If you’re looking for advice on how to declutter your iPhone, it’s possible that you’re facing one or more issues that are part and parcel of having an iPhone for a few years.
Your iPhone probably has 64 GB or 128 GB of storage space, at least, when you buy it. Over a few months or a year, that tends to fill up quickly. Photos, videos, apps and their data, and even emails and messages can account for a bulk of used storage on your iPhone.
Even with the power of your fancy Bionic chip, your iPhone is prone to occasional performance slowdowns due to low storage. Decluttering your iPhone involves going through a series of steps to address all possible issues that are likely keeping your phone from performing to its potential.
Let’s look at each of them one by one.
Remove or Offload Unused Apps
Let’s get this straight. Your photos and videos are not the biggest culprits when it comes to a cluttered iPhone experience. It’s actually the apps on your phone.
Intentionally or not, you generally tend to install and forget more apps than you actually need. This eats up valuable space on your phone and it’s not easy to get into the habit of being on top of it always. Hence, follow the steps below to remove or organize apps on your iPhone.
Use the Offload function
A new feature in iOS is the ability to ‘offload’ apps instead of deleting them permanently. What this does is remove the app from your phone and free up the associated storage space, but still keep the app data on the cloud if you decide to install the app back in the future.
You can do this automatically by going to Settings > iTunes & App Store > Offload Unused Apps.
Or if you want more control, you can choose individual apps and offload them one by one.
Delete Unwanted Apps
If you’re not one for offloading and want to permanently delete less-used apps and their data from your device, head to Settings and scroll down all the way to the bottom to see a list of all the apps installed on your iPhone.
Tap the app you want to delete and select Delete App from the next screen.
Streamline Notifications and Email Clutter
The next stage in decluttering your iPhone and achieving a cleaner experience is to stop app notifications that aren’t important and tackle unnecessary emails.
Firstly, decide which apps aren’t important enough to disturb you with every single notification. Then go to Settings > Notifications and stop those apps from displaying notifications.
Secondly, you should unsubscribe from senders whose emails are not relevant anymore. Ideally, you should hit the unsubscribe button the first time you see an unwanted email. You can do this by opening every such email and finding the unsubscribe button or by using the built-in Unsubscribe button in your iPhone’s default Mail app.
There are many intelligent third-party apps that can automatically separate important emails from junk and keep learning from your actions to become better at their job.
Get Rid of Duplicate Photos
iOS 13 onwards, iPhones have the feature of identifying similar photos that helps you remove duplicate ones. But for a more effective result, you might want to trust a third-party app pr service.
Apps like Cleaner on iOS and Photos Duplicate Cleaner on Mac are popular solutions that automatically and regularly remove duplicate photos from your phone, provided you’re using iCloud Photo Library.
You should also check out large videos occupying storage space by heading over to the Photos app and finding Videos in Albums. Select the ones you don’t want anymore and delete them.
Check Your Storage Regularly
Apple’s Storage Management has gotten better and better with newer versions of iOS. Your iPhone can give you a clear view of what is using the most storage on your device, categorized by the type of data like Apps, Media, System, etc.
Simply navigate to Settings > General > iPhone Storage to see a breakdown of your overall device storage. You’ll also be able to see an app-wise breakdown and suggestions like Review Large Attachments and the previously discussed Offload Unused Apps that can help you free up space quickly.
Avoid Hoarding Messages and Voicemails
You’ll be surprised to know that even your iMessage and Voicemails can be a big culprit when it comes to running out of storage space. People who’re not in the habit of deleting messages and voicemails suffer from this issue the most.
To avoid this, get into the habit of deleting messages from your iMessage app at least once a week. Maybe on a weekend when you have a few seconds to spare.
Additionally, whenever you’re reminded by your phone that your Voicemail inbox is 90% full, go to your voicemail page and delete the unwanted messages and delete them from the Deleted Messages folder too.
Limit Automatic Downloads
Your iPhone automatically downloads all your music, apps, books, and other data from all your other Apple devices. This is a useful feature but can end up filling up chunks of space with data you did not specifically want on your phone.
To avoid this, go to Settings > iTunes & App Store, and under the Automatic Downloads heading, uncheck the categories you don’t want to automatically get downloaded on your iPhone from other devices.
And that’s about it. With these simple steps and habits, you’ll rarely experience a slow iPhone and almost always have a decluttered phone in your hands. Make sure to address each of these areas and help friends and family who might not be aware of these handy solutions.
And if you’re still experiencing issues with your iPhone after following all the steps discussed, there might be a serious issue at play. You can always contact an authorized Apple repair service like iDevice Repair and get a quick estimate of your iPhone repair on call.