Over the years, the instant messaging platform has become the go-to platform to send not only messages, but also contacts, locations, documents and the second most common — photos and videos. Needless to say, over the years, these photos and videos occupy a huge chunk of your smartphone’s storage, especially if you are not in the habit of cleaning the junk out of your media library.

How to stop WhatsApp from consuming your smartphone storage 1

WhatsApp, by default, automatically downloads any video or photo that you receive on your chats, but if you disable it, you get a chance to control what gets downloaded and thereby keep a check on the smartphone storage front. If you’re wondering how you can stop saving WhatsApp media to your phone’s gallery, follow these steps:

For Android

  • Open WhatsApp
  • Tap on the three dot option on the top right corner
  • Go to settings
  • Tap on chats
  • Look for media visibility
  • Toggle it off

If you do not want to keep this setting for all chats on WhatsApp, but only for a selective chat, then follow these steps:

  • Open the chat
  • Tap on the three dot option on the top right corner
  • Tap on view contact
  • Tap on media visibility
  • The app will then prompt you with “Show newly downloaded media from this chat in your phone’s gallery?”
  • Choose No

Once you do this, WhatsApp will stop automatic downloading of media in in your smartphone’s gallery. Notably, the option to disable automatic download for a particular chat is valid for group chats as well.

For iPhone

  • Open WhatsApp
  • Tap on the Settings option on the bottom right corner
  • Tap on chats
  • Look for save to camera roll
  • Toggle it off

You can also manage your future preferences of downloading media on the iPhone by the following steps:

  • Open WhatsApp
  • Tap on the Settings option on the bottom right corner
  • Go to Data and Storage Usage.
  • Choose when WhatsApp will automatically download photos, audio, videos and documents.
  • Tap on each type of media, and choose Never, Wi-Fi, or Wi-Fi and Cellular.

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