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November 29, 2018

Organize Pictures on Your Phone in Three Steps: Tips for iPhone and Android Users

Now that we carry high-quality cameras around in our pockets, we're constantly snapping photos of life's big and small moments. While it's wonderful to be able to capture so many details of our lives and the people we love, the downside to this incredible photographic freedom is that we're left with a camera roll the length of the Great Wall of China. And, we don't want to bother digging through all the photos, not to mention framing them. But there is a way out! Here's how to organize those digital memories on your phone, plus a couple of ways to let your smartphone do the work for you.

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Whether you're using an iPhone or an Android phone, your operating system's default photos app is the best option for organizing photos. There are many alternatives out there, but Apple's Photos app and Google's Photos app work best.

Step 1: Delete what you don't need

If sorting your photos is a chore you keep putting off, implement this simple organizational mantra: delete and favorite. Devote a few minutes to doing this regularly, and you'll be surprised how quickly you're able to trim down your camera roll. We'll get you started:

  • Delete: Scroll through your recent pictures and get rid of photos that are blurry, too dark, or near-duplicates. Don't worry about being trigger happy with that "trash" button — both apps have a "deleted photos" section that will save your photos for 30 days before permanently erasing them (60 days for Google Photos).
  • Favorite: As you're choosing images for the chopping block, also hit the "favorite" button on images you like. To do so, simply tap the heart at the bottom of the screen in Apple Photos or the Star at the top of the screen in Google Photos. Every time you tap the favorite button, a copy of the photo goes to your Favorites album. When you have a little more time, you can go into Favorites and use it to sort your photos into albums. 

Step 2: Create photo albums

Creating a digital photo album is incredibly easy, and these albums will help you keep your memories organized. Think of them as phone folders for your photos. If you used your favorite button wisely, it should be much easier to find and select the pictures you want from that folder than scrolling through your whole camera roll. Here's how:

Creating an album on iPhone

  • In the Photos app, tap Select in the top right-hand corner.
  • Select the photos you want to add to your album.
  • Tap Add To at the bottom of the screen and either tap New Album or select an existing album.

Creating an album on Android

  • In Google Photos, tap the three-dot menu icon.
  • Tap Select Photos.
  • Select the photos you want in your new album.
  • Tap the "+" button and select Create New Album.
  • Once you create and name your new album, you can add more photos to it later by scrolling down until you see Add To, then choosing the album you'd like.

Step 3: Let your phone organize your photos for you

Both iPhones and Android phones can do some of the heavy lifting when it comes to discovering the best way to organize your photos. If you don't have the patience for albums, both Google and Apple offer robust search features. Google search is the most impressive, but both allow you to search by location, date, or person. You can even search using keywords like tree, ocean, or dog. 

Both Google and Apple use artificial intelligence (AI) to figure out how you might like your photos organized. This technology can be hit or miss, but it's an excellent start for those who are facing a mountain of photos.

Both apps will create albums for you using a combination of AI and default settings. Your phone organizes your photos by type: selfies, screenshots, movies, and more. Your phone also creates collections for you based on where you took the photos, the people you photographed, and a photo's date stamp. A few examples of albums Apple and Android might automatically create for you include:

  • Best of the last 3 weeks
  • Gatherings in New York
  • Labor Day Weekend

If you like these albums, go ahead and edit or save them. If not, your phone will replace them with new albums over time.

Armed with your newly organized phone pictures and a new kind of network with Xfinity Mobile, it's easier than ever to share your favorite moments on social media, with family, and with friends. Maybe you'll even take it to the next level and print out your top 10 photos to display on your wall.