I’m going to talk to you about iCloud storage backup options and what happens when that dreaded message comes up saying that you’ve run out of iCloud storage space (“Not Enough Storage”).
This message means that you’re running out of iCloud storage and I’m going to show you a few ways to deal with this message.
One way is to buy more storage but if that’s not an option, there are also other ways of dealing with a full iCloud storage.
First Step: How to Find iCloud Options
One thing that’s not exactly obvious is where you can actually find the options to clear up your iCloud storage.
Here’s what you need to do:
- Head over to the settings app
- Click your name at the top of settings
- Scroll down and click on iCloud
There’s not an immediate indication of where your iCloud storage is, so to find the storage settings, click on ‘Manage Storage’.
When you’re here, you’ll see the total storage at the top.
You’ll also see your iCloud storage limit and how much empty storage you’ve got until it’s completely full up.
If you received the ‘Not Enough Storage’ message, you’re not going to have much free storage left because your iCloud Storage is filled to the brink.
On the bottom of the screen, you can see ‘Back Up Now’.
If you were to hit Back Up Now, then your device will attempt to backup your data.
However, since your iCloud storage is full, you’re going to get the message ‘Not Enough Storage’.
If you don’t want your device to backup at all, you can toggle the switch that says ‘iCloud Backup’.
If you want to backup your device with iTunes, this would be a good reason to switch off the iCloud backup.
Option 1: Pay for More iCloud Storage
If you click ‘Change Storage Plan’, you’ll be presented with a bunch of options giving you the option to buy more iCloud storage in addition to the free 5GB of storage Apple has already given you.
You have the option to pay for 50GB, 200GB, or 2TB.
You’ll see the price of each storage beside the upgrade capacity and you’ll have to make these payments each month.
You can see the pricing of each upgrade depending on your region.
You even have the option to downgrade to a smaller package if you’ve already purchased an upgrade.
If you go back to ‘Manage Storage’, this is where you can tell your device which apps to backup and which apps not to backup anymore
Option 2: Remove Documents & Data From iCloud Stored by Apps
In manage storage, you can see what apps are currently using iCloud.
If you click on an app, it will show you all the data and documents that are actually being backed up by that app.
For example, if you clicked the documents app, you will see the exact files and how much storage it’s taking up in iCloud.
If you see a file that’s taking up a huge amount of data from your iCloud storage and you don’t want to back that file up, you can:
- Touch & swipe that file to the left
- Click Delete
This would free up more storage in your iCloud. You’ll also notice that there is either ‘Delete Documents & Data’, ‘Disable & Delete’, Turn Off and Delete, or ‘Delete Data’.
These buttons will allow you to clear the apps data from your iCloud storage.
If you see an app that doesn’t have the delete documents button, you can’t delete specific documents for this app.
Option 3: Remove Backup From Devices you Don’t Longer Use
If you’ve used all the options above and you haven’t managed to clear data from your iCloud storage, you can remove some devices in iCloud or stop them from backing up.
Here’s how you do it:
- Go back to settings
- Click your name at the very top
- In Apple ID, you’ll see all the devices that use iCloud
- Click an old device that’s being backed up
- Click ‘iCloud Backup’
- Toggle off ‘iCloud Backup’
In Apple ID, you can also delete the devices from your iCloud by clicking the device, then click ‘Remove from Account’ at the bottom.
If you deleted the backup of an old device, this would free up a lot of space from your iCloud storage.
If you click on the device that you’re currently using, it tells you when your latest backup was successfully made.
If you look slightly below, you’ll see that it tells you the ‘Next Backup Size’.
This is the amount of storage that would be taken up in iCloud if you back up your device now.
This is also the amount of data that has accumulated on your phone since your last backup.
If the free space in your iCloud is more than the ‘Next Backup Size’, iCloud won’t be able to back up your device.
You can’t make the next backup if your next backup takes you over your iCloud storage limit.
If this is the case, you’ll see a yellow warning sign next to your ‘Next Backup Size’.
You can look at the apps beneath and you can see how much data from each app would be going to your new back up.
You can delete data from certain apps such as your camera roll and the size of your next backup is going to be reduced.
Option 4: Content From iCloud Backup (E.g. Camera Roll)
If you switch off the toggle for certain apps, you’ll receive a message saying “Do you want to turn off Photos backup data from iCloud?”
- Click Turn Off & Delete
This takes the backup size of your next backup down which will enable you to backup your device now if you managed to get rid of some more data.
So that’s one way of doing it – switch off apps that you don’t necessarily want to backup.
If you’re regularly taking files from apps such as photos and you’re uploading them to other apps such as Flickr, Instagram, or even your computer, you can quite safely switch that app off.
This would reduce your iCloud storage so you won’t be getting messages saying that your iPhone is too full.
Option 5: Remove Data Directly from Apps (Such as Photos & Videos)
So you have used all of these options and your iCloud is still full, the next option is to delete data directly from the app.
Instead of switching apps off in iCloud, you can clear a lot of data from the app directly.
For example, you can go to the photos application and delete photos and videos especially, from your camera roll.
After deleting data directly from apps:
- Go to settings
- Click your name and go to Apple ID
- Go to ‘Manage Storage’
You’ll see how much space you have freed up from deleting these files. If you deleted files from your camera roll, you’ll see that the yellow bar in iCloud Storage would have gone down considerably.
You can now backup your data without getting that annoying message saying that there isn’t enough storage left in iCloud.
Comment down below which method you used to clear up the most iCloud storage for your next backup.