What does Documents and Data mean on iPhone?

Have you ever looked at the breakdown of the storage on your iPhone, though? You can find this under Settings > General > iPhone Storage. This will let you know the main space-hogging offenders on your device.

Scrolling down will then show a list of your apps, and how much space they take up. Tap one of these, and it will be broken down further into App Size (the size of the actual application that you install), and “Documents & Data“… what’s this?

What is Documents & Data

What is Documents and Data on iPhone? Documents and Data is made up of cached files and cookies (such as log-in data and preferences) and downloaded files like images and videos. These files are created and stored in order for the app to perform more quickly and efficiently for you on repeat visits to the app. However, it can soon eat up lots of space on your iPhone. You may find yourself wanting to clear out this data to make space on your iPhone – especially if it’s an app you rarely use!

Why can users not manually delete Documents & Data from iOS apps?

That’s a good question, hopefully a future version of iOS will offer a manual option to delete app caches and app data. Many Android apps have such a feature, and a manual cache removal option would be very welcome in the iOS world where Documents & Data and the “Other” storage routinely balloons out and is nearly impossible to reclaim without a significant amount of effort and often a device restore.

How to delete Documents and Data from iCloud on iPhone

iOS lets you check out how much storage each app’s data has consumed on your device. Once you have given a quick look at the space hijacked by apps, you have multiple options to get rid of their associated data.

You can offload unused apps without having to delete their data. And when you reinstall them, their data is automatically restored. Hence, you can use this handy feature to free up plenty of space on your device without having to clean up the important data. What if you wish to go for complete cleanup? In this case, you can delete the app along with its entire documents and data.

Step #1. Open Settings app on your iOS device → Tap on General.Tap on Settings then General on iPhone or iPad

Step #2. Tap on iPhone/iPad Storage → Now, tap on the app in question.

Tap on iPhone Storage and Tap on the App you Want to Remove Documents and Data on iPhone

Step #3. Next, you have two options: Offload App and Delete App.

If you wish to delete the app but want to keep its data, choose Offload option.As mentioned above, you will be able to reinstate the associated file when reinstalling the app.

Offload App on iPhone or iPad

But if you decide to clear out the entire data, hit the Delete button and confirm.

Delete App to Clear Documents and Data on iPhone or iPad

Clear Documents and Data of Specific Apps from iCloud on iPhone and iPad

How about removing saved data from specific apps from iCloud? You can prevent your precious iCloud storage from being cluttered for space by getting rid of redundant files. Keep in mind; it will wipe out all the data from the cloud and connected devices. And, it can’t be undone.

Step #1. Open Settings app → Tap on your profile.

Tap on Settings then Your Profile on iPhone or iPad

Step #2. Tap on iCloud → Now, tap on Manage Storage.

Tap on iCloud then Manage Storage in iPhone or iPad Settings

Step #3. Next, tap on the app which data you want to remove from the cloud and then hit Delete Data → Tap on Delete to confirm.

Delete Documents and Data on iPhone for App

That’s how you can eradicate cache of individual apps from all of your devices synced with the same iCloud account.

Tip: Allow only selected apps to store their data in iCloud. It will help you manage your storage in a better way.

As you can see, I have a lot of Documents & Data in my Podcasts app on my iPhone. In this case, the majority of this data is comprised of podcasts which I’ve downloaded to my phone through this app.

After deleting the app, my downloaded podcasts were also removed from the device, as well as any settings I may have chosen on set-up.

Next, go to the App Store on your iPhone, and search for the app you just deleted. Select the app and tap to “Get” it on your iPhone. You can now begin using the app as before, except you’ll notice you have cleared up space on your device during the process.