Hidden trick to free up space on your iPhone

Posted at 7:19 AM, Apr 07, 2016

As many iPhone users know, it doesn't take long to fill up your phone with apps, music, video and other data (I'm talking to you 16GB owners - amiright?)

Whether it's not being able to download the latest iOS update or just wishing you could have a few more apps, running out of space is not only common, but confusing.

You might be familiar with the Settings > General > Storage & iCloud Usage area where you can look through the apps and how much data is being used by each. This can help you free up some space to a point, but there's still mystery megabytes occupied on your phone.

That's because of a hidden data cache that collects over time from apps, web surfing, music playing, texts - whatever you've been using.

How to access that mystery cache and clear it out? That's where our trick comes in.

First step - identify how much space you have on your iPhone through the above mentioned path. I took a 16GB iPhone 6 with 598MB available on it to start.

Next, open the iTunes Store. Yes, iTunes - we're going to "rent" a movie. Don't worry, you're not actually going to pay for it. Pick a large file to make sure you don't actually get stuck with renting it.

I stumbled across Concussion, one of the New and Noteworthy, which is a sizeable file thanks to its length (Note: Not all movies are rentable - make sure you're finding one that you can rent).

Double tap the "Rent" option to act like you're renting the movie. The iOS spinning wheel will show in its place, and eventually a message will pop up that says "Not Enough Space To Rent". Don't be frustrated by this pop-up though, because what that spinning wheel was doing was clearing your cache, and in turn, clearing up some space on your phone - Thanks spinning wheel! Usually we don't get along, but this time...

Go check that above mentioned path of Settings > General > Storage & iCloud Usage after "renting" the movie. See some more bytes? 

Now go back to iTunes and try it again - in fact, try it four or five times and it should free up more and more space. I "rented" the movie five times before it stopped freeing up space, and got from 598MB to 3.2GB. 

Voila! Space!

Now go download that new Candy Crush app, or finally update to the latest iOS. Be free, low-storage iPhone user!

(NOTE: This hasn't been tested on all versions of the iPhone, but I've seen it work on the new generation phones all the way back to iPhone 5)