Apple says iOS 16 will clear out all your duplicate photos to save space

Photos Ios 13 Iphone Xs Max Hero
Photos Ios 13 Iphone Xs Max Hero (Image credit: iMore)

What you need to know

  • Apple's iOS 16 update will make it easier to remove duplicate images in the Photos app.
  • A new duplicate detection system will scan the Photos app for what it thinks are duplicates and offer them up for manual checking.
  • iOS 16 is set to ship this fall.

Apple announced its next big iPhone software refresh during its WWDC22 opening keynote on Monday and one of the features that will be part of that release is sure to be a popular one among those with smaller capacity iPhones. According to Apple, iOS 16 will now offer a quick and easy way to rid yourself of duplicate photos.

Having an iCloud Photo Library filled to the brim with duplicate photos is something that is surprisingly easy to do, but clearing those duplicates out is also something that can be surprisingly difficult. With iOS 16, Apple seems keen to fix that with duplicate detection. It doesn't sound like it could be any easier to use, either.

Photos identifies duplicate photos in Albums > Utilities so you can quickly clean up your library.

That makes it sound like we're dealing with a couple of taps and done, something that is a long way from having to jump through the hoops previously associated with the same process — and one that tended to require downloading an app and trusting it with access to your photos.

Apple's iOS 16 is sure to be the best iPhone release yet, but you'll need to wait for it to arrive. The big iOS 16 update won't land on devices worldwide until this fall, although developers already have beta 1 in their hands as of right now. A public beta is going to be made available to intrepid testers next month, too.

Oliver Haslam

Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too. Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.