Google One, Google’s subscription program for buying additional storage and live support, is getting an update today that will bring free phone backups for Android and iOS devices to anybody who installs the app even if they don’t have a paid membership. The catch: While the feature is free, the backups count against your free Google storage allowance of 15GB. If you need more you need a Google One membership to buy more storage or delete data you no longer need.
This means that people who aren’t paying for Google One’s extra Drive storage will have their base 15GB to split between Gmail, Drive, Photos and now phone backups. That’ll likely be tight for a lot of people, but if you aren’t using Drive or Photos much it should be workable. iPhone users can manage their phone backups through a new Google One app that’s coming out soon; it’ll store photos, videos, contacts and calendar events in your Google account.
It’ll be more useful for people who are paying for Google One the base membership plan includes 100GB of storage for $2 per month, enough to make Drive, Photos and phone backups a lot more feasible. But regardless of whether you pay for Google One or not, it doesn’t hurt to have another option for backing up your phone. As before, paid Google One memberships include storage that you can share with up to five more family members, live customer support and various perks.
The new Google One app for iOS will also include a storage manager, making it a lot easier to clean up the various data that might be eating up your storage. That’s already available on the web, but given how much we all rely on our phones these days, it’s a smart idea to have it available in the app as well. The new features for free users will be available on Android through the Play Store “in the coming days,” while the Google One iOS app will be “available soon.”