Sat. May 18th, 2024

Are you always running out of storage space on your Android phone? Google is now rolling out a feature that automatically archives your least-used apps, reducing their storage impact by 60%. At first glance, this setting may seem like a recipe for disaster, but it’s actually quite intuitive. Archived apps aren’t completely deleted from your phone, and they still appear in your app drawer. When you try to open an archived app, it reinstalls almost immediately and retains all of your original user data.

The “automatically archive apps” setting first debuted in April of 2023, but it was only accessible when attempting to install an app with insufficient storage. Starting today, you can enable the setting at any time. Just open the Google Play store, tap the menu icon on the left side of the search bar, select “Settings,” and expand the “General” settings. You should see the “automatically archive apps” toggle toward the bottom of your screen—if not, this feature may not be available on your device just yet.

Google’s rollout of the “automatically archive apps” setting was first noticed by a member of Mishaal Rahman’s Discord server. It was then shared to Twitter by Rahman, who previously explained how app archival works on Android — it relies on the new Android App Bundle system, which reduces app size by providing device-specific APKs to users (rather than forcing users to download several APKs). Apps that are not published as Android App Bundles cannot be archived, though this shouldn’t be a problem, as all apps are now required to follow the App Bundle system.

This is just one of many ways to save storage space on your Android device. You can also delete multiple apps at once, automatically save pictures and videos to Google Photos (or other cloud storage apps), clear your Spotify cache, or use Google Files to hunt down old downloads and duplicate items. If you’re struggling to take these steps, check out our guide on freeing up Android storage.

Again, Google is currently rolling out the “automatically archive apps” toggle. It may take some time for this feature to reach all Android devices. If your phone storage is full, you can force Google Play to present this setting by attempting to install an app.

Source: Mishaal Rahman

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By John P.

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