Running out of storage space on your Android device can be very frustrating, especially when you need to install new apps, take more photos/videos, or download files. Fortunately, there are several ways to free up storage space on Android. Here are some tips on how to fix the storage space running out issue on Android.
Fix the Storage Space Running Out Issue on Android
Clean Up Cache Files
Cached data from apps and system processes can build up over time and take up significant storage space. Clearing the cache can free up a lot of space. Here’s how to do it:
- Go to Settings > Storage
- Under “Other apps” or “Cached data”, tap Clean Now. This will clear cached data for all apps.
- You can also go into each app, tap Storage, and then tap Clear Cache to delete the app’s cached data specifically.
Doing this periodically can free up gigabytes of space.
Uninstall Unused Apps
Carefully go through all the apps installed on your device and uninstall any that you no longer use. This includes pre-installed apps (also called bloatware) from the device manufacturer that cannot be deleted normally.
To fully uninstall these, you may need to root your Android device first. After rooting, you can use apps like System App Remover to get rid of bloatware. Be very careful not to remove any important system apps.
Remove Duplicate Photos
The camera gallery tends to accumulate duplicated photos and similar images over time. Use the Google Photos app to find and remove duplicate photos:
- Open Google Photos and tap on the Photo Library tab.
- At the top right, tap on Group similar faces.
- Go through each group and delete any near-duplicate or unwanted photos.
This will help clear up a lot of photo storage space.
Store Photos/Videos on the Cloud
rather than locally on your device. Services like Google Photos provide free unlimited cloud photo storage for high-quality images (and paid plans for original quality uploads).
You can set it to automatically back up device folders like DCIM, Screenshots, etc. After the photos are backed up, you can delete the local copies to free up space.
Use Apps Like Files By Google
The Files app by Google helps free up space by identifying files that can be deleted safely. To use it:
- Open the Files app and tap Clean up at the bottom.
- It will analyze storage and suggest categories to remove like duplicate files, unneeded APK files, etc.
- Carefully review each category and tap Delete to free up space.
Move Files To the External SD Card
If your Android device has an SD card slot, make use of external memory to store files such as photos, videos, downloads, etc. This prevents filling up the internal storage quickly.
- Insert the SD card and open the Files app.
- Locate the files you want to move and tap the three-dot menu.
- Select Move to and choose the SD card folder to move them.
Make this a habit for downloads, camera photos/videos, offline music, etc.
Delete Unused Downloads & Files
Downloads, older offline media files, Android backups, and other file types can often build up and eat storage space. Periodically review and delete what’s no longer needed via the Files app.
Also clear large cached data from streaming apps or any app caches that grow huge over time.
Enable Storage Manager
Many Android devices from Samsung, Xiaomi, OPPO, etc. have a built-in storage manager. Enable this to:
- Automatically delete residual/temp files
- Remove cached app data periodically
- Compress rarely used apps
- Recommend deleting unneeded files
This keeps regular storage usage optimized without you having to manually clean up space.
Change Camera Settings
Camera photo and video settings like resolution, image size, etc. affect how much space each picture/video consumes. Set these to lower resolutions if storage is critically low.
- Open Camera app > Settings gear icon
- Choose the appropriate Format and Size options
- Choose Main Back Camera > Picture Size and reduce to around 10MP or lower
- Similarly, adjust video resolution to 720p or lower
Lower-quality media uses much less space but can be increased later when space expands.
Set App Save Locations
Certain apps let you choose where to save files. Set them to save on the SD card rather than internal storage:
- Netflix – App Settings > Download Location
- Spotify – Settings > Storage > Audio cache location
- YouTube – Settings > Downloads > Storage location
Configure as many apps as possible like this.
Adopt Wireless Transfer Habits
When low on-device storage, transfer files wirelessly instead of copying to the device:
- Use cloud services like Google Drive or Dropbox to upload files and share or access them later from apps/PCs.
- Stream media via apps instead of downloading to local storage
- Transfer files via Bluetooth or WiFi Direct
- Access files and media stored on home PCs/Macs remotely from mobile
Develop wireless transfer habits to minimize the use of precious internal storage.
Check for OTA Updates
Android OTA (over-the-air) updates can sometimes get stuck during installation and consume gigs of space unnecessarily.
Check Settings > System > Advanced > System Update to see the status of any pending updates. Tap Download and install if stuck. Failing that, factory reset the phone to fix frozen updates.
Factory Reset As Last Resort
If all else fails, perform a factory reset to start fresh and reclaim all storage space. Backup data first before resetting. Make sure to selectively reinstall apps after, not everything together.
Be vigilant about keeping storage optimized going forward. Follow the tips in this guide regularly to avoid repeat storage crunch.
Running out of storage on Android can be stressful but is manageable with some proactive maintenance. Follow the tips outlined in this article to reclaim space by uninstalling unused apps and files, cleaning caches, using cloud storage, enabling storage manager, changing camera settings, and developing wireless transfer habits. Be vigilant going forward to avoid repeat storage shortage issues.
Mustafa Al Mahmud is the founder and owner of Gizmo Concept, a leading technology news and review site. With over 10 years of experience in the tech industry, Mustafa started Gizmo Concept in 2017 to provide honest, in-depth analysis and insights on the latest gadgets, apps, and tech trends. A self-proclaimed “tech geek,” Mustafa first developed a passion for technology as a computer science student at the Hi-Tech Institute of Engineering & Technology. After graduation, he worked at several top tech firms leading product development teams and honing his skills as both an engineer and innovator. However, he always dreamed of having his own platform to share his perspectives on the tech world. With the launch of Gizmo Concept, Mustafa has built an engaged community of tech enthusiasts who look to the site for trusted, informed takes on everything from smartphones to smart homes. Under his leadership, Gizmo Concept has become a top destination for tech reviews, news, and expert commentary. Outside of running Gizmo Concept, Mustafa is an avid traveler who enjoys experiencing new cultures and tech scenes worldwide. He also serves as a tech advisor and angel investor for several startups. Mustafa holds a B.S. in Computer Science from HIET.