The cache and cookies on your Android phone add up fast. How to clean them

If your android phone If you use Google Chrome, Firefox or Samsung Internet, your browser collects and stores data every time you browse the web. This information makes up your cookies and cache, and helps your phone quickly log into your accounts and load frequently visited sites.

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But this data eventually adds up, taking up space on your phone, and probably also includes cookies that are track your browsing history with the intention of serving personalized advertising. (I’ve been seeing ads for glasses after visiting some online stores to compare prices and styles, as well as for cruise vacations after looking at some possible getaways).

It doesn’t hurt to clear this data from time to time to keep your web browser snappy, running efficiently, and ideally storing as few tracking cookies as possible.

On Android, the steps differ slightly depending on the type of phone and the web browser app you’re using, so here’s how to clear this data for the Google Chrome browser (often the default for many Android phones like Google Chrome). the google pixel line), Samsung’s Internet browser (often the default on Galaxy phone series) and Mozilla’s Firefox browser. You can also check out our separate guide on how to clear your cache in an iPhone web browser in case you also have some Apple devices to clean.

The “Clear browsing data” menu in Chrome on Android.

Screenshot by Mike Sorrentino/CNET

Google Chrome

You can delete your cookies and cache from the Android version of Google Chrome by first touching the button plus button in the upper-right corner of the browser, indicated by a column of three dots, then tapping Historyafter Delete navigation data. You can also access this from Chrome Settings menu, touching Privacy & Security and so Delete navigation data.

Chrome also offers Essential Y Advanced settings to delete your browsing history, Cookies and site data Y Cached images and files. you can use the Time interval dropdown to select whether you want to delete all history or a selection of anywhere from the last 24 hours to the last four weeks. touching Advanced will also give you access to delete saved passwords, Autocomplete form data Y Site Settings. After selecting what you want to delete, tap the blue Delete data button. You may receive additional notice if Chrome considers certain websites “important” to you, and if so, you’ll have an opportunity to confirm before deleting them. Otherwise, if you don’t get that message, Chrome will immediately proceed to delete it as you instructed.

read more: Get rid of Google Chrome and use this privacy-focused browser instead

Samsung Internet

“Clear Data” and “Clear Cache” options for Samsung Internet.

Screenshot by Mike Sorrentino/CNET

There are two different ways to clear the cache and cookie data of your Samsung Internet browser. You can delete from the browser itself, or you can go through your phone’s settings app.

To erase while in the Samsung Internet Browser app, first touch the button options button in the lower right corner represented by three horizontal lines, then Settings; scroll down and touch Personal informationthen play Delete navigation data to get a menu of options to remove. you can delete your browsing history, Cookies and site data, Cached images and files, passwords Y autofill forms in any combination. after touching Delete datayou will then receive a message asking you to confirm your choices before deleting.

Going through the browser app itself provides the most customization of what you want to remove. However, if you want to access similar options from your phone’s settings menu, open the Settings app and touch Applicationsthen scroll down and tap Samsung Internet and so Storage.

At the bottom of Storage, you get separate options for clear cache Y Delete data. touching clear cache will immediately delete the cache, but Delete data displays a message warning you that all app data will be permanently deleted, including files, settings, accounts, and databases. While it doesn’t specify cookies, this “going nuclear” approach should delete all remaining data, allowing you to restart Samsung’s Internet browser as if it were new.

read more: Change these Android settings to get the most out of your phone


As with Google Chrome, you can clear cookies and cache from the Mozilla Firefox app for Android. To access this feature, touch the button Plus button to the right of the address bar, again symbolized by three vertically aligned dots. then play Settings and scroll down to Delete navigation data.

The “Clear browsing data” menu in Mozilla Firefox on Android.

Screenshot by Mike Sorrentino/CNET

Of the three browsers we are discussing here, Firefox gives you the most options under the Delete navigation data menu, allowing you to also remove any existing open tabsits browsing history and site data, site permissions and even you downloads folder next to Cookies Y Cached images and files.

While you can’t choose a time range like you can for Chrome, you can be more specific about the type of data you’d like to delete.

read more: Browser privacy settings to change ASAP in Firefox, Chrome and Safari

And Firefox has an additional option for those who never want to keep their browsing data once they’re done using the app. Within Settings there is a Clear browsing data on exit option, which tells Firefox to clear any combination of these same settings every time you exit the application. This is a useful feature if you want to keep your browser tidy and, for example, avoid accidentally handing over your browser history to someone who may have stolen or gained access to your phone.

For more information, check out everything you need to know about Google’s new operating system, Android 13included how to download the beta. Also, take a look at CNET’s list of best android apps and something settings you’ll want to change on your current phone.

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