Are you running low on space on your iPhone or iPad? Apple’s iOS 11 offers new tricks to help you free up real estate. A setting called iPhone (or iPad) Storage shows you how much storage you’re chewing up, and then offers and even applies recommendations for freeing up space.
The Storage setting also shows you how much space is taken up by music, videos, photos, and each app you’ve installed. Tap on any app, and you can delete it or just offload it. Offloading means the app is removed but any associated documents and data are retained in case you want to reinstall it in the future. Let’s look at how you can free up space with iOS 11.
1Upgrade to iOS 11
First, make sure you’re running iOS 11 or higher on your iPhone or iPad. Go to Settings > General > Software Update. Your device will either tell you that your software is up to date or give you the option to download the latest update.
2Calculate Your Storage
Move to Settings > General > iPhone (or iPad) Storage. Wait a short while, and iOS calculates and then displays how much space is taken up by different categories, such as apps, photos, and music.
3Review Apple’s Recommendations
Under the graph showing used and total storage are various recommendations for freeing up space. Swipe down to review them all. One such recommendation may be to upload your photos and videos to iCloud so they’re not taking up as much space on your device. To put this into effect, make sure you’re on a Wi-Fi connection as the upload is likely to take awhile. Tap the Enable link next to iCloud Photo Library.
4Upload to iCloud
iOS then asks for confirmation. Tap Enable to proceed, and the upload starts.
Another recommendation may be to review videos that are taking up space to see which ones you can delete. Tap on the recommendation to Review iTunes Videos and pick the video(s) you want to remove. Delete by swiping all the way to the left. Then go back to the Storage screen.
6Review Large File Attachments
Yet another recommendation might be to review large file attachments in your text messages. Tap on the entry to Review Large Attachments, and iOS shows you all file attachments in iMessage starting with the biggest ones. Swipe left on any you want to delete. Go back to the previous screen.
7Delete or Offload Apps
Swipe down further in the list. iOS displays individual apps sorted by the amount of space taken up. Tap on a specific app.
You now have two options. You can delete the app entirely, removing the program and any associated documents or data, or you can offload the app, which dumps the program but leaves its data intact. The offload option is helpful if you plan to reinstall the app down the road and want to make sure any saved data is still accessible. Tap this option if you wish to hang onto the data.
Confirm your choice, and the app is deleted but its data stays alive. As long as the app remains available, you can always reinstall it from the App Store. Go back to the previous screen.
9Offload When Low on Space
Swipe to the top. You can tell iOS to automatically offload unused apps when you run low on space. Tap on the Enable link for that entry.
10Turn it Off
If you change your mind, go to Settings > iTunes & App Store. Swipe to the bottom of the screen and turn off the option to Offload Unused Apps.
Return to the iPhone (or iPad) Storage setting. Tap on the SHOW ALL link to see all recommendations for freeing up space. You can now review all the recommended items to see if there are any others you want to put into effect.
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