Photo hosting is an increasingly popular way to share photos online with friends and family. You can join a photo hosting site for a nominal annual fee or use a free one.
Most paid photo hosting websites offer a free trial period so you can try the service before making a commitment. Some sites offer both free & premium hosting.
The free photo hosting services are fine but may have limitations as to how many galleries you can create or how many images you can upload each month. Most free services show advertising in galleries.
Hosting sites offer a variety of ways to upload images to galleries, either one or multiple images at a time. During the upload process, the software automatically creates 3, 4 or more different sized versions of each photo. Gallery visitors who are on a dial-up connection can choose to view small or medium sized images that load faster into web pages than large one.
Most services give you the option of viewing one image at a time or as a slideshow.
If you’ve edited photos so that EXIF data is preserved, the data can be accessed when viewing photos online. You can also enter additional information such as title, caption and date.
All photo hosting sites provide options to control who views your online galleries. Public galleries can be viewed by anyone. However, if you want to limit who takes a peek at you photos, there are privacy settings. If password protection is offered, only a person with the password can gain access to a private gallery.
Other online photo hosting services
A number of sites offer printing services to order prints of any photo online. If available, you can order framed or canvas photos, photo books and even personalize T-shirts, mouse pads, mugs, puzzles and real postage stamps with your favorite picture.