What the Tech: New year, ‘new’ smartphone

Here are five things you can do right now to make your phone seem new in the new year.
Here are five things you can do right now to make your phone seem new in the new year.
Published: Jan. 10, 2023 at 4:15 PM EST
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LANSING, Mich. (WILX) - For many, New Year’s resolutions are usually things that affect your health, finances, or family. But resolutions can also be set to improve the health of your tech devices.

You probably use your smartphone more than anything else you own and as consumer technology reporter Jamey Tucker explains, tech resolutions can improve the life of your phone.

A lot of people see a new year as a chance to make a fresh start, not just for our bodies but for our devices.

Here are five things you can do right now to make your phone seem new in the new year.

#1 Clean up your storage space and attachments, photos, and video

First, open storage on an iPhone or android device. Review large attachments taking up space.

These are videos and photos in text messages you’ve received in 2022 and farther back. One iPhone we looked at has over a gig and a half of attachments I can probably delete. Android recommends what you should delete to free up space.

#2 Let go of old messages

Look through the old text messages and delete any that are not important. This is especially helpful with messages that contain large attachments.

#3 Review which apps use a lot of storage.

Social Media apps can take up a lot of space. Facebook, TikTok, and Instagram can be using space for no reason. The easiest way to free up that space is to delete the apps. I deleted TikTok and the 613 megabytes of data it doesn’t need.

Once you delete the app, reinstall it and sign back in. You won’t lose anything, and it’ll run faster.

#4 Remove apps that you don’t really use

Delete apps you don’t use. Particularly the free ones that constantly track your activity and drain the battery. That game you downloaded on a whim and haven’t played in months? Get rid of it.

#5 Clear the cache

Think of caches like a junk drawer where lots of stuff from searches and browsing winds up. Stuff you don’t necessarily need. In Chrome, you’ll find clear browsing data under privacy and security.

In Safari on an iPhone, go to settings > Safari and look for Clean History and website data. You’ll have to sign back in accounts you’re logged into. You should do this every couple of months, but only some people follow that guideline.

What is cache? Think of it as your phone’s junk drawer. A lot of things wind up here that you don’t need. And if your phone is a little sluggish, clearing the cache will help speed things up.

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