by Ars Technica’s Ron Amadeo. He observed that the Google+ Photos app was recently renamed to simply “Photos” and can practically do any thing that the Gallery app can do. However, it currently seems to be unable to present photos on the device that were not taken with the camera like what the Gallery app does. The Gallery app was also absent in some of the early builds of Android 4.4 and it was the only app that did not get a refreshed high-resolution icon. It seems that there are also signs in underlying code, where files in the new Gallery editor are tagged as “plus_editor” and the Camera app being separated into its own APK instead of being bundled together with the Gallery app.

This would certainly not be the first time Google has phased out certain parts of the Android platform in favor of its own products, which lately seems to be Google+. It even deprecated Google Talk instant messaging service and integrated it into Google+ Hangouts, which was previously more used for video chats. More recently, it removed the default messaging app on the Nexus 5 in favor of the new Hangouts app that just got support for SMS and MMS.

If this prediction comes to pass, it will likely not be welcomed by everyone. Some might even see it as Google’s attempts to exert even more control over Android. Just last week, the once silent co-founder of YouTube voiced his frustration at being required to have a Google+ account just to comment on YouTube. This change might also impose an added burden on custom ROM maintainers who must now look for a third-party app to use and maintain, as Google apps and services are not included in the Android Open Source Project (AOSP).

VIA: SlashGear


  1. Time to start looking for a third party gallery app, maybe even one with multiple cloud account integration would be nice. Sorry but I’m just not a fan of Google+ or social media sites in general, and refuse to be bullied into using it. I have stopped comments on Google play, YouTube as a result & this has to be a bad thing for those creating apps & videos to make a living as I’m sure I’m not the only one. As the less people comment the less feedback the less likely it is to sell over another. I really do think this forced use of Google+ is going to harm not only the developer & video creator but Android in general in the long run.

    • you dont have to use Google + as a social media website like facebook. Think of it as Google unifying its services around your Google +. You dont have to opt in to any of the social media stuff if you dont want too. Google unifying its services is a good thing. And from the trend everyone is doing now.

      • Umm, that makes little sense. The same could be said for using Facebook Logins for services like Spotify and others, but I avoid them simply because in some cases the developers give you no choice but to use a Social Network Log-In.
        You cannot “use Google+ as a unifying service” when they are requiring you to basically use it just to post a comment on YouTube, ask for Support/Help in Play Store, Send a Picture in Hangouts, Change your Profile Picture in almost any Post-Google+ App/Update (possible, but they don’t make it necessarily easy or obvious that it can be done that way…), set up a YouTube Channel, Auto-Backup Images/Videos (they could have easily used Drive for this, like DropBox, Apple, and Microsoft are doing with their Cloud Storage Solutions), etc.
        There is so much that is becoming dependent on Google+ – not just as a way to log in and access, but at a way to create and consume content that didn’t rely on it beforehand – that your only choice is soon going to be becoming a Google+ user, or using a different platform.
        I will use a different platform and set of services. This is my last Android phone. My life is cluttered enough. I don’t need more “social bullshit” added into it.

      • You dont have to use the social aspect of the service if you dont want to sure they are encourage you to but you do not have to go into google plus and maintain it so yes you can use its services with one. Why do you want 50 different logins for all of google services? that doesnt make any sense. But yeah leave android and go to Microsoft oh wait they are doing the same thing with your MS login. Get a clue dude.

  2. >>>However, it currently seems to be unable to present photos on the device that were not taken with the camera
    Yes it does. First photo is a link to the Folders of images.
    I didn’t find for how we can move a photo to a specific folder/album… inside the app

  3. If the Google+ photos app sucked, I would agree. But, I find it better and more efficient ( not to mention more pleasant to use) so I think it’s fine.

    • I have to agree with you! I find the Google+ photo app much more efficient and pleasant. As we are all different we all have options to chose what app we want to run. Those who don’t like the Google+ Photo app don’t have to use it if they don’t want to, there are plenty of alternatives out there! =D

    • Totally agree! Just wish I could disable the gallery app today… don’t use it anymore. But, alas, I can’t b/c this would disable the camera app too! Sometimes Google’s change just doesn’t happen fast enough for me!


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