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How to Free Up Storage Space on Your Android Device

Ran out of Android storage space? Here’s how to free up storage on Android by uninstalling big apps, removing content, and more.

App, photo, and operating system sizes are always getting larger. If you use an older Android device—or even the entry-level model of a newer device—you’ll quickly find yourself hitting the storage limit.

There’s nothing worse than whipping out your phone for a once-in-a-lifetime photo, only to be met with the dreaded Storage Full message. So how do you free up storage on Android? Keep reading for a list of tips and ideas.

1. Identify Storage-Hogging Apps

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How many of the apps currently installed on your phone do you frequently use?

Sure, we all need an email client, some social media apps, a news app, and perhaps a game or two. But do you really need that random weather widget you downloaded or the app that distorts your face to make you look like your dog? Probably not.

Recent versions of Android make it easy to see which apps are the worst offenders. Navigate to Settings > Storage > Other apps. Wait for the list to populate, then tap the menu button in the top-right corner and choose Sort by Size.

Once you know what’s taking up the most space, uninstall anything you don’t need by heading to Settings > Apps & notifications > See all X apps.

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2. Delete Offline Content

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Lots of apps let you save content on your device so you can access it when you’re offline.

For example, Spotify lets you save music directly to your phone. Some RSS readers let you save articles to read later, as do bookmarking services like Pocket. Podcast apps save audio files for offline playback, Chrome can even save webpages for offline access.

Saving content for offline use is great—if you have enough space. If you don’t, you’ll quickly start wondering where all your free space went.

A few prudent steps will fix this problem. Instead of downloading dozens of albums, try making a playlist on Spotify with just enough songs to cover your gym session or commute. Only open the notebooks you use most frequently on OneNote, and avoid downloading any huge files from cloud storage services.

To clear the offline content that you already have saved on your device, you have two options. You can clear app caches on a case-by-case basis by going to Settings > Apps and notifications > See all X apps > [App Name] > Storage and cache > Clear Cache.

Alternatively, you can use a reputable third-party tool that will clear app caches in bulk. SD Maid is one such tool.

Download: SD Maid (Free, in-app purchases available)

3. Move Photos to the Cloud

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