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I would like to know how to stop Mail app on iOS 9.3.5 from automatically downloading the mail attachments. It is taking a lot of space on my iPhone.

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Most attachments in emails are actually remote images. You can stop iOS Mail from downloading remote images as follows:

  • Go to Settings
  • Tap on Mail
  • Under the Messages heading, toggle Load Remote Images off

In terms of stopping other attachments (e.g. MS Word documents etc), there is no such option to prevent downloading these. However, the way it should work is as follows:

  • When your iPhone is connected to the internet via a cellular network, any email attachments over a certain size will not download automatically.
  • Instead, for these attachments you would have to manually select them in the body of the email to download them.
  • When your iPhone is connected to the internet via Wi-Fi, all email attachments will download automatically.

As far as I'm aware there is no way to stop this, although there may be 3rd party email apps that give you this option.

If you're sure that emails are taking up a lot of space on your iPhone, you may need to rethink how regularly you delete older emails. You can also filter emails by attachment and then delete the oldest ones to free up space. Another option is to set up a Mailbox for emails with attachments so it's easier for you to manually manage them.

  • what about disabling fetch in Mail options? – user12458 Jan 1 '17 at 12:40
  • @JavaTechnical Yes, this would automatically stop downloading attachments, but only because it stops automatically downloading emails altogether! – Monomeeth Jan 1 '17 at 22:34
  • First option only stops images from external servers to be loaded (mainly a privacy feature), but not images embedded in the email. Second option doesn't work either as embedded pictures are not considered attachments. Problem: People send me emails with megabytes of images, while I have just a weak edge network. I'm waiting for an important text email, but it is blocked while trying for hours to load those stupid images. On MacOS Mail, you can give a size limit above which loading has to be confirmed. This option would be more valuable on the iPhone. – Philippos Mar 29 '18 at 16:30
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goto mail > preference > Accounts select particular accounts and in AccountInformation tab set DOWNLOAD ATTACHMENT value to NONE.

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