Last Updated on March 27, 2021 by Muhammad Junaid Khalid
We use our phones for everything – it’s a fact. They have become our music players, cameras, and maps, plus we have lots of apps for work and play. However, all that app data, pictures, and music files must go somewhere. That’s how easily space fills up! If you that dreaded “Storage space running out” notification frequently plagues you, then you must clean out your phone storage. You do need disk space for any important files and updates, so start the clean-up now. Fortunately, freeing up space on Android phones won’t hurt so much – some solutions require a bit of elbow grease, while you can automate others. Read on to find out!
1. Manage Your Photos
Let’s face it – we tend to take tons of photos and videos. Classroom notes, food, cute animals, moments with loved ones, selfies, vacation hotspots, and more abound in our phone galleries. Here’s a bunch of things to do to prevent photography storage space running out. Delete photos and videos with duplicate content, as well as those accidental snapshots.
- Get rid of old study notes you photographed. If you want to keep them around, why not transform them into a PDF and keep them on your PC?
- Go through old shared photos on apps like WhatsApp, and delete those you don’t need.
- Back up your photos and videos online or on an external drive, and delete them from your device for freeing up space in Android.
Of all these, the last point stands out as the most important. Backing up your photos means if your phone ever ends up lost, you won’t lose your memories. You can choose from all sorts of cloud storage apps like DropBox, Mediafire, OneDrive, etc. However, if you have privacy concerns, you can transfer your images from your Android phone storage to your PC and then to an external storage drive. Just ensure that you keep the external storage media in a safe place.
If you prefer cloud storage, Android phones usually come with the Google Photos app but you can go with a different one. To begin the backup using Google Photos, do the following:
Back-Up Photos to Save Phone Memory
- Launch the app and sign in, and the app then prompts you to select which quality you want to store your pictures in. The two options for quality comprise of “Original” and “High” quality. In case of original quality, the app uploads your images and videos the exact way you took them – no changes in size or resolution. This takes up space in your Google Drive, which provides only 15 GB. Purchase more space if you want to keep the files in their original condition. On the other hand, if you select high quality, the tool compresses images to a certain degree. This reduces the file size but doesn’t compromise too much on quality – good enough for sharing and posting on social media. However, if you like, you can upload selected photographs to Google Drive manually to preserve them in all their glory.
- You may change the quality setting later as needed.
- Then, tap on the menu at the top-left of the screen, select Settings > Back up & sync. Here you can edit settings to your satisfaction and wait till your photos uploaded online.
- Once all your files synchronize, Google Photos provides an option for freeing device storage by deleting the already backed-up photos and videos.
- Go back to Settings, select Free up device storage. Tap on the prompt to confirm you wish to do this. Doing this regularly prevents storage space from running out.
- You can also skip this option, and simply delete selected pictures either from the Photos app, a file manager, or using the photo gallery your phone came with. Use the select all option or long-press on a photo to enter selection mode, hit ‘Delete’, and revel in the emptiness of your phone storage. You can say that freeing up space on Android phones feels somewhat therapeutic!
2. Deleting Extra Files
If you have owned your phone for a long time, your phone storage needs a good clean now and then. Lots of files and documents build-up, leading up to storage space running out. You usually end up with hundreds of text messages, chats, shared files, e-books, and so on after a couple of months of use. One of the main culprits usually includes the Downloads folder. Files from email attachments, internet downloads, and more often end up here, sometimes including half-baked remnants of interrupted downloads.
Use your favorite file manager to see what you can clear for freeing up phone storage. To make it easier to find what needs deleting, sort files by size or type. Similarly, select and delete all those extra text messages, along with offline media from YouTube videos, maps, podcasts in Google Play Music, and other apps.
3. Remove App Data
We can’t live without our favorite apps, but they can live without caches that result in storage space running out. Depending upon your phone, the system may automatically delete it, or you may have to do this yourself. The app makes these files so that some of its processors run faster. To delete the app cache, dig around in the phone settings for the App Manager, usually under Storage depending upon your Android phone version. Tap on each app and tap the “Clear cache” button.
You can also delete the cache for the Chrome browser straight from the app as follows:
- Launch the browser, tap the three dots at the top right.
- Select History > tap on Clear Browsing Data. Check the boxes for the cache and cookies.
- Tap on “Clear data”.
4. Say goodbye to unnecessary apps
Apps act as a major cause of storage space running out since they regularly install updates and keep increasing in size as a result. Had your phone for a year or two and have phone storage woes? Narrow down your apps list and only keep the important ones. Depending upon your phone, you can also move larger apps to external storage i.e. your memory card. get rid of bloatware that usually comes bundled with newer phones.
Another method of freeing up space on Android phones comprises replacing certain apps with their lightweight versions, e.g. lite versions for Twitter, Facebook, and Messenger.
- Open the Google Play Store > tap on the triple-line menu button.
- Select My apps & games > switch to the Installed
A list of all the downloaded apps on your phone appears. Sort them by size, or by last used to make it easier to judge what you want to keep.
5. Install a Devoted Cleaning App
Freeing up space on Android phones requires some time and attention to make sure you don’t delete important data. If you want to streamline the cleaning process, you can go with an app to do the job for you. That is if you have the phone storage space to install it. The Google Play Store appears crammed with apps that claim to clean out your phone and boost its performance.
However, not all of them look trustworthy, with some crowded with advertisements and others that share your personal data. Some dependable apps do exist though, such as Google’s very own Files app, and the CCleaner, an Android version of the well-known PC app.
6. The Best Solution!
Even after you applied all the above solutions, you may still encounter low memory problems on your phone because apps are continuously updating over a period of time and acquire space. So, the best solution is to use an External Memory in the form of an SD card! and becomes tension free. Choose your SD card as a storage option in Phone Settings.
In this way, you will get a lot of extra memory (2, 8, 16, 32, 64, 128 GB, etc. according to your requirement), and most probably will never encounter low memory issues on your phone.
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