Google+ Photos Replaces Picasa Web Albums

Google made a big change to Google+ photos yesterday, with a new Google+ Photos section which replaces Picasa Web Albums. This will be bad news for people who enjoyed the interaction between G+ and Picasa, but fear not; your Picasa albums are still all there, you just don’t get to them from Google+ anymore.

In addition to native photo browsing, Google+ Photos brings a host of Instagram-like editing options. Let’s explore them a bit.

Google+ Photos Pumpkin

Don't judge, I'm a writer, not a sculptor.

The Google+ Photos area has a pretty standard lightbox photo display with an Edit menu where all the magic hides.

Bring up the Edit menu and you get basic controls for flipping the picture left or right, applying Autofix effects, or bringing up the new Creative Kit editor.

Google+ Photos Pumpkin Creative Kit

The Creative Kit features basic edits, various Effects, and Text.

Under Effects you’ll find a variety of stylistic effects (of course) to apply to pictures, much like Instragram or other such services. Here I’ve inflicted an HDR-ish effect on my poor abused pumpkin.

Apparently I'm no Trey Ratcliff either.

There are tons to choose from, and each has parameters that can be adjusted.

In an interesting twist, there is currently a Halloween option for seasonal effects. This implies there will be more effect sets for other holidays, which will go a long way towards keeping your photos fresh.

Google+ Photos Pumpkin Ghost

Ghosts, graves, zombie skin, vampire eyes… lots of spooky fun to be had in this section.

Have you played around with Google+ Photos yet? Do you miss the Picasa Web integration? Let us know in the comments, and drop us a link to your favorite photo edits while you’re at it!