Another day, another couple of clients wondering what’s using up all the storage space on their iPhone or iPad. This is one of the more common issues we deal with, both for clients here in Los Angeles and for people we help remotely or over social media.

Whether your storage concerns stem from getting messages that your iPhone is full and you can’t take anymore pictures, or perhaps your iPad isn’t letting you download the new issue of Esquire, or maybe you just want to see how much space you’re using now to see how much storage you need on your next iOS device. Whatever the reason, iOS makes it simple to get very granular about your storage use.

If you want to learn what’s occupying the storage space on your iOS device, it couldn’t be easier. Just begin by launching the Settings app on your iPhone or iPad and follow the instructions below.

1. Tap General in the Settings app.

2. Tap Storage & iCloud Usage.

3. Tap Manage Storage.

4) At this point you’ll be able to see which items are occupying the most storage on your iOS device. For most people Music, Photos and Messages will consume the most storage space, but of course individual use will vary.

If you’re wondering why Messages takes up so much space, remember that every time you send a message with an image or a video, unless you delete it, it lives in your Message database. If you’ve migrated from iPhone to iPhone for a few years, and never trashed all your message history, chances are you have many gigabytes of images and videos embedded into your message stream.

Another thing to note is that you can learn even more about a given storage category by tapping it and accessing the submenu. In this case, tap on Music to see more about what Music data is taking up the most space.

5) By drilling down into the Music category, we can see that in my case, U2 is taking up 4.2GB of the 27.4GB total music category.

By tapping U2 we’ll discover which U2 album takes up the most space.

6) After clicking on U2, we can discover that their album U22 is taking up the most space of all their albums, weighing in at 294 MB.

So there you have it. With a minimal amount of effort you can now see what’s using up space on your iPhone. If you’re short on storage space, this knowledge can guide you on what you need to delete. Alternately, if you’re in the market for a new iOS device, you’re now better equipped to know how much storage you need on your new device.

A few years back Tech Haven wrote a guide for how to free up space on your iPhone or iPad, and while Apple’s iOS software has had an update or two since the original post was written, much of the guidance there remains valid. Take a look if you’re in need of freeing up some space on your iPhone or iPad.

Tech Haven’s Guide to Freeing Up iOS Storage Space