How to backup an iPhone or iPad

Our iPhones and iPads have become a huge part of our lives. They store our photos, videos, documents and other imortant files, losing which could lead to not only emotional distress, but also financial losses. There is no question that keeping this data safe is extremely important. One  way to make sure that you do not lose your files, even if something happens to your device, is by backing them up.

iPhone backup

iCloud backup

An easy way to back up your data is by using the iCloud service. Each Apple user has 5GB of free available storage. This storage can be used to keep your files, messages, calendars, contacts, and more. If 5GB is not enough, you can upgrade to 50GB ($0.99 per month), 200GB ($2.99 per month) or 2TB ($6.99 per month).

iCloud backups are easy to use as all you need is an iCloud account, which is normally created during the set up of your new device. If you go to Settings on your device and tap on your name and picture, you will see iCloud. Once you tap it and go to the bottom of the Apps using iCloud list, you will find iCloud Backup. If you toggle on it, your device will automatically start backing up your data each time that it is plugged in and connected to Wi-Fi.

iPhone backup

Local backup

Another way to backup your files is by adding them to your computer, which is an option best suited for users who worry about the security of the cloud. The first thing you will have to do is connect your phone to your computer. In the top left corner, you will see an icon of a phone. If you click on this icon, you will be presented with the menu for the device. After you select Summary, you will see three boxes, including one entitled Backups.

local backup

In Backups, there are two sections: Automatically Back Up and Manually Back Up and Restore. If you select This computer under the Automatically Back Up section, your data will be automatically backed up each time that you connect your device to your computer. If, on the other hand, you decide that you want to back up your files manually, you will need to click on the Back Up Now button on the right-hand side.

iTunes backup

Media content like books, music, films, and TV shows that you buy from iTunes, iBooks and the App Store are not included in the iCloud backup. You can, however, back them up using your iTunes backup, which stores backed up data on your computer.

The alternative iTunes backup type is encrypted backups. Encryption provides users with an additional security layer. Encrypted files can only be accessed through a password that you create yourself. Encrypted backup is done in the same way as an unencrypted one, the only difference is that you tick the encrypt option Once you do this, you are also asked to create your password. Keep in mind, however, that this password is only known to you. If you forget it, you will not be able to use your backup.

Third-party service backup

Of course, having a backup of your backup is never a bad idea. That way you can make sure that your files are saved no matter what. Thankfully, there are quite a few free third-party services that you can use like Dropbox, Google Drive, OneDrive, Flickr, and many more. Most of these storage services also come with automatic syncing, so using them is just as easy as using iCloud.

It should be noted for those who choose to go with the Google Drive service that it will not back up your messages and your music library. It will, however, store your contacts, calendar, photos and other relevant files. Using Google Drive is especially convenient for those who wish to switch from iPhone to Android as all data stored on the Apple device will reappear on the Android.

If you decide to download and set up an additional backup, make sure that you go to its settings and turn off the Use Cellular Data option, so that you do not get any additional charges on your phone bill.

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