Google Photos for the Web Now Behaves like a Native App

The Google Photos progressive web app for desktop and mobile is now live, transforming an ordinary internet platform into a native application…

It appears Google just made a big change with no official announcement. But, it’s true nonetheless. Google Photos for desktop is now a functional progressive web app or PWA. First spotted over the weekend, the web version now acts like a mobile app. It’s available for Chrome on desktop or as a shortcut from a mobile device.

Google Photos Progressive Web App Debuts

For those unfamiliar, a progressive web app or PWA is a relatively new technology. Think about using a native app on a phone or tablet, without having to download it. These act like native apps, but without the hassle of needing periodic updates. PWAs install as simple shortcuts to desktop or mobile home screens and work just like ordinary apps. But, don’t take up a lot of space.


However, there are some limitations with this one. For now, it doesn’t support push notifications or offline functionality. So, it won’t send out an alert when Assistant renders customized content. But, it is possible to upload photos and video, edit and share content, organize albums, add tags, as well as create animations and collages.

It can easily be added to a desktop machine. Just navigate to photos.google.com and click on the menu at the top right. Select “More tools.” Then, click “Install Google Photos” to finish. (If the option doesn’t appear, visit chrome://flags, search for “Enable apps banners,” turn it on and restart the browser.) To add it to a phone or tablet, launch Chrome and navigate to Google Photos. Open the Chrome menu and choose “Add to home screen.”

Owen E. Richason IV

Owen is blog content writer, SEO consultant, social media marketer, and website guy. His work has appeared in the Houston Chronicle, on Business.com, Tampa Bay Business and Financier, AOL and numerous other blogs and websites. is also a musician and is the founder of Groove Modes.