There are over 1.2 billion users of WhatsApp globally. About 200 million of those are in India alone. In fact, for most smartphone users in India, it is one of the first apps they download. It is the default way of texting in the country. However, for many people globally, it can be annoying when the app automatically downloads and saves photos, music, videos, and even pictures. Not only will it clatter your Samsung phone’s gallery and music player; it will also use up a lot of storage space. Here is how you can stop it from making automatic downloads to your phone.
For Android Devices
Most people who use WhatsApp probably do it on their Android devices. These devices are popular since they come at all price points for any user. For as little as $80, anyone can own a reliable Android phone that works with WhatsApp. Here is how to turn off downloads.
Open WhatsApp on your phone and make sure you are on the main window where all the chats appear. On the top right corner, there are three dots. Tap on them and tap on settings.
After that, tap Chat Settings and go to Data and Storage usage. You will see three options:
- When using mobile data
- When connected on Wi-Fi
- When roaming
Tap on each option and disable the auto-download feature by unchecking all the three options of Images, Video, and Audio.
For you to view photos, an audio clip, or video, you will need to download them by going to each chat and clicking on the media. When you do, WhatsApp will save them to a folder labeled WhatsApp in your phone. If you do not do this, your phone could be filled with sometimes offensive or stupid memes, which can be viewed by anyone who accesses the Gallery app on your phone.
How to Stop Auto-Downloads on iPhone Devices
Preventing WhatsApp from saving media on your iPhone is also possible via the settings menu. To do this, open your WhatsApp app on iPhone and tap on the setting button located at the bottom-right of the device and tap on Data and Storage Usage. You will see the option for Media Auto-Download at the top. For photos, Videos, Audio, and all other media pick “Never.”
Now, only the files that you chose to download to your iPhone will appear on your phone. You even have the option to stop videos and photos from appearing in the Camera Roll. All that you have to do is go to Chats in the Setting menu. Here, you will open the Save to Camera Roll option and turn it off. It will stop pictures and videos people send from showing up in your camera roll. This will ensure that the app is not going to take over the Synched Photo Stream system. As a result, they will remain within the device locally and will not appear on other Apple devices you own.
For those who own Windows phones, these are steps they will follow to stop auto-downloads and the saving of any media by your WhatsApp app.
Open your WhatsApp app and click on the three dots located at the bottom of the Chats window. Tap on Setting and go to chats and calls. From there, tap on media auto download. Click on images and pick the option “Never.” Do the same for audio, videos, and all other options that may come up in new WhatsApp updates. By doing this, media will no longer be automatically downloaded and saved on your windows phone. You will only download content when you need to do it.
For your BlackBerry device, open the WhatsApp app and go to settings by clicking on the three dots. Click on media settings, in the media settings, tap on media auto download. In this area, you will find three menus. These are:
- When Using Cellular data
- When Using Wi-Fi
Go to each option and turn off all the three listed options and any additional ones that WhatsApp may release in future updates. It will ensure that only photos you wish to download are saved in your phone.
WhatsApp also saves huge chunks of data, which you can delete to free up space on your phone. To do this, you will simply need to go into the folders app on your phone. Long press on the WhatsApp on your phone and click delete. Do not worry; this will not delete your WhatsApp app. It will only clear all the media and other data that had been saved to your phone automatically. You should also not worry about your chats disappearing; they will still be intact when you go back to your WhatsApp app. Now you can go into the chats and download the media that is most relevant to you.