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Last Updated on February 14, 2022

5 Ways to Free up iCloud Storage on Your iPhone

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5 Ways to Free up iCloud Storage on Your iPhone

It’s such a frustrating thing for iPhone users, especially 16GB iPhone users to meet the “Not enough storage” issue when they use iCloud for further backup.

If iPhone users run out of iCloud storage, their device won’t backup to iCloud. New photos and videos won’t upload to iCloud Photo Library. iCloud Drive and other iCloud apps won’t update across their devices. They aren’t able to send or receive messages with their iCloud email address.

Therefore, it’s necessary for people to learn how to free up iCloud storage on their iPhone/iPad.

1. Delete Old iCloud Backups

When you backup your iPhone to iCloud, the most important data on your device, like documents, photos, and videos, etc. will be backed up automatically. You can delete backups and turn off Backup for your device. Please note that if you choose to delete the iCloud backup for your iOS device, iCloud will stop automatically backing up the device. Instead of backing up your iOS device to iCloud, you can back up your device using iTunes.

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1. Go to Settings > General > Storage & iCloud Usage.
2. Under iCloud, tap Manage Storage.
3. Tap the name of your device.
4. Tap Delete Backup > Turn Off & Delete.

2. Reduce the Size of iCloud Photo Library

If you use iCloud Photo Library, you can free up your iOS device’s storage by deleting photos and videos that you don’t want to store on your device all the time. After deleting, you can recover the deleted photos and videos from your ‘Recently Deleted album’ for 30 days.

If you want to remove content from your Recently Deleted album faster, tap Select, then select the items you want to remove. Tap Delete > Delete. If you exceed your iCloud storage limit, your device immediately removes any photos and videos you delete and they won’t be available for recovery in your Recently Deleted album.

3. Reduce the Size of Photo Library

If you don’t use iCloud Photo Library, your Camera Roll will be part of your iCloud backup. To check the size of the backup on your device in iOS 8 or later, tap Settings > iCloud > Storage > Manage Storage. (If you’re using an earlier version of iOS, tap Settings > iCloud > Storage & Backup > Manage Storage.) Then tap the name of your iOS device. The backup size is under Photo Library.

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You can transfer photos and videos to PC  and delete them on iPhone to reduce the size of your Photo Library backup, then back up your iOS device manually. If you want to keep the photos and videos on your iOS device, just turn off Photo Library in Backup with the steps mentioned. And just delete those unnecessary photos.

4. Delete Emails in Your iCloud

You can also delete email messages from your iCloud email account to free up and manage iCloud storage space. If you have some important emails, you can also move email messages from your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch to your Mac or PC, where they no longer count against your iCloud storage. Use the steps below to delete messages from your account.

If your iPhone is configured to access iCloud email, you can delete messages from any mailbox, then empty the Trash to free up space:

1. Swipe left across any message to delete it.

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2. Tap your Trash folder.

3. Delete messages one at a time or delete all of them by tapping Edit, then tapping Delete All.

Method 5. Upgrade Your iCloud Storage Plan

Apple only provides free 5GB for iPhone users. If 5GB for free is not nearly enough for you, you can buy more.

Apple offers three choices for you. 50GB, 200 GB and 1 TB costing $0.99, $2.99 and $9.99 respectively for one month.

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Tap on Setting > iCloud > Storage, then you can tap on Buy More Storage and choose the plan that works for you.

Featured photo credit: Jeremy Bezanger via unsplash.com

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