How To Clean Up My Phone Memory

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© Provided by Business Insider You can clear your iCloud storage on your iPhone, iPad and by going to the iCloud website on your Mac. SOPA Images/Getty Images

If you’re not ready to buy a new Android phone and you don’t have a microSD where you can move your data, you can probably pick up a lot of space with only a little bit of house cleaning. My 5230 is working fine except that its phone memory is gradually getting used up by its own. I am not using the phone mem for any storage. Still the memory is as low as 20mb. Please suggest me a way to clean up my phone memory without losing my personal data and settings. Power off your phone completely. Then hold the volume up button and the power button together and keep holding them until you see a screen that says something like 'system reset'. Go to system wipe, then press the power button once. That should factory reset your phone. This is one of the best ways to speed up your iPhone in just a couple short steps. You can clear RAM on any iPhone model, including older phones like the iPhone 6, to the latest iPhone X and 11. Here’s how to clear RAM on your phone to make it faster.

  • You can clear an iCloud account's storage in several ways to free up space and avoid having to pay for extra storage.
  • Apple gives you 5 GB of iCloud storage with the purchase of one of its devices, and that can fill up fast.
  • Most often, your iCloud storage goes towards backing up your photos, files, voice memos, apps, and text messages.

Unless you pay for an iCloud subscription, Apple gives you 5GB of storage with any device's purchase. That's not a lot of space, and you can quickly find that you don't have enough room for your photos, iCloud Drive files, and other data from your phone or tablet.

You can upgrade your iCloud subscription, but it's cheaper to clear out space in your iCloud account. You can delete files, photos, app backups, voice memos, and more from your iCloud Drive directly on your Apple device or through the iCloud website.

Typically, these things and all their associated data get backed up to iCloud by default. This can be both a blessing and a curse, particularly if the things you want to be backed up take up a lot of storage space. But you can save a substantial amount of space by disabling automatic backups, especially when it comes to your largest apps.

You can also delete text messages and any of the videos or images attached to them. While deleting individual texts won't save much space, you can remove entire conversations and the media associated with them, which can help significantly.

Here's how to clear your iCloud storage and free up more space.

How To Clean Up My Phone Memory Card

How to clear iCloud storage

Delete photos from iCloud storage

By default, iCloud backs up all your photos and videos to the cloud. Over time, that adds up to a lot of pictures. You can save space by deleting any images you no longer want. It's possible to do this from your iPhone, iPad, or the iCloud website. As long as Google Photos is enabled, any pictures you delete in one location are automatically deleted everywhere. Here's how to delete photos from iCloud.

Delete files and folders from the iCloud website

1. Open iCloud.com in a browser.

2. Log in with your Apple ID.

3. Click 'iCloud Drive.'

4. To delete a folder, select it and then click the Delete icon.

5. To delete files, double-click a folder.

6. Hold down CTRL while clicking each file.

© Dave Johnson/Business Insider You can remove a single or multiple iCloud files using the CTRL-key. Dave Johnson/Business Insider

Clean Up My Phone Memory

7. Select the Delete icon.

Delete unwanted files in iCloud Drive from your iPad or iPhone

1. On your iPhone or iPad, launch the Files app.

2. Tap 'Browse' at the bottom of the screen.

3. In the Locations section, select 'iCloud Drive.'

© Dave Johnson/Business Insider You can delete files and folders to free up space in iCloud using the Files app on your iPhone or iPad. Dave Johnson/Business Insider

4. To delete an entire folder, tap 'Select' in the screen's top right.

5. Then, choose the folder and tap the Delete icon.

6. To delete files, open the folder they're contained in.

7. Use 'Select' to choose files and delete them.

© Dave Johnson/Business Insider Select each file you want to delete and then send them to the trash. Dave Johnson/Business Insider

Delete app backups from iCloud on your iPhone or iPad

1. Start the Settings app on your iPhone or iPad.

2. Tap your account name at the top of the screen.

3. Select 'iCloud.'

4. Choose 'Manage Storage' on the next screen.

5. Tap 'Backups.'

6. A list of your Apple devices being backed up to iCloud will appear. Select the name of the device you are currently using.

