One of my favorite features in the Google Photos app is Memories, the stories-like content at the top that shows a collection of random clicks to give you a pleasant walk down the memory lane. Even though I initially hated the idea of stories in my gallery app, it has grown over me with the passage of time. Now, Google Photos is getting even smarter at showing you Memories with some AI magic.
At I/O 2021, Google announced that it is now applying machine learning tricks to identify visual patterns in photos. Once it picks up photos with a common element in them, the app bundles them up and highlights them as a separate class of memories. Those common visual elements in photos can be anything from your favorite black jeans that you wear on all special occasions or the brown leather bag that is your trusty office companion.
Google Photos is also adding more types of Memories such as New Year celebrations or festivities like Thanksgiving. These will appear in between the photo grids as you scroll through the gallery app. However, Google is also making sure that the Memories feature does not surface painful incidents from your past. With that in mind, it is now easier to rename a memory or delete it entirely. And soon, Google Photos will also let you remove a single photo from a Memory or erase the entire group.
Another cool feature coming to Google Photos is Cinematic moments. This is essentially a bunch of stills of the same subject captured moments apart, which are then stitched together using computational photography to create a moving image or animate them to look like a GIF. Google says that it will even generate artificial frames to fill the movement gap between two photos in order to create a smooth animation aka a cinematic moment. This trick not only works for ‘nearly identical pictures’, but works its magic on scanned photos as well.