Google would really love it if you were using Google+, and this year it’s really been stepping up its effort to lure users to its platform. That’s led to it making some decisions we found pretty questionable, like instead of giving users the ability to apply more photo filters at an app level, instead demanded they upload their pics to Google+ in order to take advantage of the company’s impressive “Auto Awesome” processing. The idea of an emphasis on services rather than software is no more appealing to us now than it was then, but our hearts are at least softened for the moment as we learn of two new cute holiday/winter Auto Awesome effects, rolling out now.
Do you like animated GIFs? Sure, who doesn’t? Well, upload a photo of something with elements that might sparkle (candles, decorations, et al), or of a snowy scene, and Google+ will deliver an Awesome-ized version with animated effects: either making those sparkly bits actually sparkle, or animating-in a snow shower.
Of course, that means that these files can get pretty large, pretty fast, so keep an eye on that kilobyte count as you share the results with friends and family.