When connecting an iPhone, iPad or iPod to iTunes, we can observe the status bar, which shows the amount of free and occupied memory by category of content, including the "Other" section. The latter often takes up a significant portion of free memory. But what is stored in it? And most importantly, how to reduce it? Below we will try to answer this question.
The "Other" section contains quite a lot of different data. It stores settings, Siri voices, system data and cached files that are saved when listening to streaming music, watching videos or photos.
If you look at similar statistics on an iOS device, the system will distribute cached media files to the appropriate sections. That is why the data on the occupied memory by a certain type of content on the device and in iTunes may differ.
How can you get rid of unnecessary files and reduce the "Other" section?
Clear application cache
Some applications allow the user to clear cached files on their own. For example, in Tweetbot there is an option to reset the cache separately for each account. Carefully study the settings of the most frequently used applications.
But not all programs have this option. Unfortunately, you cannot manually reset the cache on Instagram, Facebook, WhatsApp, Viber, Dropbox, OneDrive and many other applications.
Delete offline application content
Some programs work with online content and can save some elements to the device’s memory. For example, Apple Music allows you to download songs for listening offline. One composition can occupy about 10 MB of memory depending on quality and duration.
To delete a song from the device’s memory, click on the icon with three dots and in the menu that appears, select “Delete” and then “Delete Download”. To see the general statistics of the place occupied by downloaded songs, go to Settings.> The main ones.> Storage and iCloud.> Manage and select the Music app. Click "Edit" in the upper right corner to delete unwanted songs or albums.
Another good example is Google Maps or any other navigation application that allows you to save a map of a particular area to the device’s memory. It is possible that offline maps were downloaded a long time ago and are no longer in use. By deleting them, you can free several hundred megabytes from the "Other" category.
Reset iTunes Streaming Cache
A movie or TV show you’ve purchased or rented to the iTunes Store will be cached when playing back using the Video app on an iOS device. Theoretically, at the end of content playback, the system should automatically get rid of the cache over time, but this option does not always work. If a reboot or a “hard” reboot does not clear the cache, follow these steps:
- Launch the iTunes Store on your device and go to the Collection tab.
- Scroll down to the bottom and tap on the Apple ID.
- Click Sign Out.
Then go to Settings.> Video and under Home Collection, select your Apple ID and click Sign Out.
Now force reboot the device and log in to your iTunes Store and Home Collection using your account. This should reset the Video application cache.
Disable iCloud Drive
If you store data in iCloud Drive, especially with a tariff of 200 GB or more, the iOS smart file system will cache the files stored in the cloud to speed access to them.
You can disable the service in the Settings menu.> iCloud> iCloud Drive. Disabling this option means prohibiting the storage of data in iCloud for other programs.
The system automatically deletes temporary files when there is not enough free space. An ordinary reboot also helps to get rid of unnecessary temporary data.
Reinstall apps with clogged cache
In the Settings section.> The main ones.> Storage and iCloud.> You can control the amount of memory occupied by installed applications. By choosing any program from the list you can get acquainted with the actual "weight" of the application itself and the data stored in it.
Software in which documents and data are already many times larger than the original size should be removed and re-downloaded from the App Store. This process is inconvenient due to the need to reinstall the programs, but is very effective for cleaning the internal cache of third-party applications.
Use cache cleanup utilities
The easiest way to prevent an uncontrolled increase in the volume of the Other section is to use special applications to clean temporary files. For Mac and Windows, there are several utilities that can be recommended:
- PhoneExpander for Mac
- iMyfone Umate for Mac and Windows
- PhoneClean for Mac and Windows
- iFunBox for Mac and Windows
- iMazing for Mac and Windows
- Decipher Phone Cleaner (coming soon for Mac and Windows)
If you use a jailbreak device, you won’t need a computer. You can use these programs:
- Ryan Petric’s CacheClearer
- Disk pie
Users of standard, non-jailbroken devices can try the free Battery Doctor app, which should be able to clear the cache in the future.
Delete Safari Browsing Cache
Safari stores the data of the visited web pages in a cache, in order to subsequently speed up their loading. To delete these files, go to Settings.> Safari, scroll down and select "Clear site history and data."
Third-party browsers also allow you to delete the cache. For example, in Google Chrome, the treasured cleaning button is located in the Settings menu section.> Personal data.
Remove Siri’s voices
It is likely that several Siri voices are downloaded and stored on your device. For a 16-gigabyte device, this is unacceptable luxury. To delete the downloaded voice, go to Settings.> The main ones.> Universal access.> VoiceOver> Speech.> Voice and delete unused voices using swipe from right to left.
Perform a hard reset
This is a more efficient method than a regular reboot. Hold the power button and the Home button at the same time until the Apple logo appears. This method allows you to effectively clear the cache, but they should not be abused so as not to damage the application data.
Reset all settings
According to some users, resetting all device settings successfully deletes a large amount of temporary files. To reset them, go to Settings.> The main ones.> Reset and select Reset. This action will not affect installed applications and their contents.
Restore system from backup
Many temporary files do not fall into the contents of backups, since the system has the ability to restore them yourself if necessary. Restoring from a backup can actually reduce the size of the Other section.
Reset to factory settings
This is an extreme but extremely effective measure. Reset will delete all applications and “reinstall” iOS. You will have to reinstall all the programs, fully configure the device and restore your content.
To reset to factory settings, go to Settings.> The main ones.> Reset and select "Erase content and settings."