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How to Move Apps to SD Card on Samsung Devices

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Feeling the pinch of a nearly full phone? Moving some apps to your SD card can be a quick and easy way to reclaim valuable storage space on your Samsung device. While not every app can make the jump, freeing up just a few gigs can make a big difference in how smoothly your phone runs.

Quick Summary

→ Open your phone’s Settings app. → Then tap on Apps, or Application Manager. → Select the app you wish to move and tap Storage. → Look for the Change option that says “Change” or “Move to SD card.” → If you don’t see it, this app can’t be moved. → Tap on the Change button to start the process and choose your microSD card as the location. ↦ Then wait for the app to be moved. ↦ When successful, you’ll see the new storage location below the app name. 

screenshot from list of apps with the reset app preferences highlighted
Any App Storage settings from the device settings
storage settings for app highlighted screenshot
move button

If the app won’t move for some reason, your phone should give an error message or a warning. ↦ Common reasons for failure include not enough free SD card space or the app not being compatible. ↦ If you do run into problems, try restarting the phone and repeating the steps. ↦ Or you can try formatting the SD card as portable storage which erases everything but may fix the issue.

Let’s dive into the specifics and get your apps safely settled on their new SD card home!

Prerequisites:

Before we embark on this storage-saving journey, ensure you have the following:

  • Compatible with most recent Samsung Galaxy phones and tablets. Check device specs if unsure.
  • Use a high-quality microSD card with UHS-1 or faster speed rating (class 10 or A1 recommended).
  • Get a 32GB or 64GB card to start. Consider your storage needs.
  • Can format as portable storage or internal storage in your device’s settings. Portable is simpler.

Exact Steps for Moving Apps to External Storage on Any Samsung

Method 1: Using Built-in Storage Settings

  1. Open the Settings app on your Samsung device.
  2. Tap on Apps.
  3. Find the app you want to move to the SD card.
  4. Tap on the app name, then select Storage.
  5. Look for the Change option under Storage used. If it is missing, the app can’t be moved.
  6. Tap SD card.
  7. Tap Move.
  8. A progress bar will indicate the move’s progress. You may see warnings about potential performance impact; acknowledge them and proceed.
screenshot from list of apps with the reset app preferences highlighted
Any App Storage settings from the device settings
storage settings for app highlighted screenshot
screenshot of changing storage locations from internet to sd card
move button
moving my apps to sd card

Method 2: Using Samsung’s “My Files” App (Optional)

This method offers more flexibility but requires some technical know-how. For detailed instructions, please refer to the official Samsung support page: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K-bX7KXgl5Y

Tips and Considerations

  • In my experience, not all apps can be moved to the SD card. System apps, some pre-installed apps, and large games typically can’t.
  • I prioritize moving large apps and ones I don’t use often. This frees up more internal storage.
  • When I’ve moved apps to the SD card, I’ve noticed slightly slower loading times and occasional stuttering. So performance can take a small hit.
  • I look for apps that have a “Move to SD Card” option built into their settings. This makes it easy.
  • If you run into issues after moving an app, I suggest trying to move it back to internal storage. Performance is generally better, in my case.
  • Overall, I recommend using the SD card for media storage and less frequently used apps. This lets you get the most out of your device’s internal storage.

Troubleshooting

  • In my experience, if the Change option is missing for an app, that means it can’t be moved to the SD card. Not all apps support this.
  • I make sure to have enough free space on my SD card before trying to move apps. If needed, I’ll delete files or use a higher-capacity card. Running out of room mid-move can cause problems.
  • There were a few times when moving an app failed even with enough space. Restarting my phone and trying again to fix it.
  • As a last resort, I’ve had to reformat the SD card as portable storage when the normal troubleshooting steps didn’t work. Just be warned this erases everything on the card.
  • Overall I recommend having at least 10-20GB of free space on your SD card before moving apps. This gives you breathing room. And take things slow – only move one app at a time till you get the hang of it. That’s what worked best for me when getting started.

Conclusion

Moving apps to your SD card is a handy way to expand your Samsung device’s storage capacity and keep things running smoothly. Just remember the limitations, prioritize wisely, and enjoy the extra breathing room for your favorite apps and files!

Feel free to leave a comment below if you have any questions or share your experiences with moving apps to your SD card.

I hope this guide has been helpful!

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Maruti
Maruti

I'm Maruti Kashyap, your Samsung tech expert with over 10 years of experience. Find troubleshooting guides, performance tips, and app recommendations at GuruSamsung.com. With access to global Samsung service centers, I'm always up-to-date on the latest. Join me for a seamless Samsung experience.

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