7. In the Choose Data to Back Up section, you should now see a list of the five apps that take up the most space on iCloud.

8. Turn off the backup feature for any of these apps by swiping the button to the left.

© Dave Johnson/Business Insider You can save a lot of storage space by not backing up your largest apps. Dave Johnson/Business Insider

9. To see more options and disable more apps by tapping 'Show All Apps.'

10. Repeat this process for any of your other Apple devices from that respective device.

Delete voice memos from iCloud on your iPhone or iPad

1. Start the Voice Memos app on your iPad or iPhone

2. Swipe a voice memo to the left.

3. Tap the Delete icon.

© Dave Johnson/Business Insider You can delete any voice memo, but you'll need to remove it from the Recently Deleted section to reclaim the space immediately. Dave Johnson/Business Insider

4. Select 'Recently Deleted.'

5. Tap the recording you just deleted.

6. Choose 'Delete' to permanently remove the voice memo, which will be erased on its own after 30 days.

Delete text messages and their large attachments on an iPhone or iPad

1. On your iPhone or iPad, start the Messages app.

2. Locate a conversation that has attachments you want to remove.

3. Select the person's name at the top of the screen.

4. Choose 'Info.'

© Dave Johnson/Business Insider A contact's info can often be found by tapping the 'i' icon. Dave Johnson/Business Insider

5. On the Details page, photos should appear in a grid. Scroll and tap the 'See All Photos' link below them.

6. Tap 'Select' at the top of the screen.

7. Select each photo you want to remove.

8. Tap 'Delete.'

9. Go to the iMessage app.

10. Select the text thread you want to delete.

11. Swipe it to the left.

© Dave Johnson/Business Insider This method will delete an entire conversation, including all its photo and video attachments. Dave Johnson/Business Insider

12. Tap 'Delete.'

Related coverage from Tech Reference:

Do you feel like your phone is a cluttered mess? Follow these 10 easy steps to declutter your phone, feel organized, and live a smarter, calmer life.

Like pretty much everyone these days, your phone is probably your lifeline. It’s your way to connect with others, to find answers on the internet and to get more done. Chances are, you’re even reading this post from your phone RIGHT NOW.

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But take a look at your apps on your phone. Do you ever feel like you can’t really find what you’re looking for?

Do you feel like your phone is a cluttered mess?

Do you have apps on your phone you don’t even remember downloading and aren’t sure what they even do?

If your smartphone looks more like a junk drawer(which is a whole other project we won’t even get into right now), let’s get it cleaned up and cleared out! Let’s organize what we actually need and eliminate the rest.

10 Simple Ways to Declutter Your Phone

Ready to get started? It’s time to declutter your phone and maximize usage to get more done!

1. Delete Unused Apps

We’ve all downloaded an app only to discover it wasn’t as useful as we once thought, or it outlives our need for it. Like cleaning out and purging your home of stuff you no longer need, purging your phone of apps you no longer use will keep your phone running fast and clutter-free.

Who has time to look through a bunch of random apps just to find the ONE they need?

If you use an iPhone, you can see how much you’ve accessed an app in the last week by going to your battery and looking at the usage in the settings section. For Android phones, you can install an app usage tracker like Frequency or QualityTime and then monitor your usage over a few weeks. If you don’t want to install yet another app, most Android phones also show app usage in the settings section.

Delete all the stuff you don’t use.

2. Hide Less Frequently Used Apps

You probably have a few apps and tools on your phone you may use less frequently, but use on occasion. These might be photo editing apps, games or proprietary apps that are pre-installed on your phone with the operating system. Some of these apps we’re not even able to delete and others may come in handy down the road.

