Sun. Jun 23rd, 2024

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Key Takeaways

  • To stop Instagram from downloading posts to your phone, launch the Instagram app on your phone, access your profile page, tap the three horizontal lines in the top-right corner, choose “Settings and Privacy,” select “Archiving and Downloading,” and turn off “Save Original Photos.”
  • To manually download Instagram posts to your phone, you can save individual videos by selecting the video, tapping the three dots, and choosing “Download.” To save all your posts (including photos and videos), request a data download from Instagram.

When you capture a photo or record a video in Instagram, the app automatically saves a copy of that item on your phone’s storage. If you don’t want these photos and videos cluttering your phone’s camera roll and using storage space, you can disable that feature. We’ll show you how to do that.

Prevent Instagram From Saving Posts to Your Camera Roll

Instagram’s app for Android and iPhone offers an option that lets you save a copy of your captured content in your phone’s gallery. If you don’t need these copies, simply disable an option in your app. You can turn the feature back on any time you want.

To begin, launch the Instagram app on your phone. In the app’s bottom bar, tap your profile icon. On your profile page, in the top-right corner, tap the hamburger menu (three horizontal lines) and choose “Settings and Privacy.”


Scroll down the open page and select “Archiving and Downloading.”


On the open screen, turn off the “Save Original Photos” option. If you’d like the app not to save your Stories, disable the “Save Story to Gallery” option as well.


You won’t see any prompts, but know that the app has saved your changes.

From now on, Instagram on your phone won’t preserve a copy of the photos or videos you take using the app’s built-in camera. If you’re looking to further free up your iPhone or Android phone’s storage, empty the Trash, reduce WhatsApp’s storage usage, analyze your other apps’ storage usage, and find and delete duplicate files on your phone.

How to Manually Download Instagram Posts to Your Phone

In the future, if you’d like to download your Instagram posts to your phone, you have a couple of options to do that. One option is to download and save your videos (Reels) to your phone. With this method, you select the individual video you want to download, tap an option, and Instagram saves that video to your phone’s local storage. Note that currently, it’s not possible to save individual photos to your phone; you can only download videos.

Download Your Videos

To use that option, launch Instagram, access your profile page, and select the video to download. On the video screen, in the right sidebar, tap the three dots.

Select the three dots in the right sidebar.

In the open menu, select “Download.”


Instagram will save the selected video to your phone. And that’s it.

Download All of Your Content

If you’re looking to save all your Instagram posts to your device (including photos and videos), you can request Instagram for a copy of the information they have on you. You can send in this content download request, and Instagram will let you download all your posted content.

To request that data through your phone, launch Instagram, open your profile page, tap the hamburger menu, and choose “Your Activity.”


On the following page, at the bottom, select “Download Your Information.”


Choose “Request a Download.”


Follow the on-screen instructions to finish sending Instagram a request to download your data. Instagram will process your request and let you know when your content archive is ready to download.

Note that you’ll have four days to download your requested information, after which the download link will expire. You’ll then have to re-request Instagram to send you a copy of your data. Also, your download won’t contain other users’ content, like the photos in which they’ve tagged you.

And that’s how you prevent this social media app from saving copies of your content on your phone. Enjoy!

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By John P.

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