How To Backup ALL Your Smartphone Photos FOR FREE

TravelMore Update

Thanks to everyone who has been using TravelMore, my free travel blog aggregation service.

Just wanted to update everyone that TravelMore is now fully automated and 24 hours a day it is now automatically updating every 10 minutes with any new posts from BoardingArea, Prior2Boarding, Upgrd, The Points Guy, Million Mile Secrets, MileValue, Doctor of Credit, Frugal Travel Guy, Travel Is Free, and everyone in between!

If you haven’t checked it out yet, please do and if you have any feature requests or suggestions, I am all ears.

How To Backup Your Smartphone Photos & Video FOR FREE

While I love my DSLR camera,  travelling over the past few years I have realized that the majority of the photos I take are now on my iPhone…

My guess is that I am not the only one who does this, so if you are anything like me then your smartphone’s storage probably fills up pretty quickly.

While there are a ton of different cloud storage options like iCloud, Dropbox, etc to backup your smartphone, most of them cost money once you fill up the free space.

I’ve also thought about just saving all my photos to an external hard drive but if something ever happened to the hard drive, all my photos would be lost!

After a little research, I came across quite an awesome workaround to this problem.

Enter Google+

If you aren’t familiar with Google+, don’t worry you aren’t the only one ; )

Basically it was Google’s failed attempt to create a Facebook clone that no one really uses anymore.

That being said, there is one AMAZING benefit of Google+ and that is FREE PHOTO & VIDEO STORAGE!

Normally Google accounts like Gmail, Google Drive, etc only come with 15gb free storage but in an attempt to seed Google+ with content and push people to use it on mobile , Google+ automatically uploads your smartphone photos to Google+ whenever the app is open and it DOES NOT COUNT against the free 15gb they give you.

Google+ also has Android, mobile browser, and desktop applications. On any of the platforms (including desktop), as long as your photos aren’t larger than 2048px and videos are less than 15 minutes long, you can back them up for free!!

I didn’t know they had a desktop app but now I am definitely going to backup all my DSLR photos to Google, just as a precaution.

"Google+ Web"

“Google+ Web”

One thing to remember before backing up your photos is to set your Google+ privacy setting to private. Once you do that, you basically have a free unlimited private photo repository.

As long as you open the Google+ app every few weeks and let it automatically upload your photos (like when you are about to sleep), your entire smartphone photo and video collection will be backed up for free.

It doesn’t get much better than that!

If you are interested in more information about Google+ and this awesome feature, check out the full LifeHacker article or the Google+ official post about it here.

Update

If you are having trouble with Google+, another option is Flickr.

They offer 1 terabyte (1000gb) of storage for free and also have a mobile app that auto syncs. I use both Google+ and Flickr currently.

-Parag

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Introducing TravelMore – All Your Favorite Travel Blogs In 1 Place

Too Many Blogs

If you are anything like me, the first thing you do at work in the morning is visit your favorite bookmarked travel blogs or open Feedly and check the latest miles / points news.

I’ve literally been doing this daily since 2009 when I got into the miles / points game and now I re-check the blogs a couple times a day.

To me it is the equivalent of checking the New York Times or CNN because I want to make sure I know what is going on and never want to potentially miss a deal.

Keeping this obsession in check used to be pretty easy thanks to Google Reader but after that got shut down, I opted to just return to bookmarking instead of switching over to a new RSS reader like Feedly.

The reason for this was because it was getting really annoying seeing 30+ exact same “BREAKING: 50,000 POINT SIGN UP BONUS” posts from different bloggers talking about the same credit card offer or deal…

On top of that, last month when I went to the annual Boarding Area convention in Las Vegas and was amazed to hear that Boarding Area has grown from 35ish (I think) blogs last year to 74 now! There are so many new Boarding Area bloggers that they created a new sub-section called Prior2Boarding!

While I love BoardingArea and think it is awesome to see so many new faces and voices at Boarding Area, as a reader I feel like it is overwhelming to try and keep up with all the miles / points news.

When you take BoardingArea and throw in First2Board, Saverocity, Upgrd, FlyerTalk, MilePoint, the independent sites like The Points Guy, Million Mile Secrets, MileValue, and then all the smaller guys I don’t even know about, you are easily looking at 100+ blogs to follow daily!

Enter TravelMore

Last week, I started wondering if there was a way to use technology to solve this problem and built a small site for my own enjoyment called TravelMore (http://TravelMo.re).

TravelMore

TravelMore

TravelMore does 3 main things:

1. Aggregates All Your Favorite Blogs In One Place

All the posts from BoardingArea, Prior2Boarding, First2Board, Upgrd, TPG, MMS, MileValue, Doctor of Credit, etc are now in one central place.

If you are a blogger or reader and come across a great post that is not posted, you can manually post the link to share with the community.

2. Categorizes The Posts

My issue with Feedly is that sometimes the short headlines can be misleading.

In the below example, if I was just glancing, I would have no idea what this post is really about.

Miles? Manufactured Spend? Credit Cards?

Sniply-1

Feedly

With TravelMore, now all the posts get categorized with one of the following tags:

  • Airline
  • Hotel
  • Credit Card
  • Manufactured Spend
  • Trip Report
  • Mileage Run
  • Everything Else
Categorization

Categorization

So when you see a headline, you can now easily see what it is about!

Instantly Know The Context

Instantly Know The Context

3. Displays The Top 10 Posts 

The 3rd major feature of TravelMore is that it allows users to upvote the best posts so instead of each of us individually reading 300+ posts a day (of which 90% are similar), you can now just instantly see the Top 10 Posts of the day and it updates in real time.

So for example last night, Trip Sherpa at Upgrd.com posted that the Hyatt Diamond Challenge is going away.

As soon as it happened, someone posted it to TravelMore and readers pushed it to the top. So if you visited TravelMore this AM, you instantly saw that Hyatt had stopped offering Diamond Challenges.

"No More Hyatt Challenge"

“No More Hyatt Challenge”

Additional Features

Outside of the 3 main features, there are some additional features that people might find useful like being able to see all the newest submitted posts (basically a Feedly-like feed).

Also if you are too busy to check the blogs daily, you can subscribe to the daily email digest which will send you the Top 5 posts from the previous day.

Daily Newsletter

Daily Newsletter

I Could Use Your Help / Feedback

I literally built TravelMore overnight to ‘scratch my own itch’ as they say, so if you have any additional features that you think would be useful, please do share and I will work towards implementing them.

I am also manually posting most of the links right now from a RSS feed. I am working towards automation but it is a challenge because there is no way for a computer to auto-categorize a post without first understanding what it is about…

So in the meantime, if you are a reader and find a great post, I encourage you to post it and share it.

If you are a blogger, I also highly recommend self-posting your newest content because then you will automatically be notified of any comments users make.

For example, Points With A Crew posted on TravelMore last night and because he posted it under his account, he was instantly notified when someone commented on his post.

Example from Points With A Crew

Example from Points With A Crew

Recap

While I am happy that there are so many new blogs out there, as a reader I know it can be a bit overwhelming!

Hopefully TravelMore can help some of you more effectively read the the travel blogosphere.

I purposely designed TravelMore to be open ended and allow users to submit posts and upvote the best content. If you find TravelMore remotely useful, please remember to do your part to upvote the best content and be an active part of the community and not just a lurker : )

Keep calm & travel more!

-Parag


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