Let your apps act as a camera when your phone says it’s too full to take a pic

Seeing this pop up on my phone makes me cringe.
Image: trevor boughton/Twitter

We’ve all been there. You get bombarded with “Storage Almost Full” notifications on your phone, but just keep rolling like the problem will magically fix itself. And then you hit that fateful moment: You try to snap a pic of that gorgeous vacation sunset and your phone says it literally can’t take one more picture.

There’s no time to start deleting everything, so you just don’t take the picture. Wrong. You life hack your way into the camera.

If you don’t actually want to pay for more storage and simply can’t get yourself to delete anything, here’s the move: All you have to do is take photos on some of your apps and save them to your phone.

My personal favorite app to use for this trick is Snapchat. Maybe I’m in the minority, but I already like to snap a lot of the things that I’m taking photos of anyway. So really, this method can make you more efficient even if your storage isn’t full. Here’s how you do it.

After you take a snap, there’s a little arrow over a bracket icon in the bottom lefthand corner of the screen. I took a snap at my desk and circled the “save” button in red in case you’re still confused.

Save away.

Image: molly sequin/mashable

When you hit that button, whatever you snapped will instantly be saved to your phone’s library. This works for videos, too, not just photos. I’ve been making Snapchat my undercover camera for quite some time now, and it has saved me during so many vacations, concerts, and big sporting events. The trick is definitely worth trying.

Now that you get the gist, start using almost all of your favorite social media apps to take photos when your camera tries to tell you it’s impossible. Facebook has an in-app camera that lets you save shots to your phone. Slack is another quick fix. Just take a photo within the app and send it in a slack (even if it’s just in a message to yourself). When it loads in the message, just hold it until a menu pops up. Click “save image” and go find it in your library.

Get in all of your other social apps and scope out how to take a photo in a pickle. Just be sure to allow all of your social apps access to your camera and microphone so you can actually take the photo or video in the first place.

If you actually want to get some storage back and take photos on your actual camera again, there’s a way. Here’s a guide to what you should delete first when looking for some extra room. But no matter what your storage is looking like, godspeed getting those pics!

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