How to Free up Space on iPhone Without Deleting Photos or Apps

Apps and saved media can quickly clog up your phone’s storage. While you can always delete them when your device gets full, it’s also possible to free up space on iPhone or iPad without deleting photos or apps. In this post, we’re going to look at 13 ways you can do this. It’s good to make a habit of performing these steps regularly so that your phone keeps running smoothly without any memory issues. Let’s begin!

13 Ways to Free up iPhone or iPad Space Without Deleting Photos or Apps

#1. Get Rid of “Other Data”

“Other” data on your iOS device can often run into several hundred MBs. It primarily consists of documents and data from various apps. Removing them is one easy way to free up space on iPhone and iPad.

But keep in mind that with normal usages of your device, this ‘other’ storage will again build up and occupy space.

#2. Clear Safari History and Website Data on iPhone

  1. Open the Settings app
  2. Scroll down and tap on Safari.Open Settings and Tap on Safari on iPhone
  3. Tap on Clear History and Website Data. Confirm your action.Clear Safari History and Website Data in Safari Settings on iPhone

Pro Tip: If you do not use reading list much, turn off the toggle for Automatically Save Offline.

#3. Empty Recently Deleted

Yes, the title says ‘without deleting photos.’ But what about the images and videos you have already deleted, but still they are sitting in the recently deleted section and occupying space. Let’s address it.

  1. Open Photos app
  2. Tap on Albums from the bottom row
  3. From end tap Recently Deleted.Open Photos App Tap on Album and Then Tap on Recently Deleted
  4. Tap Select from the upper right
  5. Tap Delete All. Confirm.Empty Recently Deleted Photos from iPhone

#4. Don’t Double Save Photos

If you use HDR mode on your iPhone, two photos are automatically saved on your iOS device. While one is an HDR version, the other is a normal one. Hence, you need to make sure that you don’t keep normal photos.

  1. Open the Settings app
  2. Scroll down and tap Camera.Open Settings and Tap on Camera on iPhone
  3. Make sure Keep Normal Photo is turned OFF.Turn Off Keep Normal Photo on iPhone

Note: You will not see this setting on iPhone 11, 11 Pro, and 11 Pro Max.

#5. Don’t Store Text Messages Forever

It’s better to delete messages regularly. And, there is an option to get it done automatically with ease.

  1. Open the Settings app → Tap on Messages.
  2. Tap on Keep Messages.Open Settings Tap on Messages and Then Tap on Keep Messages on iPhone
  3. Select 30 Days for most effectiveness. You may also choose 1 year.Turn ON Automatically Delete Messages After 30 Days on iPhone

Apart from this, you may also manually delete the message conversations to free up space on your iPhone.

#6. Delete iMessage Apps

Someday you may have installed an iMessage app for creating a poll or playing a game with your friend. If you no longer need it, then it is better to delete the iMessage apps and empty some space. Since these apps are not visible on the home screen, people usually forget about them clandestinely hogging space.

#7. Remove Offline Reading List Safari Data

  1. Open the Settings app → Tap on General.
  2. Next, tap on iPhone Storage.open settings tap on general and tap iphone storage
  3. Tap on Safari.
  4. Swipe right to left on Offline Reading List and tap on Delete.Delete Offline Safari Reading List Data on iPhone

#8. Remove Media from WhatsApp and Other Chat Messages

Instant messaging apps like WhatsApp, Hike, etc. save two copies of the same picture or video. One is saved to Photos app on the iPhone, and the other is still saved in the chat itself. So deleting the entire chat or removing the photo from going to the media section of an individual group/person chat will free up tons of space.

#9. Disable Photo Stream on iPhone

Photo Stream uploads and shows the recent 1000 photos of the last 30 days on all your Apple devices. You may choose to turn it off or delete photos from My Photo Stream.

#10. Delete Played Podcasts

Podcasts are fun, and thus we have a list of the best Podcast apps for iPhone and iPad. Apple’s Podcast app is also excellent. However, there are chances that all the played downloaded episodes are still occupying space. Let us fix this.

  1. Open the Settings app
  2. Tap Podcasts.Open Settings and Tap on Podcasts on iPhone
  3. Turn ON Delete Played Episodes.Delete Played Podcasts Episodes on iPhone
  4. From now, after you have played an episode, it will be automatically deleted after 24 hours

#11. Enable Optimized Storage for Apple Music

Apple Music downloads may be taking a huge amount of space on your iPhone. If you prefer, you may choose how much space you want to allow for offline music. This is a great handy feature to manage and optimize your iPhone storage.

#12. Update the Device

This is not a full-proof solution, but several iOS updates reduce the overall space taken by the system. You might have seen YouTube videos for new iOS updates where the YouTuber talks about how much space he got back or how much extra storage this particular update has taken.

So, at times updating your iPhone can be a solution. But again, an iOS update needs a certain amount of free space, before it can be installed. So, yes, this is a kind of egg and chicken scenario. But the more you know, the better!

Alternatively, if you have downloaded an iOS update but not installed it, you may delete the file and get a lot of free space.

#13. Reset your iPhone

You may also get free space after resetting the device. But this is an extreme and kind of illogical for most of you reading this. Reset deletes all apps, app data, media, and the rest of the things. So obviously, it will free up space!

Signing Off…

Remember that even actions such as creating new stickers, making Animoji and Memoji, sending pictures on chat, downloading a voice note, getting new sticker sets in a chat app, etc. occupy space on your iPhone. So, if you have an iPhone with 16 GB or 32 GB of internal storage, you may want to cut down these actions to save space.

Another option is to use Google Photos for unlimited storage on the cloud and remove the actual files from the iPhone. Finally, you may also try out some cleaner apps for iPhone. Let us know in the comments below if you have any other ways of optimizing your device storage.

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The founder of iGeeksBlog, Dhvanesh, is an Apple aficionado, who cannot stand even a slight innuendo about Apple products. He dons the cap of editor-in-chief to make sure that articles match the quality standard before they are published.