In this article we have tried to list all possible ways of backing up your Android smartphone in an easy manner. However, before you go ahead with this, the one thing you should know is that Google links all your Android devices to your Gmail ID.
When you switch to a new Android smartphone, during the initial setup of the phone you will be prompted to restore from a backup of the devices that were/ are linked to your Gmail ID. In the event that you decide to switch to a new Android phone, but do not want to start personalizing it from scratch, the restore is a good option as a starting point. However, it won’t backup your SMS, Call logs, Music, Videos and Photos (if you haven’t backed it in Google’s ‘Photos’ app).
Further, some apps like WhatsApp have their own backup mechanism and are linked to your Gmail ID. WhatsApp for example, links your Gmail ID to your WhatsApp account number, pushing its own backup files to Google Drive. Whenever you install such an app, it will prompt you to restore from its own backup either from Google Drive or from its own server.
If the stock backup options aren’t thorough enough for you then this guide will walk you through the process of getting all your important information safe into a backup file.
Method 1: System utility backup software/ app by manufacturer
This is probably the best way to backup any smartphone or any phone for that matter. If your device manufacturer ships an app or software for the device then in most cases it comes with an option of taking a backup dump of your phone, which means that you need not to worry about anything after that.
To find such utility applications, you should ideally visit the manufacturer’s website first, check the manual of the phone if it is provided or can of course Google for the same.
Method 2: Cloud Backup (standard in all Android phones)
This option can be found in your Android phone’s Settings under ‘Backup & Reset’ menu. Companies that ship their phones without stock Android (tweaked UI from the phone brand) will also have this option, however, it will be tucked somewhere else in Settings menu.
When you choose to automatically backup your Android device data with this feature, it usually backs up your contacts, email, calendar, bookmarks, call history and app data to your Google Drive. The app data periodically saves your app settings and some files (not all) in the background. The data saved is based on developer settings/ permissions and Google says that it doesn’t include large files or the files a developer chooses to exclude from backup. This backup data doesn’t count towards your Google Drive storage quota, which is a relief.
The biggest dis-advantage in this method is that the it doesn’t backup your Music, Videos, Photos, SMS and Call logs.
For pictures and videos:
Google allows you to backup all your photos and videos to your Gmail account using ‘Photos’ app (standard gallery app in Android by Google). You can either choose to backup automatically or can selectively backup photos and videos of your choice when you want it. The photos backed up will count towards your Google Drive storage if you choose the backup the original file (high resolution or RAW file). The photos app also gives you the option to backup a high quality version as well, which won’t count towards your storage.
For SMS backup:
You’ll need to download a third-party app such as SMS Backup + (by Jan Berkel) from Google Play and follow the instructions. The backup is stored on your Gmail account provided by you in the SMS Backup + app settings, and can be restored on to the other Android phone via the same app.
Method 3: Backup through third-party Android apps
CLONEit by SuperTools
CLONEit app on Google Play is one of the easiest and fastest way to transfer data among two Android phones. If you’ve setup your new phone using the last connected device then all you are left with is your Call Logs, SMS, Pictures and Videos.
The CLONEit app works similar to Shareit and Xender, where you can connect two different devices and transfer contacts, messages (SMS and MMS), call logs, applications, app data, pictures, videos, music, calendar, and system settings (Wi-Fi account passwords, browser bookmarks).
Step 1: Install CLONEit from Google Play (on both devices).
Step 2: Run app on both Android phones and select ‘Sender’ or ‘Receiver’ according to your backup need.
Step 3: Once connected, select the things that you want to send.
The moment you install and run the app, it tells you if your device is rooted or in unroot state. The Backup and restore tool in the app helps you create backup and restore data, apk files (apps apk), app data, system settings, contacts, call logs, messages (SMS) etc.
Drawback of this application is that it doesn’t work with all Android devices.
There are few other popular backup applications available on Google PlayStore : ‘Helium – App Sync and Backup’ (by Clockworkmod) and ‘Titanium Backup root’ (by Titanium Track tools). But these applications do not completely backup your phone in free versions and can only best work in their paid versions.
Method 3: Backup using Computer
You can connect your Android device to your Windows PC with a data cable for manual transfer of files (videos, pictures). Bur for any Mac operating system, you’ll need to download the official Android File Transfer app from Android.com (https://www.android.com/filetransfer) and can follow the similar manual copy-paste process like Windows PC afterwards.
Third-party PC application
One of the best app out there for backing up data of your phone is SyncDroid (www.sync-droid.com). The free version (can only be used 5 times) of this app lets you backup your entire data from phone to computer or from one phone to another as well. Additionally the app lets you connect your smartphone via usb-cable or over Wi-Fi, but we would recommend you to backup your phones over usb connection only.
The free version of ‘Recovery Android’ PC application suit is another good application if you run out of the free version of SyncDroid.
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