How to Delete iCloud Backup from iPhone or iPad


In this tech short we’ll quickly look at how to remove an iCloud backup from your iPhone or iPad. This is important because if you have an older device backed up it could be using valuable limited iCloud storage space that you need for your existing devices. It’s important to note that when you delete an iCloud backup from your iPhone or iPad none of the files, photos, apps, phone numbers or other contact information on your device is deleted. The only information that gets deleted is in the backup, which is a copy of the information from your iPhone or iPad that you chose to back up.

Some of the images associated with the steps are included inline below. All images associated with these steps can be seen in the embedded YouTube video. Also, please note that you’re not able to leave a comment directly on this article. If you have a question or feedback, please leave it on the YouTube video.

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Steps to Delete iCloud Backup from iPhone or iPad

  1. Launch the “Settings” app, and then tap your name at the top of the menu.
Launch the Settings app, and then tap your name at the top of the menu.

  1. Tap “iCloud” on the Apple ID screen.
Tap iCloud.

  1. Tap “Manage Storage” on the iCloud menu.
Tap "Manage Storage" on the iCloud menu.

  1. Tap “Backups” on the iCloud storage screen. The Info screen is shown, and any devices or backups currently in iCloud are listed in Backups.
Tap "Backups" on the iCloud storage screen.

  1. Tap the iPhone or iPad iCloud backup you want to delete.
Tap the iPhone or iPad iCloud backup you want to delete.

  1. Tap “Delete Backup” at the bottom of the Info screen.
Tap "Delete Backup" at the bottom of the Info screen.

  1. Tap “Turn Off and Delete” when prompted. You’ll see a deleting message before landing back on the Info screen, where the backup size for this device will be zero. You can resume backups for this device at any time by re-enabling backups.
Tap "Turn Off and Delete" when prompted.

Reasons to Delete an iCloud Backup from iPhone or iPad

1. Free Up Storage Space

Limited iCloud storage can hinder users from saving new data or creating fresh backups. Deleting outdated or unnecessary backups makes room for more important files, photos, and documents. This action helps in optimizing the available storage and ensures users can save new memories, update apps, and install system updates. By effectively managing storage, users maintain a neat and organized cloud space.

2. Privacy Concerns

Data privacy is a significant concern for many individuals. Deleting iCloud backups minimizes the risk of unauthorized access to sensitive information, such as personal photos, messages, and financial data. This proactive measure helps protect against potential data breaches and ensures users have control over their digital footprint. By removing backups, users take an important step in safeguarding their information.

3. Outdated or Irrelevant Data

As users upgrade devices or change settings, backups can become irrelevant or outdated. Deleting these backups reduces clutter and makes it easier to locate current data when needed. By maintaining only essential iPhone and iPad backups, users can avoid confusion and frustration when trying to restore or access their data. This approach keeps iCloud organized and ensures the backups stored are meaningful and useful.

4. Device Management

Users with multiple devices connected to their iCloud account may find it necessary to delete backups from iPhone or iPad devices they no longer use. This practice streamlines the backup process and prevents unnecessary backups from occupying valuable storage space. By managing device backups efficiently, users can focus on the devices they actively use and keep their iCloud account clean.

5. Troubleshooting

Sometimes, users may face issues with the backup process or data restoration. Deleting and creating a new backup can resolve these problems, ensuring data integrity and functionality. This method can also help with diagnosing persistent issues by eliminating potential causes related to the backup itself. By addressing these concerns, users can maintain a seamless and error-free iCloud experience.

6. Migration to Another Service

When users decide to switch to a different cloud storage or backup service, they might want to delete iCloud backups to prevent redundancy. This transition helps users maintain a consistent backup routine and avoid confusion. By removing the iCloud backups, users can ensure they have a single source of truth for their data and simplify the management of their digital storage.

7. Accidental Backup

In case a user inadvertently creates a backup or backs up the wrong iPhone or iPad, deleting the unnecessary backup can prevent confusion and storage wastage. By removing such backups, users maintain an organized iCloud account and avoid potential issues that could arise from restoring incorrect data. Deleting accidental backups ensures users only store relevant and essential information in their iCloud storage.

About Max

Max has nearly 20 years of experience working in IT across three different industries in project management and management capacities: publishing, telecommunications and healthcare. He holds the following degrees and certifications: BS Communications, MA Communications, MBA and Project Management Professional (PMP). His tutorial-focused YouTube channel earned more than 100,000 subscribers in its first four years, and currently has more than 160,000 subscribers, 110,000,000 video views and an insane 2.4 million hours of watch time. Max enjoys learning new technology, reading and collecting comic books, listening to audiobooks and playing video games.

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