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Some Google Photos users missing hold-and-drag gesture for fast selection

In addition to rolling out a rename of the Assistant tab today, some Google Photos for Android users are encountering a bug that appears to remove the hold-and-drag gesture. This action is very useful for quickly selecting multiple images.

You could previously hold down on a picture in the gallery, and then drag up/down/left/right to select multiple photos. The first step still works and pops up the selection bar up top for the count, as well as sharing, adding to album, moving to trash, ordering a book or prints, and the overflow menu.

However, you now have to select one image at a time by tapping. This is hopefully just a bug, given how the missing Google Photos gesture is the only way to quickly select multiple items for albums or deletion. No other solution is currently available, and it’s a pretty precise action and presents no real usability concerns.

It’s unclear how this Google Photos bug is rolling out. For most users, the gesture is still found on version 4.32.0, which was released yesterday. That said, some already lost it with Monday’s release.

In our testing, it disappeared on one device after 4.32.1 today. That update is widely rolling out now, and back-to-back releases area usually a bug fixer. Then again, my personal devices — and most of the team’s — look to be unaffected by this Google Photos missing gesture bug.

Google Photos missing gesture bug

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Avatar for Abner Li Abner Li

Editor-in-chief. Interested in the minutiae of Google and Alphabet. Tips/talk: