iOS and iPadOS analyze how much space each program uses, and thus determine how the device’s storage is used. You can also find this in the Settings menu or iTunes on your device or in Finder on your computer.
Storage Optimization iOS and iPadOS
If there is not enough free space left on the device, the system automatically frees it up when installing programs, updating iOS or iPadOS, downloading music, recordings, etc.
To increase storage, the system can delete some items, such as streaming music and, files in iCloud Drive, as well as unnecessary program elements. In addition, temporary files are deleted and the device cache is cleared. But only items that are no longer needed or can be reloaded are deleted.
Check storage with a device
Go to the Settings menu “Basic” “Storage [device]”. A list of recommendations for optimizing the device’s storage may appear, under which the installed programs will be listed and the amount of memory used by each of them will be indicated. Touch the name of the program to see how much memory it uses. The memory of cached and temporary data is not taken into account.
When viewing detailed results, you can do the following.
- Unload a program that frees up the space it occupies, but after which there will be documents and data.
- Delete the program and its associated data.
- Depending on the program, you may also need to delete some related documents and data.
If the device’s memory is almost full and it’s not possible to free up space, the warning “There is almost no space” may appear. In this case, you should check the recommendations for optimizing the storage or delete rarely used content, such ass and programs.
All content on the device is divided into categories.
- Programs: installed programs and their contents, the contents of the “On iPhone”, “On iPad” or “On My iPod touch” folder in the “Files” program, as well as Safari downloads.
- Photos: Photos ands stored in the Photos program.
- Media files: music,s, podcasts, ringtones, album art, and voice recordings.
- Mail: Email messages and their attachments.
- Apple Books: Books and PDFs in the Books program.
- Messages: messages and their attachments.
- iCloud Drive: iCloud Drive content downloaded to your device. The listed content will not be automatically deleted.
- Other: non-removable mobile resources, such as Siri voices, fonts, dictionaries, non-removable logs and cache, Spotlight indexing, as well as system data, such as Keychain and CloudKit services. Cached files cannot be deleted from the system.
- System: space occupied by the operating system. It varies by device and model.
Follow Storage Optimization Best Practices
Recommendations for optimizing device storage can be specified in the Settings menu “Storage”. Click Show All to see all recommendations for the device.
Review the description of each recommendation, then click “Enable” to use it. Or tap a recommendation to view content that can be deleted.
Check storage status using Finder or iTunes on an iOS device
- On Mac with macOS Catalina 10.15, open Finder. On a Mac with macOS Mojave 10.14 or earlier, or on a Windows computer, open iTunes.
- Connect the device to the computer.
- Select your device in Finder or iTunes. A bar will be displayed with which you can estimate the amount of device memory occupied by a particular type of content.
- Hover over the bar to see how much volume each type of content occupies.
Below is what goes into each type of content.
- Audio: songs, audio podcasts, audio books, voice memos, and ringtones.
- Video: movies,s and TV shows.
- Photos: the contents of the program “Media Library”, albums “Photographic film” and “Photostream”.
- Programs: installed programs. The contents of the programs are listed in the Documents and Data section.
- Books: iBooks, audiobooks, and PDFs.
- Documents and data: Offline reading list for Safari, installed program files, and program contents, such as contacts, calendars, messages, and email (including attachments).
- Other: settings, Siri voices, system data and cached files.
Information about cached files in the Other category
Finder and iTunes categorize cached music,s, and photos as “Other,” rather than adding them to their respective folders. Cached files are created when streaming or viewing music,s, and photos. When streaming music or, the content is stored as cached files so that it can be quickly accessed again.
When more space is required, the device automatically deletes cached and temporary files.
If the actual storage on your device is different from the one specified in iTunes or Finder
Because Finder and iTunes categorize cached files as Other, the size of the Music and folders may vary. To view data on the used memory of the device, go to the Settings menu “Basic” “Storage [device]”.
If you want to delete cached files from the device
Cached and temporary files are deleted automatically when you need to increase storage. They do not need to be deleted on their own.
- To reduce the size of your music library, enable the iCloud Music Library option and optimize your device’s storage.
- Optimize music and storage in the Settings menu “Music” “Storage Optimization.”
- Learn how storage is displayed on iOS, iPadOS, and macOS.
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