You'll likely see a lot of recognizable categories taking up your storage like apps, photos, etc., but there's one category, often fairly large, that might raise concerns like 'Other' in particular It is highlighted in light gray and is often a significant percentage of the total available storage space.
If you are an iPhone user, check your storage space now by selecting Settings, then General, then iPhone Storage.
For more details scroll down and click on the other category (at the end on the right) which includes caches, logs, and other resources used by the system.
Logs are records of actions taken on or by our phones, a phone can for example log its connection to a WiFi network, establish a Bluetooth connection to a device, back up some data, or open a web page, in most cases log files are simple logs that don't run Lots of space often just a few megabytes.
However, caches can be a much bigger problem in clogging other storage space.
When we stream media like movies and music on iPhone, the phone will download as much content as possible, one of the main reasons for this is to reduce the dreaded spinning wheel you see when content is cached.
All of this content (cache) has to be stored somewhere and quickly fills up your device.
This cached content extends to a wide variety of applications including your web browser (such as Safari, Chrome, or Firefox) and applications such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and TikTok.
Why do you take up so much space?
While the cached data may not need a lot of space, it's surprising how massive the streaming media content can be - not to mention the graphic-rich social media apps we love so much.
Searching the app list and their storage allocations will show you how fast storage is being consumed, for example, you can see that Facebook is consuming 2.17GB.
However, if we look at the App Store, you will find that the Facebook app only requires 255.4 MB, and somehow the app occupies an additional 1.9 GB of space, where does that extra 1.9 GB come from? They are likely caches of photos, videos, and other content that your phone had stored in its storage so you can scroll through Facebook without encountering the dreaded caching spinning wheel.
How do I clear or get rid of other?
The most effective solution is also the most drastic, to really reduce your other storage, you'll need to backup your phone, reset it, and finally restore your phone from backup.
This process will remove most of the other storage used on your iPhone, but it does take some time and effort.
How can I prevent it from increasing in the future?
Unfortunately, cached files will be recreated with the most common iPhone use, but there are some things you can do to reduce storage consumption.
If you are not keen on the reset, try to troubleshoot which apps are using cache space on your iPhone.
Social media apps are a good starting point because they often store a lot of photos and videos, and while most of them don't provide an option to delete their cached data, removing and reinstalling the app will remove all cache files.
Another potential culprit is your web browser (usually Safari on most iPhones)
From the settings menu, scroll down to Safari and select "Clear history and website data". This will remove most of the cached data associated with your web browser.
If you are using another browser, such as Chrome or Firefox, repeat the steps for that browser in Settings.
If you want to continue, consider removing old SMS and iMessages.
Standard written text messages take up minimal storage space, but photos and videos shared with family and friends can take up storage space over time.
Under Settings, scroll down to Messages, then to the Message History option. The default is to keep messages forever. Changing this to a shorter time can greatly reduce space requirements.
You should also consider offloading apps, as newer iPhones allow you to remove rarely used apps. While this won't necessarily reduce your cache usage, it can free up a lot of space.
There is no simple solution to managing iPhone storage usage, reducing photos and videos will help, but there is plenty of space dedicated to apps and their cached data.