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Amazon Prime now includes a 'Family Vault' for sharing photos

Up to five users can upload unlimited photos and 5GB of video.
Matt Brian, @m4tt
October 18, 2016
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Slowly but surely, Amazon has built out its Prime subscription to offer access to more online services. Faster deliveries and streaming video often dominate the headlines, but over the past couple of years, the company has also offered unlimited photo storage. In its bid to lure users away from and close the gap on Google's free image hosting, the retailer today announced the launch of Family Vault, a new feature that lets anyone with a Prime subscription invite up to five friends and family members to join their account and upload as many photos as they like.

Amazon's Family Vault focuses on collecting and organizing images taken on multiple devices and accounts. While videos and other files can be stored too, storage is capped at 5GB across those five additional users. Once uploaded, the company says its new smart search capability can find matches based on "people, places or things." If those features sound familiar, Google's been doing the same with its AI-powered algorithms for quite a while.

It appears that Amazon has quietly been building other services around the expansion of Photos. Just last month, the retailer confirmed its intention to cash in on users storing their photos online with a new printing service. With Family Vault, Prime account holders can combine their images with those taken by others and order photo books, cards and other prints with free delivery.

Although the official launch is limited to US customers, it appears Prime subscribers outside North America can utilize the service via the web with their existing account. I was able to access Family Vault on Amazon.com using my Amazon UK account details, for instance.

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