7 tricks to free up storage space on your iPhone
Published 25/04/2016 | 08:11
Do you always run out of space on your iPhone? Maybe you're trying to take new photos, film videos, install apps or download music. Or perhaps you want to install iOS 9.3, but don’t have the 5GB of spare memory needed. We've compiled a guide on how to clear some room on your handset.
1. Find out how much space you actually have left
To find out exactly how much spare capacity you have, and to see which apps are using the most, open your settings app then click on the "general" tab and select "usage".
After a few moments of doing sums, your phone will show a list of apps and how much storage space each is using. This will alert you to anything which is being overly greedy.
In the image to the right you can see that the main offender on our ageing iPhone 5C is photographs, which take up almost 5GB of the roughly 13GB available. Incidentally, this phone is the 16GB model but only 13GB is available because the rest is taken up with operating system files. Similarly, you would only have around 29GB available on a 32GB model.
So now you know what is taking up the most space, but what can you do about it?
2. Backup your photos
If you are using iCloud to backup your photos, you can delete them from your camera roll and create more space on your phone. Of course, if you do this, you are then relying on iCloud to keep them safe. Having a backup on a home computer is a wise precaution. You can delete them one-by-one, or click "select" from the camera roll screen, tick as many as you want, and delete them in bulk.
3. Remove unused apps
Unused apps can accumulate over months and years. Have a scroll through your menu: are there any games that you're bored of, any apps that are no longer useful? Tap and hold the icon and a small cross will appear in the top-left. Press that cross and you will delete the app, clearing more space.
4. Manage your music
If you're like me, your musical taste will be fickle. One week I'll listen to an album constantly on loop, but the next I'll be completely sick of it. Delete unwanted albums to make more room - they'll still be available on your computer if you want them back at a later date. To delete music, swipe a song from right to left, and a "delete" button will appear.
5. Delete videos when you've watched them
Videos take up far more room than albums. Just a few films will take up several GB of your memory. I often upload a few for long journeys, but delete them afterwards to clear space.
6. Clear files downloaded to apps
Some apps are capable of downloading files: iPlayer, for instance, can download programmes so that you can watch them later. If you have videos downloaded that you no longer want to watch, go into the app and ditch them. The usage list above should alert you to any apps that are taking up a suspiciously large amount of space.
7. Limit podcasts
Podcasts are great: regular, new content, delivered to your phone automatically. But they can accumulate quickly. In the "podcasts" section of the settings you can tweak some settings to limit the space they take up. Under "limit episodes" you can choose to have only the most recent 2, 3 or 5 episodes. You can also choose to automatically delete played episodes.