A Apple announced a new service that allows a user to transfer photos from iCloud to Google Photos. Something that can be very useful for those who are migrating from iOS to Android, or simply prefer to use the Google service.
The feature is not in iOS, nor in the Photos app. You have to go to privacy.apple.com, log in with your Apple ID and select the option “Transfer a copy of your photos and videos”.
Select “Google Photos” at the destination, indicate what you want to transfer (photos, videos or both) and you're done. According to Apple, the transfer takes between three days to a week. In case of doubt, a support document (in English) on the company's website has a step-by-step
There is no reason to be afraid of losing data on iCloud: the transfer creates a copy of it on Google Photos, and leaves the original photos and videos intact. But be aware: not everything is transferred.
According to Apple, shared albums, smart albums, photo streams, live photos, some metadata and media that is not in your iPhoto library on iCloud (for example, WhatsApp images) are not copied. If an image has been edited, only the most recent version is downloaded, not the original. Duplicates are ignored.
Obviously, you need to have enough space in your Google Photos account for the transfer to complete. The page itself where the transfer is requested gives an estimate of the size of the content.
Remember that Google has changed their free storage policy a few months ago. Before, there was unlimited space for photos as long as they were transferred in what Google Photos calls “high” quality. Now, each image counts against its storage quota (15 GB on free accounts), no matter the quality.
Unfortunately, the service is currently only available to users in Australia, Canada, the European Union, Iceland, Liechtenstein, New Zealand, Norway, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and the USA.