An advantage that Android devices typically have over the iPhone is expandable storage. This means that photos, videos, and other media can be moved over onto an SD card, while the phone’s main memory can store apps, which can come in handy if you own a lot of media content.


However storage can still run low, despite our best efforts, but the good news is that Google wants to help with that. According to the folks at XDA, they have discovered that in Android 8.1, it seems that Google has made some changes to Android where inactive apps will have their file sizes reduced, meaning that apps that you rarely use will reduce their storage footprint on your phone to help free up some space.

Exactly how it goes about doing that does get a bit technical, but basically apps that have been marked as inactive aren’t run through dexopt, meaning that they don’t end up taking up space in the Dalvik compiler’s cache. If you’re a bit confused by those terms, XDA has pointed towards cyanidekiller’s guide for a deeper explanation.

However basically at the end of the day, your inactive apps will take up less space than your active ones. XDA notes that it’s not necessarily a silver bullet solution, but it works, although the next question is when will phones get the update, given that OEMs can sometimes take a while to push out the latest Android updates to their phones (many devices are still waiting on Android 8.0 at this time of writing).

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