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This is why you need to backup your phone

Don’t ignore this simple but necessary step.

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THIS WEEK ON Live A Better Life, we’re looking at all things tech, and bringing you expert info on how to make the tech side of smartphone ownership a cinch.

Today, we’re tackling something that a lot of us ignore: backing up our phones.

Live A Better Life is all about making your phone work for you, and backup is essential for having a harmonious relationship with your phone.

Why? Well for one thing, just think of the huge amounts of data you have on your phone: photos of family and friends, voice memos, videos, all sorts of things.

What if you lost or broke your phone tomorrow? Then some of your data could be gone forever.

As MacWorld puts it:

Backing up your iPad or iPhone is easy to do, and it’s also incredibly important – if we had to give three pieces of advice to iPhone (and iPad) owners, they would be back up, back up, back up.

Or as two of our staff members here put it:

I lost loads of photos of my dog that died. Now I backup everything.
I lost all my WhatsApp chats a couple of months ago. In some ways it was a nice, enforced detox but in other ways I felt like I lost a written history.

Apples and Androids

If you’re an Apple user, Apple says that:

If you back up your iPhone, iPad or iPod touch, you’ll have a copy of your information to use in case your device is ever replaced, lost, or damaged.

But first, you must choose a backup method: iCloud and iTunes. Here’s a page that outlines the difference between them. You can make a backup in both, if you want.

Here’s the full guide to backing up with iCloud or iTunes. The first thing you need to know is that connecting to a wifi network is pretty much essential for this.

You can increase storage in your iCloud – but it costs money. Here’s more info on that.

If you like to backup your phone using iTunes, make sure to store your password somewhere safe, because as Apple says, “there’s no way to recover your iTunes backups without this password”. If you want to save your Health and Activity data, you need to encrypt your backup.

If you’re an Android user, you’ll know that your Google account comes in very handy for backing things up.

The backup is pretty simple – go to Settings > Accounts (Google) > Select Google account> and then check everything you want to sync.

Here’s more on backing up Android devices.

There is also Backup and reset, in your settings, which should be enabled. Everything should be backed up to your Google account.

Backing up individual apps

There are also ways to backup some of your most-used apps, like WhatsApp. There is an option to backup your chat history depending on what phone you have.

On some phones, you’ll need to make sure to manually backup those chats before you uninstall the app.

If you want to backup your photos, use something like Google Photos or Dropbox, which enable you to access your photos from a PC or mobile device. Google Photos in particular comes highly recommended by our team in here.

One way to wirelessly transfer photos and videos is the Photosync app, which also comes recommended by staff in here. It can be used across a range of devices and computers.

Do you backup your phone regularly? Tell us in the comments.

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