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iPhone storage hacks: how to make the most out of your memory space

If you’ve got an Android phone and you’re running out of storage space, you can just add a microSD card. Et voila, you’ve got yourself up to 256GB of extra capacity to play with.

iPhone owners don’t have that luxury. Because Apple handsets don’t support storage-boosting cards, you’re stuck with the phone’s internal capacity.

And in an era when ever-more sophisticated apps, games and high-resolution videos take up more and take space, that can a real problem.

So what can you do to make the most of what storage you have? Read on and we’ll walk you through our space-saving tips.

1) Download iOS 10.3.2


If you haven’t downloaded iOS 10.3.2 already and you’re chafing against your storage limit, this is just the boost you need. And you won’t have to delete so much as a single photo or app to get the extra capacity.

Although not publicised by Apple, it seems that the 10.3.2 version of Apple’s software is giving iPhone owners much more capacity to play with.

In one case, a uSwitch site user and iPhone 6-owner had pretty much zero internal storage space left. But after updating their software found they had a whopping 5.5GB of free space to play with.

In the name of journalistic rigour we tested it ourselves. And can report that the story checks out. Before updating, we had just 180.2MB of space. Afterwards we had 2.76GB of space waiting to be filled, as shown in the picture above.

We won’t overburden you with how it works. But essentially, Apple has implemented a new filing system that stores data differently. And more crucially, more efficiently.

Have you downloaded ios 10.3.2 and got more storage? Let us know in the comments section.

2) Delete old Tinder messages

Those shaggy-dog flirtations that went nowhere? The unsolicited explicit photos? The badinage that made them seem good on paper, before you saw them in the flesh? Guess what? Get rid. You don’t need them now.

3) Find out which apps are taking up too much space

Close apps on iPhone

Some apps are bigger than others. You can find out which ones are taking up more than their fare share of room, by heading to ‘Settings’. Then go into the ‘General tab, followed by Storage and iCloud Usage.

Then go to ‘Manage Storage’ and you can see exactly how much each app is taking up. Find some you’re not using much? Consign them to them to the bin.

4) Clear your browser history

Spring cleaning your browser history won’t give you loads more room. But it’s still worth doing when space really is at a premium.

5) Stop saving Whatsapp pictures automatically

Whatsapp on iPhone

WhatsApp automatically saves images sent to you. That’s right. Every one.

The snap of the pizza you got sent so you’d know which one to get from the supermarket? Saved. That image of a rare Pepe that was funny for a day or two? That’s saved too.

The good news is that you don’t have to accept these images taking up space, like uninvited house guests.

Just go into WhatsApp. Then head to ‘settings’ and thence to ‘chats’. All you need to do now is ‘toggle off’ the option to ‘save to camera roll’. And you’re done.

6) Optimise your phone storage

Another handy feature of iOS 10 is a better way to optimise your phone’s storage to help you get some much-needed extra space.

You can either choose to let the ‘Optimised Storage’ feature automatically manage your mobile music collection, or you can choose to disable it and store any downloaded music locally until you say otherwise.

To switch it on, go to ‘Settings’ and select ‘Music’. Under ‘Downloads’, tap ‘Optimized Storage’ to switch it on. Then select the amount of storage space you would like to allow your music to take up before iOS removes the downloaded files for you.

7) Don't keep both photos when using HDR

iPhone 7 camera

Using the HDR mode on your iPhone will help you get amazing pictures. But it will automatically save both versions of the photo, which would mean that your photos are taking up twice the amount of room that they need to.

To change this, go to ‘Settings’, hit ‘Photos & Camera’ and deselect ‘Keep Normal Photo’. That way, you’ll stop doubling up on every photo you take.

8) Automatically delete old messages

Sometimes it can be really useful to keep a record of your conversations with people, but do you really need to keep every text you’ve ever sent and received? Probably not.

Luckily you change change your iPhone settings to automatically delete texts after either 30 days or one year.

Just go to ‘Settings’ and select ‘Messages’. Then hit ‘Message History’ and choose ‘Keep Messages’. From there, you’ll be able to choose to keep texts for either a month, a year or forever.

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Category: Features
Tagged: iphone
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