Google is adding a new feature to its photo app, just in time to help with all those holiday photos you’re going to to snap on your smartphone.

The Google Photo App now features shared albums that will allow you, your friends, and family to put all those pictures and videos from Christmas Eve at Grandma’s into one folder where everyone can access them at their convenience.

I’m always trying to convince folks at family gatherings that we don’t each need to hand our phone or camera to someone to get that group shot of all of us. Since the photos are digital, only one person needs to take the shot and we can all share them.

But I suppose people worry that the person taking the shot will forget to share. Shared albums make sharing those memories just a little bit easier.

The Google Photo App was spun off of the most popular feature of Google Plus – Google Plus Photos.

The free app is available in the Google Play Store and the Apple App store. No smartphone? No problem, you can also access Photos via the web by clicking here.

To make a shared album, first select the photos you wish to share.

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Then tap the share icon at the top of the app.

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Choose the New shared album option.

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Then choose the option let others add their photos.

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Then choose the folks you want to share the album with.

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They’ll receive a link in an e-mail or message – depending on how you decide to send the information.

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They’ll be able to view the photos and videos and add their own.

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Those you’ve shared the album with can also choose to get notifications when new pictures or videos are added.  For those without smartphones, they can find the albums on the web by going to google photos online and choosing the menu button.

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Then choose shared albums from the drop-down menu. If you share albums online, friends and family who happen to have smartphones will be able to view them on their phones and add photos from the phone.

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Check it out.

~ Cynthia