Library API overview

Using the Google Photos Library API your app can read, write, and share photos and videos in Google Photos.

The Library API is a RESTful API with JSON payload. The structure of the API is based on the product concepts of Google Photos:

  • Library: media stored in the user's Google Photos account.
  • Albums: media collections which can be shared with other users.
  • Media items: photos, videos, and their metadata.
  • Sharing: feature that enables users to share their media with other users.


Like other Google REST APIs, the Library API uses OAuth 2.0 to handle authorization. Your app can request access to the user's Google Photos library via the various authorization scopes provided by the API.

Note that the Library API does not support service accounts; to use this API, users must be signed in to a valid Google Account.

Using the Library API

Before you get started on your app development, keep the following in mind:

Explore the API

To try out the Library API without writing any code, use the API Explorer available in the reference documentation.

Here are some methods to try using the API Explorer:

Check out our code sample that shows some of the key features of the Library API.

Partner program

You can integrate with the Google Photos Library API without joining the partner program. However, if your app is likely to exceed the general availability quota limit, express interest in the Google Photos partner program.

Learn more

Some places to go from here:

  • Get started: configure your project and try out the sample.
  • Guides: the how-to guides and concepts around using the Library API.
  • Reference: the API reference documentation
  • Support: the support options for requesting help or giving feedback.