The “Other” category on your iPhone and iPad is basically where all of your caches, settings preferences, saved messages, voice memos, and… well, other data is stored. There is no simple way to identify and remove data in the Other storage category. With a bit of patience, you can reduce the amount of space it takes up on your iPhone or iPad. Follow the steps below to get started.

How to clear Safari caches and the offline Reading List

Some culprits that takes up Other space on your iPhone and iPad are history and website data in Safari. These are useful for accessing websites quickly, but are not a necessity.

  1. Open the Settings app.
  2. Tap General.
  3. Scroll down and tap Safari.
  4. Tap Website Data
  5. Scroll down and tap Remove all Website Data.
  6. Swipe to the left on Offline Reading List.
  7. Tap Delete. Tap iPhone [or iPad] Storage.

When you go back to your storage list, you will note that Safari no longer shows any data.

How to delete old iMessage and Mail data

When you use the Mail app, a cache of all the documents, pictures, and videos you have viewed on your iPhone or iPad are stored on your device. This makes reloading them faster the second time around. But, you don’t necessarily want to reopen that kitty GIF that your coworker sent you two years ago. So, you can remove the caches by deleting and reentering your email account information.

Similar to emails, all of the pictures and videos you receive through MMS are stored in the Other category in your storage. You can delete entire conversations, set messages to delete after a certain period of time, or delete individual images and attachments.

As of iOS 11, Apple has made it very easy to clear out these caches automatically. You can enable auto-delete for old iMessages, review large email attachments and remove them from your iPhone or iPad, offload unused apps, and delete music or movies that you’ve downloaded to your device, but don’t actively access anymore.

How to restore your iPhone or iPad from a backup

One of the biggest culprits of unusually large amounts of Other category taking up space on your iPhone or iPad is a wonky bug in the system. The best way to track down and remove corrupted files is to burn it all down and start over. Don’t worry. You can back up your device before you delete everything. That way, you can start fresh without starting over.

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