New features have been added to the Google Photos app that enable photos to be hidden in an archive. This article shows how it works.

A missing feature in Google Photos? Yes! The ability to hide photos you don’t want to see or to appear in the main photos feed. This is more useful than you might realise and here is why.

Google Photos is available for Android phones and the iPhone and iPad, but here I will be taking screenshots from the Android app. Development of the iOS app appears to be a bit behind the Android app, but new features are added sooner or later.

Talking of screenshots, they clutter up my Google Photos like crazy because I take so many. There are hundreds of screenshots and buried among them are a few real and important photographs. Previously there was no way to hide certain photos without deleting them, but now there is a solution.

Not everyone takes screenshots, but if you are a business user you might take photos and scans of business cards, receipts, documents and other things related to work. Imagine viewing your photos on the big screen TV with your family or friends and the next few photos that come up are receipts or documents. It spoils it.

There may be other types of photograph that you don’t want to appear in your Google Photos feed when you are browsing it in public or with others, such as ex partners, bad hair days and so on.

Now you can send anything you don’t want to see to an Archive. Archived photos are not deleted and are still in your Google Photos account, but they do not appear in your Photos feed.

This means that I can archive all my screenshots and clear them from my photos feed. Other people can archive their business photos or other images they want to hide. It’s really useful.

1 Select photos to archive

First, open the Photos app and it shows the photos feed with thumbnails of the latest photographs at the top. Long press on a photo to select it or long press just to the left of the day/date and all the photos on that date are selected.

Second, press the three dots in the top right corner to show the menu and then press Archive.

 Google Photos app on Android showing thumbnails Google Photos on Android showing selected photos and the menu

2 View and archive photos

The first time you archive photos a message like the one below is displayed on the screen. Press DONE or GO TO ARCHIVE.

If you are viewing a single photo full screen instead of the thumbnails feed as in the second shot, just press the three dots for the menu and then press Archive. Take care because the Delete menu is right next to it. Here I am archiving one of the screenshots for this page.

 Archive photos using Google Photos for Android Archive photos in Google Photos for Android

3 View the archive and more settings

To view the archived photos at any time, open the sidebar menu and press Archive. Thumbnails are displayed just like the normal photos feed and you can view photos, delete them and so on.

There is one other setting worth mentioning and while the sidebar menu is open, press Settings. About half way down is Google Drive.

 Google Photos for Android menu Google Photos for Android settings

This setting determines whether photos and images stored on Google Drive appear in the Google Photos feed. You may have work photos and images in Google Drive that should not be in your photos feed, so turn off this feature. As with Archive, it removes unwanted clutter from your photos feed.