Spring Cleaning 2016: Smartphone Edition

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Most Americans go through the post-winter ritual of spring cleaning – but what about cleaning the contents of our smartphones? We’ve become increasingly attached to these devices, so it’s only fair they receive some freshening up come spring. Here are some tips to help you out with the process!

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  1. Delete notes when you are done with them. This can include to-do lists, grocery store items, or even a collection of links that you no longer need. 
  2. Keep a set of files externally. Should you lose your phone, you’ll still have a backup of everything you had on it. An SD card will do the trick! This is also great for freeing up storage.
  3. Clear out photos. Have a bunch of duplicates or accidental takes? Delete them. As for the rest, go ahead and transfer them to an alternate storage like Photo Stream or Dropbox. (Pro tip for iPhone users: if you are in HDR mode, go to Settings > Photos & Camera and toggle off «Keep Normal Photo». This will ensure that you keep only the HDR version and not end up with duplicates.)
  4. Delete old text messages. Have you spoken to this person within a year? If not, delete the conversation – it’s very unlikely that the thread’s contents are still relevant.
  5. Check your storage status. See which apps are taking up the most space and delete then redownload them. Since they have been accumulating information for a while, this process will give them a fresh start and take up less space. See how to do this for both iPhone and Android.
  6. Delete apps you don’t use. Most of the apps on our smartphones go idle for far too long, so make sure you only keep on hand the essentials. For example, my personal essentials include Spotify, Googlemaps, and RapidSOS Haven. How can I get through my day without music, directions, and safety in my pocket? Prioritize your apps and delete away!