What is Ask Photos, How does it work?

What to know

  • Ask Photos is an AI feature on Google Photos that lets you search and find photos with natural queries and prompts.
  • Powered by Google Gemini, the multimodal capabilities enable Ask Photos to understand queries, find relevant results, pick out best photos to create highlights, and even find text in your photos.
  • Ask Photos is yet to be released, and will arrive with additional capabilities in the coming months.

Have a burgeoning gallery on your smartphone? Can’t find what you’re looking for? The new ‘Ask Photos’ feature on Google Photos will soon make your life easier. 

Announced during Google I/O 2024, Ask Photos is an upcoming AI-powered feature that will let you ask the AI to look for particular photos, places, pets, and more in the Photos app. Here’s everything you need to know about Ask Photos – how it works, what can you do with it, and when you can start using it.   

What is Ask Photos?

Ask Photos is what you get when you integrate AI into Google Photos app. The upgrade is powered by Gemini, Google’s homegrown AI model, and will make it simpler for users to find specific photos based on natural prompts. 

Image: blog.google

Although there are several cases of big tech shoehorning AI into every product willy-nilly, Ask Photos is a much needed feature on Google Photos. Traditional means of searching through large galleries can be inefficient. Even if you use the right keywords, there’s a high chance that you may still have to scroll through tons of photos and videos to find what you’re looking for. 

This is where the power of AI truly shines. By simply asking Google Photos, you can now find whatever it is you were looking for within seconds, and without having to scroll. 

How does Ask Photos work?

Thanks to Gemini’s multimodal capabilities, Ask Photos scours through images, understands the context of the photos, and finds matches that are relevant to your query. Ask Photos can also read the text within images to understand what is happening in your photos. 

As such, Ask Photos will not only identify images based on the keywords in your search but also study the search results to provide the exact match. That means you can conduct advanced searches, such as finding photos with a common theme, summarizing progress on an activity, as well as specific details like license plate numbers (if you happen to forget your car).

Image: blog.google

Ask Photos can also create a highlight of events and trips. Going over the various shots, Ask Photos will find the top pictures to add to your highlight and even write a caption to go along with it.

If the AI gets something wrong, you can correct its mistakes and give it additional information. The details will be saved for the future, and the more you interact with it, the more personalized the AI will become. Many more capabilities will be added to Ask Photos down the line. 

Note: Ask Photos is currently an experimental feature and its User Interface is subject to change.


Let’s consider a few commonly asked questions about Google Photos’ Ask Photos feature.

When will Ask Photos roll out to Google Photos?

Ask Photos was first announced at Google I/O on May 14th 2024. It will roll out in the next few months. 

Is personal data used to train Ask Photos AI?

According to Google, your personal data will not be used to train the AI, nor will it be used for ads. No human will be reviewing your AI conversations or personal data. 

Will Ask Photos be a Google One feature?

Given Google’s track record of lumping all new features into its Google One subscription, especially ones that are AI-powered, it’s highly likely that Ask Photos will only be available as part of the Google One subscription.

We hope this guide helped you understand the upcoming Ask Photos feature on Google Photos. Stay tuned for more updates!

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