Google Photos' album sharing feature isn't working properly

Update (November 20): The issue with sharing albums on iOS has been acknowledged by an expert on official Google forums. For more info, head here.

Original story:

There’s definitely something wrong with Google Photos’ album sharing feature. Specifically, several users say sharing album links through email isn’t working – they say the Photos app throws error when they try to do this.

In case you don’t already know, while selecting the recipients for sharing an album, one can either select the named contacts or generate and send a link to the album over email (if the person is not on Google Photos). The latter you can do by selecting the email app from the sharing menu of the Photos app. However, the functionality is not working as intended.

With hundreds of users chiming in, this issue being reported on official Photos forum since 2016 caught our sight. Affected users say when they try to access the app’s feature of album sharing through links over email, a notification stating “Error getting link, please try again later” pops up.

googlephotos-sharing album

Some users even report that album sharing through named contacts isn’t working as well, generating “Trouble sending photos” error or “HTTP error” in some cases.

The issue being reported is complex in itself. Reason being, for some users the email links are not sent, while for others sharing gets blocked after multiple shares. In addition, many report the problem occurred after sharing with multiple contacts, while for some sharing an existing or new album with the same recipient multiple times locked out the functionality. It’s worth mentioning that sharing album trouble occurred irrespective of size of album being shared.

One of the experts on official Photos forum added on November 4, 2016 that:

“A bug has been reported to Google about emails failing to go to the recipient and we are waiting for a fix”

So far so good. But what about those who aren’t sharing using this ‘sharing through email’ option? Well, users facing the temporary lock-out while sharing through named contacts are speculating if Google Photos has certain limit to how many users one can share with – or how many times sharing can happen (with a single user) – in a given time frame.

We also encountered the temporary lockout while sharing an album with a single as well as multiple recipients repetitively. Despite the problem being reported in large numbers, Google hasn’t yet acknowledged it, or came out with an explanation in case it’s a known limitation. If you are among the ones facing the aforementioned issue, manually sharing through emails – get the shared link, copy it manually into an email, and then send it – is the only suggested workaround.

We’ll keep you updated in case of any further development.

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Dr. Aparajita Sharma

A budding entrepreneur by profession, and a psychologist by education. As a founding member of PiunikaWeb, I am nurturing this firstborn with my sharp-eyed expertise and even journalistic writing when needed.