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What is cache? Everything you need to know about cache

You may have come across the term ‘cache’ when using your computer, scrolling through the internet or online shopping, but what is it and what does it actually mean?

Read on to learn what cache means, why most of our devices use cache and how clearing your device’s cache data could help it to work faster. 

What does cache mean?

Cache is a form of data storage that occurs whenever you use the internet. It stores content and data from a website, such as text, images, company logos and videos. Storing this content means the browser or app doesn’t need to download it again the next time you visit the page, subsequently speeding up and improving your user experience.

Without a cache, devices including smartphones and computers may not perform as quickly as they should do. 

Having said that, although useful in speeding up our internet use, cache can actually end up reducing the speed of our devices over time. A cache can even pick up corrupt files and malware too, which is why it’s important to clear your device’s cache.

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What does it mean to clear cache?

Over time, stored cache data can start to slow your phone’s browsing performance down. This is because it takes up storage space in your device by keeping the content. To help boost your device’s browsing performance, it’s a good idea to clear out the cache. 

Clearing cache essentially means you’re deleting all the stored content over time and freeing up space on your device. Although you can’t do this with your device as a whole, you can clear each app and browser’s stored cache.

You shouldn’t have to worry about doing this too frequently, otherwise that negates the point of the cache storing in the first place. If you notice your device is starting to slow down or not performing as well, then that’s a good indicator that you should clear your cache. Otherwise, just once or twice a year should be enough. 

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