How to clear cache on Android? What are these temporary app files? Why do you need to clear cache?
If you have all of these questions on your mind then you have come to the right place. In this article, we will explain everything about clearing cache on your android devices.
With you frequently trying to download new applications on your smartphone, there are chances of your Android device’s limited storage filling up quickly.
Apart from you trying to download new apps, another reason would be the apps that are already installed on your phone will regularly create new files to store information.
All of these temporary data files are called cache. An ample amount of your device’s storage space might get filled up with these cache files.
In this article, we will walk you through what temporary app files ate and how you can clear the cache on your android. Without further ado, let’s get started!!
What Is Cached Data?
Cache data is nothing but the data related to any app or information that is stored for easy retrieval. This means your phone uses the temporary data stored in cache files for quicker recall of associated information when you open an application.
For instance, let’s say Spotify may cache your most frequently used playlists in order to not load the playlist each time you open it.
Similarly, chrome may cache a large image on a website that you visit frequently, so it does not have to download the image every time you open the same web page.
A cache file will only be useful to the associated program. This means Spotify’s cache is of no use to Instagram.
Oftentimes, if an app decides the stored temporary information or data is no longer useful, it discards the cache files associated with it.
Websites, apps, games etc all use cache files to offer you quick results or a browsing experience.
A cache is not only used by your Android device but it is a function of desktop browsers and other software as well.
Without cache files, your device will have to reload images, information and other elements every time you access them, which is time-consuming.
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How to Clear Cache on Android Devices?
On recent Android versions, you are required to delete the cache files for each app individually. Remember that you seldom need to delete all the cache across your android device.
Mostly, clearing the cache from a few troublesome apps will resolve storage or performance issues.
Follow the below-given steps to clear cached data for an Android application.
- For this, you need to first open Settings and select Storage.
- In the resulting list, tap on Apps. This will redirect you to a list of all the apps installed on your phone.
- Choose the preferred app whose cache you wish to clear. To see which apps are taking up the most space, tap on the three-dot menu at the top-right corner and select Sort by size. We’ll use Google as an example.
- Finally, on the app’s info page, tap on Storage. This will further direct you to a page that says Manage Space and Clear Cache option.
- Tap on Clear cache and you are good to go.
That’s it !! this is all you need to do to clear the cache files of any application on your Android phone.
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Note: If you tap Clear Storage instead of Clear cache, you will end up removing all data from that app. This resets it to a fresh state as if you have installed it from the Play Store.
In older Android versions, there was an option to delete the cache data all at once. Settings > Storage > Cached Data. Finally, tap OK and you are done.
However, this feature is not available in most of the recent Android versions.
What Happens After Clearing Cache?
Once you clear the cache files, you will regain some storage space and the app will also continue to work normally. Having said that, because you erased the data to smooth out the performance of the application, some elements of that app may load more slowly the next time you use the app.
Although it may take some extra time to load around at first after clearing cache, the app may build up cache again gradually based on your usage.
Clearing cache will not log you out or cause any major changes. You will also not lose data like browser bookmarks, game progress etc.
Benefits of Clearing Cache
Cache files are important, and you are not required to mess with them. However, it is useful to manually remove cache files from your Android phone every so often.
Below is a small list of how clearing the cache on Android can be helpful:
- In simple words, clearing cache will help you save storage space on your device. However, this is only a temporary solution as new cache files are created gradually as you use the applications.
- Many a time, old cache files may get corrupted. When this happens, apps may experience performance issues. Deleting faulty cache files is the only solution to this issue.
- In layman’s terms, old cache files can pose security as well as privacy threats. Web pages cached in your device’s browser may contain some sensitive information such as your login details etc. If an unauthorized person gets access to these files, they may use the cache memory to obtain your private details.
- If a browser or any other application refuses to fetch the latest version of a page, then clearing cache will be able to force it to update.
Should You Clear Cache Regularly?
Now that you are aware of the benefits of clearing cache, you may think to manually clear the cache on a schedule but this can be inefficient. Remember that cached files are useful when it comes to speeding up access to content you use on daily basis.
That is the reason why it is not recommended to frequently delete old cache files manually. Android already has a built-in mechanism when it comes to erasing unused files that work pretty well. The only times you need to delete the cache manually is as follows:
- when an application’s cache files are corrupted causing the app to misbehave or does not properly then you may want to clear the cache manually.
- Clear cache manually when you wish to delete files that contain personal information to protect your privacy.
- When you run out of storage space on your device but do not want to uninstall any app or delete media from your gallery then you may choose to clear the cache manually. Remember this is only a temporary solution. However, other ways will help you free up your android storage.
Do I need to use Android Cleaner Apps?
There are a plethora of apps on the play store that claim to delete unused data and cache files on your smartphone quickly. While these Android cleaning apps can sometimes provide a useful service, these are a few reasons why these cleaning apps are not worth using:
- Most of these apps often make false claims such as clearing cache files while dramatically boosting your phone.
- While they claim to clear all unused and cache data and help you regain some storage space, many a time these apps consume more space on your device.
- Not just that these even are the reason why your device performance gradually slows down as these cleaning apps run in the background constantly.
- Often these apps are filled with ads and to use an ad-free version you need to upgrade by purchasing the paid version.
You can still opt for Android cleaning apps if you wish to. If possible, avoid them altogether. Most Android devices already have a feature like smart storage that helps removes old files, third-party apps and other unnecessary data from the device.
Deleting Cache on Android Quickly and Easily
Clearing unused cache files on Android is one of the easiest ways to free up space temporarily or troubleshoot app issues. But it is not something you should or required to do often, or it is not a great idea to rely on third-party apps as well. Use it moderately only as a specific tool when necessary for device performance.
Meanwhile, if you are using an old Android phone with very little space, there are other methods you can opt for, to maximize your device’s storage.
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We hope this article has been helpful to you. In this article, we have explained all the possible ways you can clear cache on android devices.
We have explained everything about how to clear cache on android without having to lose any data. If you have any further queries related to this article, let us know in the comments.
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