Google has 3.8 million GB of our photos (at least)

Google's new phones, tablet in :90
Google's new phones, tablet in :90

Blame it on the burst mode.

Since debuting in May, Google Photos has gobbled up 3,720 terabytes of pictures and videos -- a staggering stash of personal memories that now live in the cloud.

To put the number in context, picture this:

-- You would need 3,809,280 one-gigabyte flash drives to store all those photos. If Santa were to pile them into his sleigh, Rudolph and the crew would be dragging 119,040 pounds of the thumb drives around the world. And the bill for all those $2 stocking stuffers would come out to more than $7.6 million.

-- You would need at least 238,080 iPhone 6S devices with 16 gigabytes of storage. Without tax, that would cost $154.5 million altogether, and span about 21 miles in length when placed end to end. If you stacked the phones on top of one another, they would weigh more than 74,995 pounds, or about 16% of the heft of a grounded, un-fueled Boeing (BA) 747-8.

And that's just the photos processed by the Google Photos app when it asks users to free up space. Think about how many more pictures and videos we share through Gmail and other Google (GOOGL) services.

Google Photos is a free app that you can use on your smartphone or your computer. The program's technology detects when you might run out of space and asks you if you want to delete photos on your device that have already been saved to the cloud.

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