Android 2.0 & 2.1 Photo Gallery Album Differences – View Picasaweb Albums on a Nexus One

Motorola Droid (left) – HTC Nexus One (right)

I didn’t take a close look at the photo Gallery apps for Android 2.0 (Motorola Droid) and Android 2.1 (HTC Nexus One) until this past weekend. In fact, I might not have take a close look at all had I not decided to upgrade my Google Storage service to 200GB (actually 201GB) to take advantage of the free Eye-Fi 4GB SD card that is part of the Google Storage upgrade. I tested the upgrade by moving all the photos I’ve taken using an HTC Touch Pro2, Motorola Droid, and HTC Nexus One up to Picasaweb. Here’s what I noticed after doing that…

1. Google said early on that one of the changes to Gallery was the preview mode at the top level. You can see that the Droid based on Android 2.0 shows a thumbnail divided into four quadrants. Each quad contains a thumbnail of a photo in that album. The Nexus One based on Android 2.1 displays only a thumbnail of the single most recent photo.

2. One Droid Gallery feature I appreciated was its separate categorization of still photos and recorded videos. These could be viewed in a single directory too. But, I found it useful to be able to see just photos and just videos when looking for a specific one. The Gallery app on the Nexus One does not provide this categorization.

3. If a photo in an Android 2.1 Gallery album has location information (as most photos recorded using a smartphone do these days), it displays location information under the album name. This information is not presented in the Android 2.0 Gallery Album display.

4. The most interesting difference I noticed, however, is that the Nexus One Android 2.1 Gallery displays Picasaweb Albums. Gallery is able to display photos (but not videos) stored in Picasaweb. It does this over the air. So, it is probably a task best performed while connected over WiFi. The big win here is that despite the Nexus One’s limited out-of-box storage capacity (4GB microSD card), I can use it as portal to my Picasaweb albums which could potentially approach 200GB of photos (and videos although the Nexus One was not able to display video file stored on Picasaweb).