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Google's popular photo app is about to disappear - what you need to know

You've probably been wondering when Google was going to update its popular free photo editing program, Picasa. And, unfortunately, the answer is something you probably don't want to hear.

Google has recently announced that it will no longer update or support Picasa after March 15th, and that the software will eventually be phased out. This is sad news for many who used Picasa as a free alternative for basic photo editing projects. And, though Picasa will continue to work beyond the March 15th deadline, it will no longer receive bug fixes or software updates.

Picasa was available for both Windows and OS X users, and has been around since 2001. Since that time, its simple platform and free tools have attracted a solid user base. But, when Google Photos was launched back in 2004, many suspected that the writing was on the wall for Picasa.

The good news is that Google Photos is a solid alternative to Picasa. However, Picasa Web Albums will be impacted. If you currently store images in these albums, Google will move them over to the new program, keeping all of your current tags and comments intact. This change is expected to take place on or around May 1st, when some of Picasa's features will stop working.

During this transition time, Google recommends that users begin phasing out their use of Picasa on their own. Essentially, if you use Picasa, the company suggests that you begin logging in with Google Photos when editing albums.

If you decide to make the switch on your own, rather than wait for the phasing out of Picasa, there is software you can download to make the process easier. This software will automatically upload photos from your hard drive to Google Photos.

As for the desktop version of Picasa, it will still be available and operating normally if it's already installed on your computer. But, keep in mind, if you continue to use the desktop version, the Web Albums feature will still be ending.

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