For Android, install an app hiding app like Nova Launcher or Apex Launcher which allows you to store your apps in “drawers” so they won’t clutter up your home screen. Depending on your phone model, you may be able to create your own app folders and/or move apps off the main screen. Regardless of your approach, reevaluate how cluttered your phone feels every few months, then delete any apps you can.

How To Clean Up My Phone Memory

3. Create Folders

Creating folders will help you keep everything organized on your home screen. Create a bunch of folders or go with a few, depending on your organization style. You can create folders based on usage or type of app…or any system you find useful! (More on that in a bit.)

Folders help keep your phone from becoming cluttered and distracting. I find it’s even helpful to put time-eaters like Facebook and Instagram into folders. That way, it’s not the first app I automatically open on my phone.

Move app icons into the various folders by simply holding and dragging them.

4. Organize Apps by Task

If it fits your organizational style, you can create folders based on what your various apps do. For example, create a scheduling folder, an organizing folder, a communication folder, etc.

You can create folders for workout, health and fitness apps. You can create folders based on your work tasks, filled with apps you use for your office work. If you’re a blogger, you may want to create folders for your content management app, your notes, Pinterest and other tools you access from your phone.

Organizing apps by the task can help you find exactly what you need when you need it. It also keeps you focused on the task at hand. You won’t get tempted to check social media when you’re really attempting to access your banking app.

Want more de-cluttering tips? Our simple but effective Clutter Free Cheat Sheet will help you eliminate clutter once and for all. It’s free, but only for a limited time! Get it here.

5. Organize Apps by Usage, with Emojis, and More

You can also organize folders by usage. Create folders for your most frequently used apps and your less frequently used apps. Move those less-used folders to another screen to really declutter your phone and make it accessible.

On your iPhone, you can organize your folders using emojis, which are cute and visually appealing. Use the runner emoji to name the folder for your health and fitness apps. Use the typewriter or pen for your blogging apps. Use a phone emoji to represent communication tools. There are tons of cute emojis to use and it certainly makes app filing more fun!

If you prefer not to use folders, consider organizing apps alphabetically. This is a straightforward and easy to find method (and Android phones may already alphabetize apps in the app tray). You can also organize apps on your screen by color. If you’re a visual person, this is a quick and appealing way to find apps, especially if you’re very familiar with the appearance of the app icon.

6. For iPhones, Organize Your Dock & Home Screen

Keep your home screen and your dock organized by storing only the apps you use MOST often. On your home screen (the initial screen that opens when you unlock your iPhone), keep the number of apps to 6-9. Put your four most frequently used apps in your dock.

I find keeping my organizational and key communication tools such as my calendar, notes, texts, and email on my home screen works the best, but you may prefer other apps you use most frequently. Keep the number of apps on your home screen whittled down to the most useful and frequently used.

Other apps should get stored on secondary or tertiary screens that you scroll to less often. They’ll still be easy to access, but you won’t need them constantly on your radar.

How Do I Clean Up My Phone Memory

7. For Android, Keep Your Home Screen Minimal

Android users can access all their apps from the Apps section/tray/drawer. For most, they’re sorted alphabetically, but Samsung users’ apps are sorted by most recent downloads. Keeping your home screen organized to only the apps you use regularly will really help you declutter your phone too.

How To Clean Up My Phone Memory In Android

Limit your home screen to 6-9 apps. Like iPhone users, focus on organizational and key communication tools you use the most often. You may want to include your email, texting and other tools you use frequently.

Store your less-frequently used apps on other screens. You’ll still be able to access everything by scrolling through your app tray or by visiting another screen, but your home screen will become your go-to hub for productivity.

8. Use Cloud Storage

To save memory on your phone, back up information to the cloud. Evaluate your highest areas of memory usage—usually photos, documents, music and video files, and store them in a cloud service rather than on your phone.

