'PhoneClean' Makes it Easy to Free Your iPhone/iPad Storage

Apple's iOS 7.1 software requires 2.5GB of free storage space for a wireless install, so now is a good time for some iPhone or iPad spring cleaning. PhoneClean for Mac and PC simplifies that task, according to CIO.com blogger James A. Martin, but it is a bit rough around the edges.

Apple’s iOS 7.1 software isn’t off to a great start. Reports are rampant that the latest Apple mobile OS drains battery life, creates a keyboard-typing lag, and causes Bluetooth pairing issues, among other problems.

And that’s if you can actually download the hefty update. If you want to do an over-the-air, wireless update, you need 2.5GB of free storage space. I had less than 1GB of free space on my iPad mini when I first tried to update, and I doubt I’m the only one in this situation.

If you’re tight on storage, you can install 7.1 via iTunes; that only requires about 800MB of free space. Or you could do some spring cleaning with iMobie’s PhoneClean for Mac and PC.

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PhoneClean is free, but you need to pay for some advanced features. (Current "limited-time" prices: $20 a year or $40 for a lifetime subscription). The app is "cleaning" software that's similar to CCleaner for Windows and CleanMyMac for Mac. You connect your iDevice, then PhoneClean scans it and makes it easy to get rid of duplicate or damaged media files, unwanted apps, texts, multimedia messages and more. Sure, you can manually clean your iPhone, but having the tools together in one place makes it much easier.

PhoneClean has options for "Quick Clean," "Deep Clean," "Restore," and "Toolbox," which lets you zero in on specific kinds of files, such as photos. Unfortunately, you can’t actually see the photos while "cleaning;" you only see the generic file names, which makes this feature nearly useless. As mentioned, you need to upgrade to unlock some features. For example, PhoneClean found "privacy threats" on my iPhone 5s, which it defined only as "privacy leaks." I needed to upgrade to remove them. You'll also probably notice some language gaffes throughout the app and the iMobie website.

Despite these drawbacks, PhoneClean is an easy way to clean up your iDevice, and I recommend the free version.

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