Google has updated the Google Photos app this week, and it’s a fairly substantive update — at least in comparison to the almost-weekly bug fixer updates that Google pushes to many of its apps. The new version brings the face grouping features of the well-reviewed cloud storage service to more countries…

While Google brought the ability to privately label and categorize your friends to the United States last month, many countries have gone without face grouping features completely until now. With version 1.8, these features are coming to Latin America, Canada, the Caribbean, Australia, and New Zealand, as well as part of Asia, the Middle East, and Africa.

Additionally, the 1.8 update brings “spooky” fast performance improvements (it’s always fun when Google throws in a holiday reference to its change logs), the ability to pinch to zoom when viewing search results, and the ability to hide a person from appearing under the “People” section. Here’s Google’s official change log:

  • Now in more countries: Finding the perfect photo of your best friend or family member just got easier. See similar faces grouped together in Search, and privately label faces to quickly search for the person you’re looking for. Tap the search button to get started. Face grouping will be available in Latin America, Canada, the Caribbean, Australia, and New Zealand. It will also be available in parts of Asia, the Middle East, and Africa.
  • Hide a person from appearing under People. This also prevents events with that person from appearing in “Rediscover this day” cards in the Assistant.
  • When viewing search results, pinch to zoom in and out.
  • Spooky fast performance improvements and bug fixes.

As usual, you can get Google Photos on the Play Store for free.

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Stephen Hall

Stephen is Growth Director at 9to5. If you want to get in touch, follow me on Twitter. Or, email at stephen (at) 9to5mac (dot) com, or an encrypted email at hallstephenj (at) protonmail (dot) com.