Skip to content

How to compress and extract files on iOS and Android?

In today’s world where collaborative work and smartphones have become increasingly important, streamlined data sharing is still a hurdle faced by many, be it due to weak internet connections or poorly managed files. But, a solution to this problem exists in the form of compressed files, which contain one or more files in a reduced size, thus, helping users to transfer larger amounts of data in a single package or manage it better.

With the release of iOS 13 and Android 9 Pie, both major smartphone platforms offer built-in file managers, which allow for compression and extraction of data. Here we explain how you can compress a file to save space or uncompress/extract them to their original form in iOS and Android devices.

Why should you use compressed files?

As mentioned earlier, compressed files allow users to move larger packages of data at once in a reduced size. This reduction is achieved by either lossless or lossy compression of data. The most popular formats used for such files are .RAR or .zip.

Some benefits of compressed files are mentioned below:

  • They allow users to compile files related to a topic into a single folder, promoting better management of data, easy sharing and one-click downloads.
  • These allow users to share more information over emails which are limited to 20MB.
  • They save storage space which may have been utilised by rarely used files which contain large amounts of data.

Also read: How to stop WhatsApp from downloading media automatically?

How to compress files on iOS?

  • Open the Files app.
  • Locate the file or folder that you want to compress.
  • Long press on them to bring up the Action menu.
  • Tap on Compress.

How to compress multiples files into a single Zip folder on iOS?

  • Open the Files app.
  • Tap on Select in the top-right corner.
  • Select the files or folders that need to be compressed.
  • Tap on the circular icon in the bottom-right of the screen (indicated as More on iPads) and choose Compress.
  • These can now be found in a zipped file named archive.zip.

How to extract/ uncompress files on iOS?

  • Open the Files app.
  • Locate the zipped file on the device.
  • Long press to bring up the Action menu.
  • Tap on Uncompress.

In iOS, a file can also be uncompressed with a single tap on the zipped folder.

On iOS, a zipped file has to be uncompressed to view its contents, however that isn’t the case on Android.

Also read: How to use Find My on your iPhone or iPad?

How to compress or extract files on Android?

With Android’s open-source nature and variety of OEMs, the file manager situation is not as simple as iOS. Smartphones may have either the device manufacturer’s application or Google’s Files app (named Downloads on Android 9 Pie), third-party managers can also be downloaded from the Play Store. Do not worry though, the process to compress data is similar across the Android OS. Here we’re using Google’s version of the file manager, Files app.

Do not confuse Files on Android 10 with Files Go. Users on Android 8 or earlier will need to use third-party managers for full functionality unless their device has a pre-loaded file manager.

Before we get started, please make sure that the device’s internal storage can be viewed, the steps to do so have been listed below:

  • Open Files (Android 10) or Downloads (Android 9 Pie).
  • Tap on the three-dot icon in the top-right corner.
  • Select Show internal storage.
  • The device should now be visible within the hamburger menu on the left.

Also read: How to set up OBS on a laptop?

Compressing files on Android?

  • Select the smartphone or external storage from within the hamburger menu.
  • Locate the file that needs to be compressed.
  • Select the file for compression with a long press.
  • Tap the three-dot icon in the top-right and choose Compress.

How to compress multiples files into a single Zip on Android?

  • Select the smartphone or external storage from within the hamburger menu.
  • Long-press on a file to enter selection mode.
  • Locate and select all the files that need to be compressed.
  • Tap on the three-dot icon in the top-right and choose Compress.
  • All selected data can now be found in a compressed file named archive.zip.

How to extract/ uncompress files on Android?

  • Select the smartphone or external storage from within the hamburger menu.
  • Locate the file that needs to be uncompressed.
  • Tap on the zipped file to view its contents.
  • Now, select the files within the zip, that need to uncompressed.
  • Tap on the three-dot icon in the top-right and choose Extract to.
  • Decide the location for the extracted files and tap on Extract in the bottom right.

Also read: Top 7 free screen recorders for Android

Hello There!

If you like what you read, please support our publication by sharing it with your friends, family and colleagues. We're an ad-supported publication. So, if you're running an Adblocker, we humbly request you to whitelist us.

We may earn a commission if you buy something from a link on this page. Thanks for your support.







>