Here’s how you can instantly expand iPhone storage (without buying iPhone with larger capacity)

Before hitting that check out / buy button to buy bigger capacity iPhone, you may want to consider these following options to expand your iPhone storage

Who say iPhone doesn’t have external storage? Just because iPhone doesn’t have the expansion slot for memory card that doesn’t mean iPhone doesn’t have a way to add more storage. Unlike many Android smartphones which come with memory card slot for adding additional storage, iPhone since its inception never has the memory card slot. But thanks to the advancement of technology, now iPhone – even without the expansion slot for memory card – has few ways to add more storage to the iPhone. So you don’t need to spend so much money to buy the largest capacity iPhone available. Using the following simple methods – which I’m sharing with you below – you can easily and instantly expand your iPhone storage for a fraction of the cost of buying the largest capacity iPhone. Well, here they are.


Here are methods you can use to expand iPhone Storage instantly.

There are a few ways you can add more storage to iPhone. I have categorized them into 3 different methods, from easiest to moderate steps.


Method 1: Using Subscription-based cloud storage

This is the easiest method among the 3 methods, but the most expensive since it’s incurring monthly subscription fee. You just need to sign up for any cloud storage provider services, then you should be good.

Internet connection required:Requires active Internet connection
3rd party app installation required:Require 3rd party app to be installed to backup photos, videos and documents.

Choices under Method 1 – Using Subscription-based cloud storage:

The choices presented here are not exhaustive list, but rather the services I have tried before.


Google Photos

Cloud storage solution from Google for backing up photos and videos. All you need to do to is to register for a Google account, then install Google Photos app, then start backing up photos and videos. Good thing about Google Photos is that, it can be setup to backup your photos and videos automatically whenever the app is running (foreground or background) then Google Photos can also be configured to delete the photos and videos that have been backup from your iPhone storage – to free up your iPhone storage automatically. Google Photos gives 15 GB free storage. Details on Google Photos pricing, you can check it here: Google One storage pricing at JILAXZONE.

Link to registerGoogle Photos
Link to get Google Photos appGoogle Photos on App Store
Google Pixel 3 unlimited storage on Google Photos jilaxzone.com
By using Cloud Storage services such as Google Photos, you can expand your iPhone storage to Unlimited Storage over the cloud!

Google Drive

If Google Photos is for backing up your photos and videos, Google Drive is for backing up and extending your documents and files storage. Same like Google Photos, Google also gives 15 GB free shared storage to Google Drive (shared with Google Photos). Details on Google Photos pricing, you can check it here: Google One storage pricing at JILAXZONE.

Link to registerGoogle Photos
Link to get Google Photos appGoogle Drive on App Store

Microsoft OneDrive

Previously known as SkyDrive, Microsoft also offer cloud storage solution that works perfectly with iPhone, called OneDrive. You need to have a Microsoft account to start. Download the Microsoft OneDrive to your iPhone and start backing up your photos and videos. Microsoft OneDrive gives 5 GB free storage.

Link to registerMicrosoft OneDrive
Link to get Google Photos appMicrosoft OneDrive on App Store

Dropbox

Similar to Google, Dropbox is offering cloud storage service that can store not only photos and videos but also all of your documents. Dropbox gives 2GB free storage. For pricing details, check it here: Dropbox storage pricing at Dropbox.

Link to registerDropbox
Link to get Google Photos appDropbox on App Store

What about iCloud Photos?

iCloud Photos, Apple native cloud storage, is unfortunately not an option here, because although iCloud Photos does backup your photos and videos to the cloud, but it always remain in sync with your iPhone. Means if you delete your photos or videos from your iPhone with the intention to free up storage, the same photos or videos will get deleted from iCloud.


Pros and Cons of using Method 1 – Using Subscription-based cloud storage:

ProsCons
+ Depends on the service you are taking, you can extend iPhone storage by storing / backing up your photos, videos and documents into the cloud storage.

+ Very easy to expand your iPhone storage. Everything is just tapping on your iPhone.
– You need to pay for a monthly / yearly subscription fee.

– Requires active Internet connection.

