If you’re like many Apple users, you opened up your device today and discovered that you don’t have enough storage space for iOS 11.
iOS 11 officially clocks in at 1.7 GB, but it’s recommended that you have around 4GB of available space before downloading. For power users, that’s a big ask.
If you’re out of storage space and determined to download iOS 11, you’ll need to start making data sacrifices. Fortunately, there are many painless ways to free up storage space on your iPhone.
Start Deleting Apps
The easiest way to clear up space is simply to delete your largest – and preferably least used – apps. Luckily, checking that is quite easy.
1. Open Settings and go to “General”
2. From here, choose “Storage & iCloud Usage” and then “Manage Storage”
3. You should be looking at an overview of the storage space on your device. Alongside storage hogs, keep an eye out for any redundant apps you have (two apps that have the same purpose) as well as apps you don’t use. These are your primary targets
4. When you’ve found them, simply choose the app in question from this screen and select “Delete App”
While that’s the most efficient way to free up space, it’s not always the most practical. If you simply must keep all the apps on your phone and still need extra space, consider the following options.
Delete Messaging Photos
If you’re someone that loves sending and receiving pictures, you probably have acquired quite the library of text message images over the years.These pictures are a stealth contributor to your lack of space. Fortunately, they can be deleted.
1. Open up the conversation you want to delete images from. Choose the “Details” option on the top right.
2. Tap and hold an attached photo and select the “More” option that appears. You should now be able to select multiple images
3. Feel free to select the images you want to delete and then tap the trash can icon below. Anything you happen to have backed up elsewhere is a prime target for removal.
Bulk Delete Your Outdated Text Messages
While they don’t take up as much space as photos, text messages themselves can sometimes add up and really put a dent in your storage space. Here’s a couple of ways to deal with those.
1. The easiest way to delete a message is to tap and hold the individual message, choose the “More” option that appears, and then select the circle that appears to the left of the message. From here, you can choose to delete that message using the trash can icon or delete all messages in that conversation.
If you’re looking for a more efficient method, there is another option.
1. Go to your Settings app and open Messages.
2. Under Message history, you’ll see “Keep Messages.” This allows you to choose how long messages stay on your phone. The default setting is “Forever.”
3. If you’re feeling brave, choose “Keep Messages” and select either 1 Year or 30 Days. When you tap to confirm, you’ll delete any messages older than your selected option.
4. This is a great way to free up space – and keep messages from clogging up your phone moving forward – but make sure that you know what you’re deleting.
Remove Unnecessary Photo Saving Options
As much as we hate to say it, there’s a good chance that your photos are taking up much of the space on your phone. If you just can’t bear the thought of deleting them – or transferring them elsewhere – there are other options.
1. The easiest way to manage photos is to disable “Normal Photos” and just keep the HDR versions. To do this, go to “Settings” and then select “Photos and Camera.”
2. Here, you should see an option for “Keep Normal Photos” unless you aren’t using HDR. If you just want to keep HDR photos, de-select this option.
3. While you’re on this screen, consider disabling Photo Stream via the “My Photo Stream” option. Photo Stream allows you to sync photos automatically between iPhone and iPad. Unless this is something that you desperately need to regularly do, disabling this option can easily clear 1GB or more of space.
Subscribe to a Cloud Storage Service
This isn’t necessarily a quick way to free up space on your device, but the best long-term option is to start relying on cloud storage. From major players like iCloud, Google Drive, and Dropbox to smaller – but efficient – services like Sync, there are tons of cloud storage options out there that help you keep your phone free of clutter.
If you’re looking for a recommendation, hubiC offers 25 free GB upon signup and offers incredibly affordable additional storage if you’re in need.
Finally, here’s a few quick-hit ways to clear up a little space that may be more useful to some users more than others.
- If you take a lot of notes, you might want to go back and delete them from your notes app. Granted, these don’t take up a ton of space, but they can add up.
- Podcasts, downloaded songs, and downloaded movies are all prime targets for deletion when you’re desperate for space. Of course, finding ones that are easy to delete without hesitation can be harder.
- Gaming apps are notorious space offenders, especially if they’re constantly being updated. Be really honest with yourself regarding which games you play and which ones you don’t.
- Download songs on Spotify or movies through Netflix? Remember that the app won’t always display the amount of space those take up on the main Settings screen. Consider cleaning them yourself.
Remember that you almost always have options beyond just deleting everything on your phone when trying to free up storage space. Know of some of these options that can help your fellow users? Sound off in the comments section below.