The Voice Memo app is being overhauled in iOS 12. It’s mostly a design overhaul but it seems to have a new option that lets you replace a part of the recording with new recording. The new interface is much less cluttered than the old one and it has one little under-the-hood feature that you might never know about; iCloud syncing. If you have iCloud enabled on your iPhone, then all your voice memos are being synced to it. You can’t access them via iCloud in your browser but they’ll sync to your Mac. If you don’t want voice memos to take up space on iCloud, you can disable Voice memo sync.
Disable Voice Memo Sync
This is pretty simple; open the Settings app and tap your Apple ID at the top. On your Apple ID page, scroll down and tap iCloud. Scroll down the iCloud screen and look for Voice Memo. Turn the switch off and your voice memos will no longer sync to iCloud.
That’s about it. If you’re on macOS Mojave, you might want to dig around and see if the voice memos have synced to your desktop and are taking up space. Deal with them however it is you want.
While you’re on this setting screen, you might want to go through the rest of it because a few more Apple apps are now syncing over iCloud such as News. iCloud sync is basically what iOS and macOS use to make hand-off work. Hand-off allows you to leave a task on one device and pick it up on the other but voice memos might not be one of the things you need to resume working on.
It’s a shame that the voice memos can’t be accessed from iCloud’s web interface. It would be far more useful and users on an iPhone or iPad could access them from the Files app. Since the voice memos can’t be accessed from the Files app, you can’t open them from another voice editing app on your iPhone or iPad. If you want to open a voice memo in a different app on your device, you’re going to have to upload it to a different cloud storage service like Dropbox or Google Drive. This makes it all the more pointless to sync them to iCloud unless you intend to edit them on your Mac. Even in that case, it’s better to sync them via iTunes and save the precious space that iCloud offers you, for your photos.