Google has launched a Google+ photos app for the Chromebook Pixel, something it actually previewed way back at the Pixel launch, and screens showed up in February, but it has taken until now to get the Google+ to wide release. The app plugs into your Google+ account, and will automatically upload photos on any SD card plugged into the device back to your Drive account, in either full resolution (with a limited cap) or Google’s standard 2048px wide format (unlimited) depending on what the user chooses.
The app offers a very nice browsing experience, augmented by the Pixel’s super high resolution display, and touchscreen interface for paging through images. The image viewer shows you a preview, with rotation controls, easy access to sharing and album creation features, and metadata along the right including maps, tags, dimensions and camera data. Offline mode allows for viewing recently uploaded photos, which are automatically cached, and you can add photos from Google Drive, your local downloads folder or attached media storage, and it’ll get the new automagical Google+ photo enhancement treatment if you have that enabled.
The Chromebook Pixel app is available via the Chromebook Pixel owner’s portal, and for now you definitely need to own that fanciest of Chrome OS notebooks to play. But Google’s AJ Asver said in a Google+ update that the app will definitely be rolling out to other Chromebooks as well, though he doesn’t specify a timeline for that happening.
Google+ may not be my social network of choice (I’m not exactly a model citizen of any of them) but the photos experience is pretty great, especially given Google’s recent updates to the same. The G+ Photos app for Chromebook is a good way to help satisfy would-be Chromebook owners who are also photography enthusiasts, too, in the absence of more advanced tools like Lightroom, though it still won’t please any pro photographers. It’ll be much more useful once it hits other Chromebooks, which need something just like this to satisfy users who have grown used to tools like iPhoto.