When you connect your iPhone to iTunes, you may have come across something listed as ‘Other’ taking up a good amount of storage space on your device. This article should help you understand what this mysterious ‘other’ is and How to Clear ‘Other’ on your iPhone and iPad.
What is ‘Other’ Data On iPhone or iPad
iTunes categorizes the data on you iPhone or iPad using its 8 standard data categories – Apps, Music, Movies, TV Shows, Podcasts, Books, Photos and Info. You can click on each of these standard data categories and see what is using the space on your device.
For example, you can click on Apps to see all the apps on your device and see how much space each one of them is using. In case required, you can remove apps that are taking up a lot of storage space on your device.
Coming back to ‘Other’, anything else on your iPhone that does not fit into the 8 standard iTunes data categories is conveniently labelled as ‘Other’ by iTunes.
In general, iTunes does not know or care about this ‘Other’ data and hence does not provide a breakdown of this data to you. Also, iTunes cannot help you in any way in case you want to delete or remove the ‘Other’ data from your device.
By now you must be getting really curious about What ‘Other’ data really consists off.
Going by what is not included in the 8 iTunes data categories, the stuff labelled as ‘other’ includes remaining data like Safari browser cache, Safari Bookmarks, Safari Reading Lists, Mail attachments, Data downloaded by apps, Siri’s cache, notes, reminders, weather data, voice memos and also Corrupted files.
View ‘Other’ On Your iPhone or iPad
As you will agree, a picture is worth a thousand words. Hence, let us first take a look at ‘Other’ on an iPhone so that you understand it better.
1. Connect your iPhone or iPad to a Windows Computer or Mac using its supplied connector cable.
2. Open iTunes on your computer.
3. You may have to wait for your iPhone to show up on iTunes. Once it does, click on the phone icon.
4. iTunes will scan the storage of your device and display it at the bottom of your screen. Take your mouse to the yellow part of the bar to see how much space is taken up by data classified as ‘Other’ by iTunes.
Delete ‘Other’ From iPhone and iPad
Now that you understand ‘Other’ and see the storage space taken up by ‘Other’ data. Let us now focus on getting rid of this ‘other’ data to free up storage space on your device.
A quick way of getting rid of ‘Other’ data on your iPhone or iPad is to Reset your device and Restore it back using an iTunes backup. This method is recommended in case your device has corrupted data and corrupt files that cannot be deleted by other methods.
However, in most cases you should be able to significantly reduce the storage space taken up by ‘Other’ data by deleting the following major contributors to the ‘Other’ data on your device.
1. Saved Messages and Message Attachments: Over a period of time saved messages and message attachments can start taking up a ton of storage space on your iPhone.
You can delete saved text messages and message attachments by following the steps listed in this article: How to Delete Saved Messages on iPhone
2. Documents and Data: Right from the time they are installed on your iPhone, apps start storing information like app caches, login information, app related information and attachments on your device.
Over a period of time all this app related stuff (classified as “Documents and Data” on your iPhone) starts building up in size and often ends up becoming way larger than the size of the app.
You can delete “Documents and data” on your iPhone or iPad by following the steps listed in this article: How to Delete Documents and Data on iPhone.
3. Safari History and Website Data: You can delete your browsing history on Safari by tapping on Settings > Safari > Clear History and Website Data.
After removing these three items, take a look at the space occupied by ‘Other’ on your iPhone. In case the ‘Other’ still accounts for a significant amount, it is likely that you are dealing with corrupted files and data on your device.
As mentioned above, the best approach in this case is to Reset your iPhone and then Restore it back from an iTunes backup.
Clear ‘Other’ Data by Resetting and Restoring iPhone
1. First make a backup of your iPhone to your local Computer using iTunes. You will find the steps to backup your iPhone in this article: How to Backup iPhone to Computer and iCloud
2. After making a Backup, tap on Settings > General
3. Next, tap on Reset
4. On the next screen, tap on Erase All Content and Settings.
This will erase all the content on your device, including the corrupt files and other stuff that makes the ‘Other’ data on your iPhone.
5. The next step is to connect your iPhone to a computer and Restore it from an iTunes Backup that you had saved to your local computer in Step 1 above.
For the exact steps to Restore iPhone from an iTunes Backup, you can refer to this article: How to Restore iPhone from iTunes and iCloud Backup.