This Genius iPhone Storage Hack Will Free up More Storage Instantly

woman looking at iphone

 Karl Tapales / Getty Images

Picture this: You're at a concert, and the lead singer pauses to take a quick photo with you, and you're hit with the dreaded pop-up "Cannot Take Photo." Infuriating, right? Even worse, you're stranded and need to download a new ridesharing app since the Uber app is down. And guess what? You don't have enough "Storage Capacity" to do that. The iPhone might be the smartest phone on the block, but it's teeny tiny storage capacity is the stuff nightmares are made of. It turns out there's a hack to finally increasing your phone's storage capacity without deleting any existing data.

Forget Your iPhone's Cloud, Tap Into Settings Instead

While it's common knowledge that your iPhone stores old backed-up content in your iCloud and unless you plan on rifling through months of app data and text messages, you don't really need them. Instead, clear old backups by following these steps: Settings > General > Storage & iCloud Usage > Manage Storage > Delete Backup.

Double up Your iPhone Storage 

Now that you've removed past files, plug your phone into your computer and do a fresh backup via iTunes. Again, make sure you follow File > Devices > Back Up, and save photos and videos. Your iPhone then automatically backs up apps in your iCloud by default. If you don't want Snapchat or Words With Friends taking up your precious data, take them off the storage list. To do that, go to Settings > General > Storage & iCloud Usage, tap Manage Storage under the iCloud section, select your device ("This iPhone"), and tap Show All Apps. You'll notice that the Photo Library is taking up a lot of space. You've just backed up your photos to your computer, so turn that off for extra storage space. 

Knowledge Is Power...or in This Case More Storage Capacity

There's a difference between iCloud and My Photo Stream. As the team at Thrillist put it, "The iCloud Photo Library is like paying to have all your photos stored in a safety deposit box, and My Photo Stream is like handing a secure copy of your photos to each of your dearest friends, and asking them to look after them for free." To set it up, go to Settings > iCloud > Photos, then turn off iCloud Photo Library and turn on My Photo Stream. 

Three simple steps and you're done! You should now have enough free storage space to do a fresh backup (Settings > iCloud > Backup, and tap Back Up Now), and now all your precious information is safe—time to enjoy your newfound storage liberation.

For a detailed guide to managing your iPhone storage, visit Thrillist

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