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Your Android Phone’s Web Browser Has Junk Files You Can Easily Remove

TL;DR: Android web browsers accumulate unnecessary data from visited websites. Regularly clearing your cache and cookies can remove junk files, free up space, and protect your privacy. The process varies slightly depending on the browser (Chrome, Samsung Internet, Firefox), but is generally straightforward and accessible through settings.

Why Clearing Cookies and Cache is Important

Your Android phone’s web browser collects a lot of data from the websites you visit. Some of this data is unnecessary and could even be a privacy risk.

Cookies and cache can be helpful in some cases. They allow you to quickly load frequently accessed websites and keep you logged into accounts.

However, a lot of what ends up building up within your cookies and cache is just plain junk. Some of it could be from websites you’ve visited just once.

Others seem to be actively tracking your browsing history. This helps serve up advertisements based on what you are buying or streaming online.

It’s good to clear out your cache every so often. It allows you to remove unnecessary data from your phone, especially if an unknown data tracker is among your cookies.

Clearing your cache is a minor inconvenience. You’ll have to log back into some of your favourite websites, but it’s a small price to pay to ensure your phone isn’t stocking up on extraneous data.

The steps differ slightly depending on the type of phone and web browser app you’re using. Here’s how to clear this data for Google Chrome, Samsung Internet, and Mozilla Firefox.

Google Chrome

To delete your cookies and cache from the Android version of Google Chrome:

  1. Tap the More button (three dots) in the top right corner.
  2. Tap History, then Clear browsing data.
  3. You can also access this from the Chrome Settings menu, tapping Privacy and Security and then Clear browsing data.

Chrome offers Basic and Advanced settings for clearing your:

  • Browsing history
  • Cookies and site data
  • Cached images and files

Use the Time range drop-down to select how much data to delete. Tapping Advanced gives you access to deleting:

  • Saved passwords
  • Autofill form data
  • Site settings

After selecting what to delete, tap the blue Clear data button. Chrome may deem certain websites as “important” to you and prompt for confirmation before clearing.

Samsung Internet

There are two ways to clear your Samsung Internet browser’s cache and cookie data:

  1. Within the browser itself
  2. Through your phone’s Settings app

To clear within the Samsung Internet browser app:

  1. Tap the Options button (three horizontal lines) in the bottom right corner.
  2. Tap Settings, scroll down to and tap Personal Data.
  3. Tap Delete browsing data to get a menu of options to delete:
  • Browsing history
  • Cookies and site data
  • Cached images and files
  • Passwords
  • Autofill forms
  1. After tapping Delete data, you’ll receive a prompt to confirm your choices before deleting.

To clear through your phone’s settings:

  1. Open the Settings app.
  2. Tap on Apps, then scroll down to and tap Samsung Internet.
  3. Tap Storage.
  4. At the bottom of Storage, you get separate options to Clear cache and Clear data.

Tapping Clear cache will immediately delete the cache. Clear data brings up a prompt warning that all of the application’s data will be deleted permanently, including files, settings, accounts, and databases.

This “going nuclear” approach should zap all remaining data, letting you restart the Samsung Internet browser as if it were brand-new.

Mozilla Firefox

To clear the cache within the Mozilla Firefox Android app:

  1. Tap the More button (three vertically aligned dots) on the right of the address bar.
  2. Tap Settings and scroll down to Delete browsing data.

Firefox gives you the most options under the Delete browsing data menu, allowing you to also delete:

  • Open tabs
  • Browsing history and site data
  • Site permissions
  • Downloads folder
  • Cookies
  • Cached images and files

While you can’t pick a time range as you can for Chrome, you can be more specific regarding what type of data you would like to remove.

Firefox has an additional option for those who never want to keep their browsing data after they’re done using the app. Inside Settings is a Delete browsing data on quit option.

This instructs Firefox to wipe any combination of these same settings every time you quit the application. It’s useful if you’d like to keep the browser tidy and avoid accidentally handing off your browser history to someone who may have gained access to your phone.


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