Although storage space is rapidly becoming cheaper with 2 TB hard drives becoming more and more prominent, laptop space is still at a premium. And whether you use a laptop as your main computer or not, it is important to trim the digital fat wherever you can so your machine runs smoothly. Of course, carrying around an external hard drive wherever you go is an option. But why would you when you already have an excellent hard drive on your smart phone? We'll give you suggestions how you can make your phone do double duty while easing the load of your laptop.
One benefit to this method is the justification for spending more on a phone with a larger storage capacity. You should always keep a hard drive at your home, away from many of the dangers inherent in carrying it around everywhere. So instead of buying a second hard drive to supplement your storage needs, why not add the cost of a second external to your phone budget, upping your storage capacity and ultimately its flexibility?
One easy way to clean a nice chunk of your hard drive is to completely remove your music collection. All of our music is stored on your iPhone. Whenever we want to listen to something we plug in the phone, bring up iTunes, and simply play the music straight off the device. Of course as with any important file, it's good to keep it backed up on at least two devices. Keeping an external hard drive at home is a safe bet.
Although we've recently began transferring our photos over to our iPad (which also works in this example) keeping your photos on your phone is a great option. Beyond freeing up space from your laptop, this allows you to take your photos around with you, thus expanding the once limited photo wallet into potentially hundreds of images to show off your family, friends, pets, trips, and whatever else you happen to take pictures of. Additionally, we've loved the usage of iDisk on MobileMe (which is anticipated to switch over to a free storage service soon) and its ability to store photos and share them easily via private download links you can send to friends and family. The iDisk App allows you to access all of these things from your phone.
We think the ultimate app for handling all text-based/PDF documents is GoodReader. You can sync multiple file formats directly to it and bypass the typical iTunes route. This is especially helpful if people find the iTunes syncing process to be cumbersome, particularly for quick uploads/downloads. Goodreader also works well with Dropbox.