Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Moving Web Photos in Picasa Mobile

We just released a new version of Picasa Mobile, 2.3.3, that allows users to move web photos to a different album than the one they currently reside in.

To use this feature, in the Web Photo Selector, tap the Menu key.
From the options menu that appears, choose "Move".

Tap the thumbnails of the photos you want to move to select them.
The selected photos are displayed with a green border.

To unselect a selected photo, tap once again on its thumbnail.
The "Move" button shows you the number of selected photos (8, in this example).

Make sure all the photos you want to upload are selected, then tap on the "Move" button.

You will be prompted  to select the target album. Select the desired album from the list and you're done!

Alternatively, the photos can be moved one by one by long-pressing on the thumbnail, then choosing "Move" from the context menu that appears.

Many thanks to Bob for requesting this feature and patiently waiting for it to be implemented, while supporting me with his kind emails!


  1. So this will remove items from my Instant Uploads album and add them elsewhere? Are there plans for a simple copy option?

  2. You can use the "Move" feature when you want to move photos between any two web albums.

    If I understand correctly, you would like to copy photos from one web album to another.

    While I'm not sure why would you want to have the same photo in two places (it would take twice the space), I'm not ruling out implementing this option in the future.
    However, since Google's Picasa Web API doesn't seem to allow a "direct copy", most likely I would have to download the photos and re-upload them to a different album, which will make the process time/bandwith consuming and cumbersome.

    Just in case:
    1. Please note that you can always change the "default target" album by long-pressing on an album's name and choosing "Set as default".
    2. You can choose to be prompted for a target album by going to Settings -> Uploads -> Manual uploads -> Prompt for album (applies to manual uploads only)

    1. Wow, thanks for the quick and thorough reply.

      Let me explain: using Google+'s Instant Upload feature is really handy. It puts every picture I've taken into that album, which keeps a running archive of all my photos. Having that as a master source album of sorts allows me a level of comfort fooling around with albums, deleting photos from them (sometimes on accident), and also allows me to delete all local photos on my phone, knowing there's a backup. I understand the potential hassle of implementing that, but I'm sure there are others who do as I do as well, so I'd encourage putting it in your queue.do


  3. Thank you for clarifying - now it makes a lot more sense :)

    I added this enhancement to my "to do" list. Hopefully, I will find a way to avoid downloading and re-uploading the photos (maybe by using Google's servers as the "middle man").

    Thanks again!

  4. Forgive me for jumping in, but the instant upload stream and the album functions are separate and I believe you can have photos from the stream in unlimited numbers of albums (I do).

    I would also like to have the feature of copying or creating a "shortcut/alias" to allow me to have the same images in multiple albums. Why are photos any different than songs where you have multiple playlists! I might want to view a photo slideshow by event, by person, by timeline, by fav, etc.

    Anyway - just thought I would add my two cents.

    1. I agree, that would be the most efficient way of storing photos. This is exactly how Flickr (Yahoo's photo sharing service) implements it.

      Unfortunately, it seems Google has decided to take a different approach in Picasa Web.
      Basically, in Picasa Web API, Google links photos to albums, meaning that a photo must belong to one (and only one album).

      I looked again at the "Developer's Guide" and you absolutely have to specify the album's ID when uploading or updating a photo (see https://developers.google.com/picasa-web/docs/2.0/developers_guide_protocol#PostPhotos and https://developers.google.com/picasa-web/docs/2.0/developers_guide_protocol#UpdatePhotos).

      Furthermore, there's no indication in the photo "entity" description that it would support multiple "gphoto:album" tags:

      <entry gd:etag='"Qns7fDVSLyp7ImA9WxRbFkQCQQI."'>

      That being said, I noticed in the Picasa Web UI that Google allows copying photos between albums - I'm just not sure if there is an efficient way of doing that from the API. But again, the Move operation is undocumented also, so who knows, maybe I'll find a way...

    2. The copy function on the web ui is so useful as I share some albums with my girlfriend and some other ones (same albums with less photos) with my family without taking more space (I think).
      This would be a great implementation in your app and is the only reason I haven't bought it yet.

    3. @Benjamin: In the scenario you are describing (unless I'm missing something), "sharing" or "sending an invite" to your album may be what you need, rather than copying.

    4. Thanks for your reply.
      I can already share the existing albums with the Google+ app without any problems.
      However, in order to create a secondary album for my family I need to select and copy some photos from a primary album (eg 1000 photos) to this secondary family one (eg 300 photos).

    5. @Benjamin: Okay, that makes sense now. Hopefully I'll find a way to do that.