Breaking or losing your phone or tablet sucks. But what sucks even more is losing all the precious data on your device.
Be smart and make a back up copy of all your important information and files. With a backup, you can easily restore your data to a new device and be back up and running in no time.
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Backing up the data on your Android phone or tablet is actually really easy to do. While there are many apps that you can download and install that will help back up your data, these are the easiest ones.
The simplest and easiest way to back up your Android device is through Google using the built-in Android Backup Service feature.
To turn it on, go to Settings > Backup & reset, and make sure "Back up my data" is turned on. These are instructions for Google Nexus devices, but you can usually find the setting more or less in the same location within the Settings app depending on your specific device.
With Android Backup Service, the following settings will be saved into Google Drive for restoration later: Google Calendar, Wi-Fi networks and passwords, home screen wallpapers, Gmail, apps installed through Google Play, display settings, language and input settings, date & time, and third-party app settings and data.
Samsung devices all come with their own backup service. To back up your phone or tablet through Samsung, you'll need to sign up for a Samsung account.
Once you've got a Samsung account, go to Settings > General > Backup and reset > Back up my data (under Samsung account) and then log in.
Inside, you'll see options to back up select data for Accessibility settings, Clock, Contacts, Email (Priority senders and Spam addresses), Messages and Phone. You can also turn on Auto backup, which starts an hour after your device is charging, connected to Wi-Fi and the screen is off.
LG also has its own backup feature built into its devices, which backs up "data such as LG Home screen, settings, apps and contacts" to the phone's storage, a microSD card or LG Cloud. If you get a new LG device, you can restore these settings easily without setting the phone up as new.
To access LG Backup on an LG device go to Settings > General > Backup & reset > LG Backup.
If you don't trust the cloud to store your data, you can always back up your files the old-fashioned way: locally to your computer.
To transfer files like music, photos, videos, and documents to your computer, first connect your device to a computer either through a microUSB or USB Type-C cable (on newer devices). On Windows, your Android device will show up as an external drive and you just need to drag and drop the files you want to transfer from it to your computer's hard drive.
Mac users will need to download and install Android File Transfer for their Macs to recognize their Android device; it's also a drag-and-drop process to transfer files from Android to a Mac.
Backing up photos
There must be at least 101 ways to back up your photos. You could use any number of free or paid cloud services like Google Drive, Microsoft OneDrive, Dropbox, Flickr, Box and Amazon Photos (for Prime subscribers). Each one has its own pros and cons.
Our favorite is Google Photos, which lets you store an unlimited amount of photos at (up to 16 megapixels each) and videos (up to 1080p resolution). You really can't beat free.
Backing up all your photos to Google Photos is easy and all you have to do is download the app onto your device and let it upload everything into the cloud.
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