Are podcasts hogging all the free space on your iPhone?

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mobtkr18 May 2022Last Update : 1 month ago
Are podcasts hogging all the free space on your iPhone?
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Wondering where all the free space on your iPhone (or iPad) went? If you use Apple’s Podcasts app and have active subscriptions, your device may have downloaded and stored episodes. Here’s how to check and how to make sure it doesn’t happen again in the future.

Delete your old podcasts

If you visit Settings > General > Storage on your iPhone or iPad, you’ll see a breakdown of how your device is using available space. This includes categories such as apps, photos, and media. The system does not distinguish between podcasts and offline music, it uses the same “Media” tag for both.

Scan iPhone Storage

You can scroll down on this page to see which apps are using your free space, including the Podcasts app. Tap on it and at the bottom of the page you will see which shows have been downloaded and how much space they are consuming.

You can delete them by tapping the “Edit” button, then tapping the red circle followed by “Delete” next to a show. This will delete everything at once, including any episodes you haven’t listened to or finished yet.

Delete Podcasts app data in iOS settings

You can also do it manually, episode by episode, in the Podcasts app. Launch the application then use the “Library” tab to select a show. You will see a small round “down arrow” icon next to all currently downloaded episodes. Use the ellipsis “…” icon next to each episode to access the “Delete Download” option to delete it.

How to Stop Podcasts from Wasting Storage Space

The best way to prevent podcasts from eating up your free space is to set download limits. Apple added better controls for this with iOS 15.5, so make sure your iPhone or iPad is updated to the latest version under Settings > General > Software Update before proceeding.

Open the Podcasts app and use the Library tab to select a podcast you’re currently subscribed to. Tap the ellipsis “…” button in the upper right corner of the screen and select “Settings” from the menu that appears.

Tap the “Automatically download” option and choose how many podcast episodes you want to keep on your device at once.

Automatically download podcast episodes setting

Older episodes will automatically be deleted when they exceed the threshold you set, but podcasts you manually uploaded won’t be affected.

You can also enable the “Delete Played Downloads” setting, which automatically deletes older podcasts you’ve already listened to. Be aware that if you stop the podcast before it’s finished (by a few minutes, even), it won’t be deleted and you’ll have to do it manually. It can be annoying if there are commercials that you regularly skip at the end of an episode.

Other ways to reclaim space

If you’re using anything other than Apple’s built-in Podcasts app, you’ll need to configure your app to reflect these settings if you haven’t already.

Not listening to podcasts on your iPhone or iPad, but still looking for ways to free up space? Check out our guide to creating free space on your iPhone or iPad.

RELATED: How to Free Up Space on an iPhone or iPad

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