Online photo services with printing options usually revolve around on-demand printing for special occasions, but Google appears to be trying something different: printing photos every month no matter what you’ve taken. A 9to5Google tipster has revealed a Google Photos test subscription service that automatically selects your 10 best pictures for printing each month. You just tell Google whether you want to focus on faces (including pets), landscapes or a “little bit of everything” — so long as you’re willing to pay $8 per month, you’ll get a collection of related 4×6 prints on matte cardstock. You can edit images before committing to the print process.
The trial is billed as invitation- and US-only. We’ve asked Google if it can elaborate on its plans for the trial, including the possibility of a wider rollout.
The test is pitched as ideal for those who want to frame their snapshots or and them out as “gifts to the important.” It could certainly be helpful if you’re an avid photographer who wants tangible copies of your finest work, and might help Google pad its bottom line even when customers don’t pay for extra storage. With that said, this may be a tough sell in its current form. You not only need to take at least 10 photos per month for this to make sense, you need to take photos you’d be happy to print for posterity. This won’t help much if you just use Google Photos as a backup for your Instagram throwaways.