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Backing up your phone.

by ‎19-03-2018 19:37 - edited ‎20-03-2018 20:09 (92,515 Views)

From time to time you will have the need to back up your phone and transfer everything to a new one.

In this guide I'll try and talk you through the best ways to do this.


Staying with the same type of phone?


Android to android is easy as you will already have a Google account, so go into your settings and ensure all your options set up to sync, ie contacts, photos, videos etc.

When you login on your new phone, everything will sync automatically that you have chosen to back up.

Samsung in particular provide a software package that will also backup your phone, called Smartswitch and can be downloaded from here https://www.samsung.com/us/support/owners/app/smart-switch

Other manufacturers off similar programmes and apps so check if your phone is supported by searching on your favourite search engine.


iPhone to iPhone is again easy as you can back up your entire phone to iCloud. Just enable the option in your settings.

Settings >tap on your name at the top >iCloud backup and turn the slider on. Your phone will then back up when connected to wifi and on charge or if you choose to tap on "backup now" on the settings page.

You can also backup to iTunes and if you enable "encryption" all your app passwords will be backed up too which saves you having to re-enter them all. 

Download iTunes here https://www.apple.com/uk/itunes/download/


Windows to windows is also easy as your phone will back itself up to your Windows account, just make sure the default backup settings are correct and then when you enter your details on a new windows phone you will be asked to choose a backup to restore from (very similar to an iPhone). If you use OneDrive, you will find all your files and photos syncd there too.


Changing phones?


iPhone to android or android to iPhone isn't as bad as you think.

Samsung smartswitch (as above) will do it for you if your android is a Samsung and many of the premium manufacturers have similar software again.

If going from android to iPhone you can also back up everything to Google apps such as photos and contacts and then download those apps onto your iPhone. SMS are a little more tricky but you can sync all your SMS messages to your Google account with an app called SMSBackUp+ and then view them through the gmail app.

Smartswitch will also back up iMessages and import those into your new Samsung and if you own a Mac, you can use "weMessage" to send iMessages to and from android. 

It's still new and being developed but for a bit of fun, you can read about it here https://www.macrumors.com/2017/12/12/imessages-on-android-using-mac/

There are also a number of applications you can try to download your iMessages to your PC and also to send and receive. A search will reveal many options and one such is here https://imessageforpcc.com/

Please do your own research and validation of these apps as I have no personal experience of any of them.


Finally, I'll cover Windows to any other device (no point doing a goto Windows as the platform is now unsupported so very few will likely be going that way).

The easiest way of doing this is via Google and their individual apps, which, when installed and logged in to on your Windows device will sync all your data to be viewed on your new device through the same apps.

Another way, if your windows phone has an sd card, is to use the inbuilt "transfer my data" tool.

Touch the 3 dots (...), select "export to SD Card". Let it find all your Contacts, SMS and MMS messages. Select all >Start.
After it has exported your data, move the SD card to your Android device.
On Android get the VMG Converter from Animated Oak Entertainment (Play store). Free version converts 200 VMG Free, £1.90 version converts at least 10,000 VMG Paid for premium.

Let it find the vmsg file from the sd card.

Select all (or whichever ones you want).

Tap start and wait.


I've tried to make this as easy as possible, but unfortunately it's made deliberately difficult to try and retain customers on the same platform. That said, moving between iPhones and android (esp Samsung) has been made much easier recently.


If you find anymore tips or tricks, post them below and hopefully we'll be able to cover all eventualities for everyone

It would be nice if anyone could add any screenshots of you following any the tips in this guide too Smiley Happy


by Anonymous
on ‎19-03-2018 20:18

Excellent guide @MI5 well written & concise 

on ‎19-03-2018 20:32
Handy guide thanks for sharing it Smiley Happy
on ‎19-03-2018 20:59

This will come in very useful 😊

on ‎20-03-2018 09:15

Interesting guide @MI5. I have read it a few times in order to understand it and am obviously more interested in Samsung.

So a couple of questions please.

1) Is Smartswitch available for all Samsung phones irrespective of make and model? For instance can I get it on my Note 4 or is it already there and I have missed it?

2) With the newer Samsung phones you can transfer to another Samsung by using NFC and tapping the phones together back to back. If you have auto back up enabled on your old phone, would everything be transferred successfully?

No apologies for asking these questions. These are things I'm interested in and at least show I'm not paying lip service to your guide. Smiley Wink


on ‎20-03-2018 09:53
Smartswitch is available for a number of devices (not just Samsung), see compatible devices here https://www.samsung.com/us/support/owners/app/smart-switch
NFC I always find a bit hit and miss, so I deliberately ignored it, but some may find this an advantageous method.....
Hope that helps Smiley Happy
on ‎20-03-2018 10:10

Smartswitch is available for a number of devices (not just Samsung), see compatible devices here https://www.samsung.com/us/support/owners/app/smart-switch
NFC I always find a bit hit and miss, so I deliberately ignored it, but some may find this an advantageous method.....
Hope that helps Smiley Happy

It does and Smartswitch is now installed on my phone.

I mentioned the NFC method as both my husband and grandson used it when swapping from S5 (andS6) to S7 edge.

It was quite quick and 'painless' as far as I am aware. I just left them to get on with it Fear

on ‎20-03-2018 10:11
LG have an app that transferred everything (LG Backup).
You open the app on the old phone, choose what to backup and let it work.
Then you open the app on the new phone hit transfer and it moves everything over.
So much easier than it used to be - remember having to manually type every number in again? Oh the pain...
on ‎20-03-2018 10:19

@MI5Will this be added to the Index of Community guides?

on ‎20-03-2018 10:22
Waiting on Marjo Smiley Wink
on ‎20-03-2018 11:59

Well it's here but still not showing in the Index....(or maybe by the time I have written this it will be) Smiley Wink

on ‎20-03-2018 12:04

This guide will be helpful indeed, thanks for taking the time to create it @MI5!



Awesome to see additional tips too in the comments guys, well done. thumbsup


I'll add this to the index of guides. Smiley Happy

by Anonymous
on ‎20-03-2018 12:20

Thank you very much @MI5 ... interested in the Windows references as I have a Windows phone ... well written & in such a manner that even I can understand after several readings Smiley Happy 

by Community Manager
on ‎20-03-2018 15:46

Great guide @MI5! This is some really helpful information and it's great to have it all in one place. cool

on ‎20-03-2018 19:38
Good guide @MI5. Will be very helpful when we get questions on how to back up data etc.

Personally I love Smartswitch - it made light work of transferring everything from my old Note 4 to my new S8+.
‎25-03-2019 10:21 - edited ‎25-03-2019 10:22

I used Smartswitch when transferring from my S9 to S10, but somewhere along the line all my photos were moved from gallery into Google Photos and all from 2018 are missing, and now I can't add any photos to Facebook because I cannot access Google Photos from that app.


Thankfully, I had bought a Samsung Tablet and all my photos are on there in the gallery, but how do I get them back into the gallery on my new phone?

on ‎25-03-2019 10:27

Check the settings in the gallery app @janie37 - it might be that there are different sources that need to be ticked to allow access.

on ‎25-03-2019 10:33

Thank you, I'll check that!