When you have problems with an application, the typical solutions are to restart the mobile, clear the cache, force close an application and when nothing works, clear app data, also called clear storage.
This solution was helpful in solving the WebView issue, although it is okay to leave it as a last resort as its effects are more destructive than clearing the cache. Cache is consumable, but data is not, so you will lose application progress and configuration. We tell you how to clear app data and what happens while doing it.
How to clear app data
If you need to delete data from an app, there are several ways to do it. Basically, you need to go to the app info window, where the permissions used by the app are displayed. There are several ways to access this window. For example, in relatively modern versions and in launchers that support it, you can do a long press the app icon and tap the information icon
If this option is not available on your mobile, a safe way to access it is through Android settings. As usual, the settings change from one version of Android to another and in the different layers of customization, but in almost all cases the mobile will have a section of Applications in the settings. Next, tap on the app whose data you want to delete. You may need to press See all applications for it to come out.
Below you will see the window with application information. The design may be somewhat different from the screenshots shown here (which are from Android 12), but it’s normal to see the name of the app, its icon, and a series of sections with settings.
Then touch Storage or similar names. Inside you will see the data on the occupation of the application, its cache in its data and two buttons: one for clearing the cache and another for erase data or storage
Keep in mind that deleting data from an app is irreversible. Unlike cache, which is consumable data and can be regenerated, an app’s data will not be recovered unless the app retrieves it from your account after login or similar.
What happens when deleting data from an app
The space that an application occupies on an Android mobile is divided into three parts: the application itself, its data and the cache. The data includes all configurations and databases, so when you delete them, the application returns to its factory state, without any configuration.
Therefore, two things can happen. If it’s an app that saves all your data and settings in the cloud -like most Google apps- the configuration will be downloaded from their servers after you log in with your account and you can continue to use it as usual. The only difference in these cases is that the welcome window is displayed and you might lose some of the configuration.
If it is an application that saves its configuration on the mobile, you will lose all progress, all settings and basically everything. It will be as if you have just installed the application for the first time on your mobile. The only exception is data that the app will save separately to the mobile, such as photos from a camera app. It stays.
On another side, clearing app data also clears cache. That is, if you have just deleted an app’s data and also want to clear the cache, the button appears disabled because it cannot be: it has already been deleted.