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When I sync my iPad, iTunes tells me that Video accounts for so many gigabytes of space, Photos another portion, etc. etc. But iTunes also tells me that a whopping 5.5 GB is being used by "Other". What could this possibly be? If it's not video, audio, photos, apps, or books, what's left taking up that amount of space? I don't have that many contacts...

Of course, you don't know specifically what is and isn't on my iPad. But any thoughts as to what this could be? I'd like to reclaim some of that space if I can.

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  • I believe it might be dynamic. Meaning if you only have a small amount of some type of data it is grouped into other.
    – John
    Feb 7, 2011 at 3:37
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    I had 6.3 GB of space taken up by OTHER, Tried deleting varies apps and files, still 6.3 gb. Decided to restore to see if that would help. After restore OTHER dropped to .76 GB
    – user24354
    Jun 22, 2012 at 14:39
  • I managed to free up 85G of Other by turning off iCloud in Settings→Photos. The account only has 50G of iCloud space, so those "optimized smaller versions" on the phone were taking over 1.5x as much space as the full size images!
    – unhammer
    Jun 20, 2021 at 12:56

4 Answers 4

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The stuff in the Other category is typically documents that have been deleted on the iPad, and also documents that are in use by various apps (for example, PDF documents that are in use by GoodReader, or docs from the iWork programs). Sometimes these documents are available via the Apps tab in iTunes, other times not; it depends on the program. For example, Documents to Go and GoodReader can manage their own documents outside of iTunes using Dropbox.

Deleted documents should be cleared out when you sync with iTunes. Sometimes, due to a known iTunes bug, the Other category won't shrink as expected.

There's more at these Apple Discussions threads:

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  • Links to Apple Discussions threads don't work now
    – Gleb
    Oct 4, 2017 at 8:45
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Well when I normally have that on my iPad it's just items I've put on it while I've had it attached to my computer as usb device, that means it's just like a usb drive where you can put folders (in my case backups) and stuff on.

It will normally show up in your explorer or on a mac in your devices list.

Maybe you should check there?

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  • That would make sense except that I've never used it in that way, meaning as a USB device. Anything that's on there I've put there via iTunes. Feb 7, 2011 at 1:04
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I just had the same issue....and per one of the answers above, deleted iBooks so they wouldn't sync but it didn't help. But then I scrolled down further and noticed "audio books" were checked. I unchecked that box and instantly my "other" went from 12.4 GB down to a trace.

So, many thanks for the lead!

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iBooks are counted as "other" storage.

My wife had over 27 GB of "other" space taken up on her iPad. I randomly decided to open up her iBooks app and upon deleting all of the books in that app, her "other" category dropped from 27 GB to virtually nothing.

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    I thought a category for "books" already existed? iBooks do not fall under that category?
    – dpollitt
    Mar 12, 2012 at 19:56

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