Method 2: Using Flash Drive offline storage

Another easy method to expand your iPhone storage instantly. This method requires you to do one time purchase of the flash drive. You can pick and choose the capacity that’s right for you. Flash drive capacity is ranging from 32GB to 2TB. Good thing of using this method is that, it works offline.

Internet connection required:Does not require Internet connection
3rd party app installation required:Require 3rd party app to be installed to backup photos, videos and documents.
iPhone OTG MMC External Memory Card jilaxzone.com Add external memory to iPhone
Easily expand iPhone storage with flash drives

Choices under Method 2 – Using Flash Drive offline storage:

The choices presented here are not exhaustive list, I’m sharing the commonly used flash drives by many.


Sandisk 256GB iXpand Flash Drive Go

Flash storage solution for iPhone that comes from Sandisk – world leading brand in flash storage. Flash storage choices are ranging from 32GB to 256GB.

Link to getSandisk iXpand Flash Drive Go at Amazon

HUMBEM 1TB USB Flash Drive for iPhone

Another flash storage solution for iPhone, but this time is made by HUMBEM. It adds 1TB extra storage to your iPhone and it’s price very competitively, 1TB flash drive for about less than $40.

Link to getHUMBEM 1TB USB Flash Drive at Amazon

Note: If you buy anything from Amazon using links above, I will earn a small commission at no extra cost charged on your purchases.


Pros and Cons of using Method 2 – Using Flash Drive offline storage:

ProsCons
+ You can extend iPhone storage by storing / backing up your photos, videos and documents into the cloud storage.

+ Works offline, without Internet connection
– You need to always bring the device with you.

– You need to install the 3rd party app to back up photos and videos.

Method 3: DIY Cloud Storage

Unlike the previous 2 methods, method 3 – DIY Cloud Storage is totally free – no subscription cost needed and no one time purchase required, assuming you have working computer with you and an active Internet connection.

Internet connection required:Requires active Internet connection
3rd party app installation required:Does not require 3rd party app to be installed to backup photos, videos and documents.

What you need to do is to setup your computer, enabling your computer as your personal cloud storage, then using Files app (iPhone native app), you can extend your iPhone storage to store your photos, videos as well as documents and files. This requires 25-30 minutes of your time to do one time setup – both on your iPhone and your computer. Once the one time setup is done, you can always use this DIY Cloud Storage to expand and backup your iPhone storage. How big the capacity depends on how big your computer hard drive is (you can always add more storage to your computer anyway).

I have shared the complete step by step on this article here: DIY Cloud Services: Build your own Cloud Storage Service using SMB Over The Internet at JILAXZONE.

diy cloud service enable computer on the cloud jilaxzone.com
Create your own Cloud Services by enabling your Computer into the Internet

Pros and Cons of using Method 3 – DIY Cloud Storage:

ProsCons
+ You can extend iPhone storage by storing / backing up your photos, videos and documents into the cloud storage.

+ No subscription cost, no one time purchase required.

+ Personal cloud – better privacy.
– Requires active Internet connection.

– Requires your computer to be always ON.


Bring it all together

So, there are 3 methods you can expand your iPhone storage without buying for a larger capacity iPhone. The choice is yours now. At the time this article is written, Apple has just announce iPhone 13. One of the iPhone 13 family – the iPhone 13 Pro – has the base price of $999 which comes with 128GB storage. The 1TB variant cost $1499 (or $500 more expensive than the base model).

Using the 3 methods shared above and with extra $500 you get from not buying the highest capacity iPhone, it can last you at least 5 years (if you are using Google Photos and Google Drive with 2TB plan – which is bigger than the highest capacity iPhone) using method 1 or if you are using method 2, you can buy at least 10 flash drives, each has 1TB storage for a total of 10TB. If you are using method 3, you can use $500 to pay for monthly Internet connection as well as buy you another hard drive to add more storage to your personal cloud storage.

So which one are you planning to get? I am personally using both method 2 – using Flash Drive offline storage as well as method 3 – DIY Cloud Services and so far I have never encounter any “not enough storage” issue on my 128GB iPhone.


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