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How to Make Room for iOS 8.1 (Or Later)

If you need to free up internal storage space within your device, this can be done by temporarily removing apps or content from your device, such as movies, TV shows, and audiobooks that traditionally have large file sizes associated with them.

Once iOS 8.1 (or later) is installed, you can easily re-load this content into your device via iCloud. To determine how your device’s internal storage is currently being utilized, launch Settings, tap on the General option, and then tap on the Usage option. From the Usage screen, tap on the Manage Storage option that’s displayed under the Storage heading.

From the Storage screen, a detailed listing of each app currently stored within your device, as well as how much internal storage space that app (and its related content) is utilizing is displayed. Tap on any of these app listings for additional information. As you’re looking at an app-specific screen related to the Usage option within Settings, you will have the option to delete the app itself (if it’s not one of the preinstalled apps), or delete app-specific content.

Prior to deleting app specific content, make sure you create a backup using iCloud or iTunes Sync, or whatever cloud-based file sharing service that app is compatible with. For example, to back up Microsoft Office app-specific data, documents, and files, you’ll need to use your Microsoft OneDrive account.

To manually delete photos or videos you’ve shot and that are stored within your iOS mobile device, launch the Photos app, tap on the Albums icon, and then tap on the Album listing which contains the photo(s) or video(s) you want to delete. When the Album is open, tap on the Select option that’s displayed at the top-right corner of the screen. Then, one at a time, tap on the thumbnail which represents each photo or video clip to be deleted. A blue and white checkmark icon will appear within each selected thumbnail.

To delete the selected content, tap on the Trash icon that’s displayed near the bottom-right corner of the Photos app screen. Keep in mind, if you have iCloud photo syncing turned on, when you delete a photo from your iOS mobile device, it will automatically be deleted from your iCloud account and from the other iOS mobile devices and/or computers your device is syncing with.

If you need to delete TV shows or movies stored within your iOS mobile device in order to free up internal storage space, launch the Videos app. Near the top-center of the screen, tap on the type of content you want to see displayed (Rentals, Movies, TV Shows, etc.). When you’re looking at the thumbnails for the content stored within your device, tap on the Edit option. Then, to delete specific content, tap on the small “X” icon that appears in the upper-left corner of the thumbnail. When the Delete confirmation window appears, tap on the Delete button.

Keep in mind, if you delete a purchased TV show or movie, for example, that you have purchased from the iTunes Store, you can easily reload that content once iOS 8.1 (or later) is installed. However, when you have a movie rental being stored within your device that’s waiting to be viewed, you will not be able to reload it without re-renting that movie if you delete it, unless you use iTunes Sync to first transfer the rented movie from your device to your computer.

Prior to updating the operating system, it’s a good idea to use iCloud Backup or iTunes Sync to backup your device, it’s user settings and app-specific data. If you already have iCloud Backup set up, launch Settings, tap on the iCloud option, tap on the Backup option, and then tap on the Back Up Now option.

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Last Update: November 17, 2020