Free iCloud Storage - what ?
This is a post I've not been sure if I should publish or not but today I thought it would be a good idea to share what I found with everyone else on the internet.
I needed to come up with a creative solution because I've had issues with iCloud ever since it became a thing and I refuse to pay a monthly subscription for a service that essentially doesn't work for me as it should.
ICLOUD PHOTOS IS NOT MY PRIMARY SOURCE FOR PHOTOS IF ICLOUD PHOTOS IS YOUR PRIMARY SOURCE FOR PHOTOS DO NOT FOLLOW THIS GUIDE
iCloud from my point of view is an unreliable messy over complicated ecosystem that simply put does not work from my point of view and this guide has a primary focus of me not paying for a service that doesn't work, if iCloud is working for you IGNORE this post.
The internet is also completely littered with people having issues with iCloud and being told to turn it off and turn it on and not get to the root cause of the problem therefore this guide is more for those people as Apple don't enable you to have it free while they're diagnosing your issue which I find totally unacceptable
It relies on you manually remembering to do certain tasks but essentially what it means is you pay once for your correct storage subscription and then as long as you remember you never have to pay again for iCloud storage
I have been using this method successfully for about 3 months now
So if you want to see if it works for you and I'm sure it will as apple will probably be totally incapable of stopping you do this as it's part of their terms and conditions to enable you to do this.
So let's get started....
1) First you need to sign up to the correct iCloud subscription which enables you to upload your photos to iCloud
If you already have your photos uploaded you can immediately skip to step 2
This means this is a one time payment so essentially you only pay for the first month and you can get or future months on iCloud for free as as according to iCloud your not using the storage, intrigued read on.....
2) Disable your iCloud photo library which I think is now mark as disable and delete, you need to make a note of the date and time when you select this option
3) This essentially put your iCloud photo library into read-only mode but you then get 30 days before it's deleted
4) You will then notice your photo storage is not counted as being part of your iCloud storage
5) you are then safe to downgrade your iCloud storage to the default free amount which doesn't cost you any money
5) You now have 29 days of free storage and at the end of day 29 click undo delete and disable option on your iPhone, this Mark your iCloud photo library has not been disabled therefore it will use up the storage once again in iCloud
6) if you are on the free plan and you're using more than your storage when you undo the delete and disable you will get a warning about your iCloud being full but that does not delete any data
7) once you notice your storage is full again go back to the photos option and click delete and disable you then get another 30 days free on iCloud
8) repeat this process for as long as you can be bothered to do it for, or in many cases until you forget to complete these actions
I have been using this method for quite a while now and it seems to work however I have no need to upload photos during the 30 day Grace period you get before date is deleted from iCloud
I upload data monthly to iCloud photos because as I've had so many issues with it this service is not my primary photo storage service I'm using Google photos for that which does a better job
WARNINGS (blog author accepts no responsibility for data loss)
If you actively use iCloud photos this hack is not for you as for a month no photos will be uploaded to iCloud photos as essentially your library is read-only
If you forget to undo the deleted disabled after 30 days your data will be irreversibly deleted
if you have other devices syncing with your iCloud photos and decide to use this route make sure you have a disconnected copy on your Macbook as in the iCloud photo library box is not ticked