For Android users, check outDropbox, Amazon Drive, Microsoft OneDrive, and Google Drive. (They may already be preloaded on your phone.) iPhone users can use iCloud or OneDrive as well. Google Drive for iOS and Dropbox is also available for iPhone.

Some cloud services are free, but most require a monthly fee depending on the size of your files. Fortunately, the fees are nominal. If you use a cloud service for your computer, you can typically use the same for your phone, and it’s covered under your monthly charge.

How To Clean Up My Phone Memory

9. Stream Music

When you use a music streaming service, there’s really no reason to clog up your phone with MP3 files. Almost any music you want to hear is available. Spotify is one of the most popular streaming services with a free version (with ads) or a $10/month and ad-free service for $15/month for families.

Apple Music, Pandora, and Soundcloud are all popular options as well. Most streaming services offer such a huge variety of music, suggestions, and extras, you won’t miss MP3s at all.

The great deal about streaming is there’s no extra storage for your phone. It feels strange at first, especially for those of us who grew up purchasing albums. You don’t “own” the music, but you can access it anytime and it’s all available from your phone.

10. Back up Photos & Delete

Another huge source of phone clutter is photos. In this digital age, we take more photos in two minutes than the entire world snapped in the entirety of the 1800s! The number of photos taken to date is in the trillions! That’s a lot of photos.

Here’s the thing, though: it’s tough to narrow down photos and even delete them, especially photos of our kids. Many of us want to keep every single moment, even if their eyes are closed or if they’re making a weird (but cute!) faces. It’s hard to narrow down photos, but keeping so many also diminishes the importance of truly special photos.

Narrow down your photos. Delete duplicates and bursts. Keep only the best of the best. Then move your photos to a photo storage service like Google Photos, Snapfish or Flickr. Back up your photos rather than keeping them on your phone. Use print services such as Shutterfly(or even Walgreens and Costco) to create keepsake photo books, if you prefer to tangible pictures.

This single action alone will drastically improve your phone’s performance and declutter your phone.

BONUS Declutter your phone tip: Take a Tech Break

Smartphones are amazing, but it’s also important we recognize when we need to take a break from technology. With this much access to the outside world, it’s hard to put away the noise and focus on what you need to do.

If you feel like you’re constantly checking social media or your email, turn off your notifications. In most emergencies, people will call you. Instead of making yourself always accessible and available, learn to take back your time and focus on life in front of you.

Remember the days when you’d call someone and if they weren’t home, you’d leave a message? Then you’d get a call back at their leisure. It’s perfectly okay to go back to those times. Mute your phone when you’re doing something important (or don’t want to hear it). Turn off your notifications and check only occasionally. Once a week, take a tech break for at least a few hours—if not the whole day. Give yourself and your phone a rest.

Our phones are awesome tools to help us lead better, more productive lives. Keeping your phone organized and apps prioritized will help. Declutter your phone, so it truly becomes a tool to help you live a smarter (and calmer) life!

To recap, here are 10 Simple Ways to Declutter Your Phone

1. Delete Unused Apps
2. Hide Less Frequently Used Apps
3. Create Folders
4. Organize Apps by Task
5. Organize Apps by Usage, with Emojis, and More
6. For iPhones, Organize Your Dock & Home Screen
7. For Android, Keep Your Home Screen Minimal
8. Use Cloud Storage
9. Stream Music
10. Back up Photos & Delete

Other decluttering tips you’ll love:

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Ruth Soukup is dedicated to helping people everywhere create a life they love by follwing their dreams and achieving their biggest goals. She is the host of the wildly popular Do It Scared podcast, as well as the founder of Living Well Spending Less® and Elite Blog Academy®. She is also the New York Times bestselling author of six books, including Do It Scared®: Finding the Courage to Face Your Fears, Overcome Obstacles, and Create a Life You Love, which was the inspiration for this book. She lives in Florida with her husband Chuck, and 2 daughters Maggie & Annie.
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