2 Ways to Quickly Delete Photos on Your iPhone or iPad

Oh, how I wish Apple had built this into their Photos app.

Don’t get me wrong, I love finding apps that uniquely and thoroughly solve problems or save time, but I have an aversion to app-clutter.

Especially when an existing app could have added the needed features that I can only obtain by adding another app!

I’m talking about the issue of how to manage the number of photos that we seem to collect on our iPhones.

In my experience with helping others, keeping too many photos and struggling to organize, manage and delete them is a universal challenge. And when your iPhone doesn’t have enough memory or it’s too full to back up to iCloud, the culprit is usually too many photos.

The original photos that you have taken with your iPhone or saved from a text or email are located in either the Camera Roll album or the All Photos album. Explaining why you might have one over the other is an explanation for a future article!

Deleting photos from the Photos app can be a slow process. If you have very many pictures and want to view each one as you decide whether to delete or not, it takes multiple steps.

You must swipe through the photos, then touch the trashcan when you want to delete one and finally confirm that you want to delete it. This gets old very quickly!

Thankfully, there is an app for that! It’s called Cleen, and it is a much faster way to view and delete pictures saved on your iPhone.

Clean accesses your Camera Roll or All Photos album, plus any other albums you’ve created. You select the album you want to review, and as you swipe through the photos, the direction that you swipe automatically categorizes the picture as Trash, to be kept for later, or a Favorite. If you make a mistake, it’s very easy to undo with a backwards swipe.

How to use Cleen

  1. Download the app onto your iPhone or iPad.
  2. When you open the app, you will need to allow Cleen to access your Photos.
  3. The start screen shows you the swiping actions you can use.
  4. Touch Get Started and reply to the pop-up about Notifications. I chose “Don’t Allow.”
  5. The main screen shows either your Camera Roll or All Photos album, plus any other Albums you’ve created.
  6. Touch an album to open it. Simply use your index finger to swipe and sort the photos. It’s really just a quick little flick. Swiping to the left basically does nothing. It keeps the photo in the album and moves to the next photo. Swiping up will put the photo in a Favorites folder. Swiping down will put the photo in the trash but not delete it yet.
  7. You can undo any swipe by dragging a picture out of Favorite or Delete.
  8. Photos that you did not send to Favorite or Delete are categorized as Later. They are still in their original albums, but to go through them again on Cleen touch the Later tab at the top.
  9. When you are ready to delete all the photos in Trash, touch the trash can, Delete All and you may have one more pop up for a final Delete.

****This is very important! When you delete a photo with Cleen, it will delete it from every album in which it was saved. This is different from the way the Photos app deletes from Albums.

If you have large groups of photos to delete and you don’t need to preview them individually, the Photos app does have a faster delete solution.  By selecting the Photos view instead of Albums, you can view and delete all the photos in a Moment, which the iPhone has automatically organized based on location and date.

How to delete groups of photos

  1. Open the Photos app and touch Photos in the bottom left corner.
  2. If the top of the screen doesn’t say Moments, touch a group of photos until it does.
  3. Touch Select in the top right.
  4. Touch select beside each group of photos that you want to delete.
  5. You can deselect individual photos within a selected group by touching to uncheck them.
  6. Touch the trash can and confirm that you want to delete.

How to get your deleted photos back

What if, after you’ve cleaned out your iPhone’s photos, you suddenly have “deleter’s remorse?” All is not lost. Your deleted photos are kept in a Recently Deleted album for up to 30 days and you can select photos that you want to un-delete. After 30 days, they finally disappear from your phone.

Because these deleted photos are still taking up space, I recommend that you give yourself a day or two and then open the Recently Deleted album and Delete All.

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