Google Photos for Android prepares to add a homescreen widget for your Memories

Google Photos for Android prepares to add a homescreen widget for your Memories

Back in October, Google released an update to the Google Photos app for iOS that added a homescreen widget. This widget cycles through the “Memories” albums that Photos automatically generates. On Android, Memories are visible at the top of the “Photos” tab, but Google is preparing to let users see them on the Android homescreen through a widget — just like on iOS.

An APK teardown can often predict features that may arrive in a future update of an application, but it is possible that any of the features we mention here may not make it in a future release. This is because these features are currently unimplemented in the live build and may be pulled at any time by the developers in a future build.


Version 5.49 of the Google Photos app is rolling out on Android, and a quick look through the APK reveals that a widget is being prepared.  New strings reference a “Google Photos widget” that lets you “rediscover moments from Google Photos.”

<string name="photos_widget_account_not_found">Account not found</string>\n<string name="photos_widget_description">Rediscover moments from Google Photos</string>\n<string name="photos_widget_label">Your memories</string>\n<string name="photos_widget_loading">Loading…</string>\n<string name="photos_widget_no_logged_in_account">Please add your Google Account before setting up the Google Photos widget</string>\n<string name="photos_widget_one_year_ago_title">1 year ago</string>\n<string name="photos_widget_select_an_account">Select an account</string>\n<string name="photos_widget_this_week_subtitle">This week</string>

While the strings and widget preview image suggest the Memories album will only show photos from this week last year, it’s possible that the widget will behave the same way as it does on iOS. That is, you’ll be able to add a widget that cycles through all of your auto-generated Memories albums.

Although the requisite receiver and activities are listed in the app’s Manifest, I’m unable to actually add the widget to the homescreen as it seems to be dynamically disabled. Perhaps Google will enable the feature through a future update or by toggling a server-side flag. Once the widget becomes available in the Google Photos app for Android, we’ll let you know. You can download the latest version of the app from Google Play, though version 5.49 may not have rolled out to everyone just yet.

Google Photos
Developer: Google LLC
Price: Free

About author

Mishaal Rahman
Mishaal Rahman

I am the former Editor-in-chief of XDA. In addition to breaking news on the Android OS and mobile devices, I used to manage all editorial and reviews content on the Portal.

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