iTunes, iCloud, alternative software and third-party cloud services.
Test versions of iOS, jailbreak experiments, the constant transition from device to device, crash tests, as well as tons of software from the App Store and bypassing it – these are not all the reasons why I have ever lost important personal data from the iPhone.
But similar difficulties are encountered not only by scorched geeks who always have no peace. Despite the incredible reliability of Apple technology, for important information that you don’t want to lose, you still need to prepare copies in a safe place.
To protect you from possible annoying misunderstandings, I brought together all personally verified backup options.
1. iTunes and backup to your Mac or PC hard drive
Advantages : with backup via iTunes you can access information without the Internet – even in a clean field. Moreover, this is one of the fastest options to save almost all data from the iPhone.
Disadvantages : sorry, but to backup or restore data without a computer will not work with all desire. Backing up information from a large iPad Pro to a MacBook 12 is especially funny . ” Plus – the copy takes up a lot of disk space, which is very noticeable on a Mac with small SSDs.
What you can save : almost everything except content from the App Store and iTunes Store (it will be downloaded via the Internet), iTunes-synced content (imported audio recordings, and so on) stored in cloud photos (for example, iCloud photo stream), Touch ID and Apple settings Pay. Please note that some data requires backup protection with a password.
How to do it : it’s simple – just go to iTunes, go to the device tab and click one single button to create a copy or restore it.
My opinion : I’m backing up my MacBook Pro to the hard drive only before some kind of stressful moment – installing a test version of iOS, jailbreak and so on. In other situations, I prefer other types of preservation of personal information.
2. Alternatives to iTunes for backups on the example of iMazing
Advantages : with their help, you can not only access data without the Internet, but also feel like a real geek who uses not only standard software. In addition, alternatives may be more convenient in specific cases – for example, to quickly save photos to your hard drive.
Disadvantages : for all backup processes, you still need a computer, access to which is not always available.
What can be saved : almost the same amount of data that iTunes saves (but different applications may have their own nuances).
How to do it : in most cases, a backup in iTunes alternatives is created or restored by pressing one or two buttons (for example, in the same iMazing ). But each specific option may have its own nuances – in some solutions, you can separately save messages, contacts or other data.
My opinion : in some cases, the use of alternatives for iTunes may be more than appropriate – especially on PCs, for which Apple’s program is simply not tailored. It works extremely awkwardly even on fairly powerful computers. But on the Mac myself, I still today tend toward a standard solution.
3. iCloud as iPhone cloud backup storage
Advantages : in this case, the computer is not needed. And that’s great.
Disadvantages : the potential payment for a large amount of storage for those for whom free 5 GB is too small. Plus – without the Internet, all this is useless.
What you can save : almost everything except data previously saved in iCloud, data from other cloud services (for example, Gmail), Apple Pay settings, Touch ID settings, content from the App Store and iTunes Store.
How to do it : you need to go to the backup menu from the iCloud section in the system settings of the device (Settings – iCloud – Backup) – all the necessary functions are available here.
My opinion : despite the fact that today I only use Apple devices ( MacBook Pro , iPhone and iPad ), many interesting services have been “living” with me since the time of my first Android-smartphone (HTC Wildfire, if memory serves). So my main cloud is Google Drive, not iCloud. And in the latter, I rarely have enough free space for backups.
4. iCloud and Apple branded services for saving data from iPhone
Advantages : data is synchronized in real time. And during recovery, you can safely use the device. This is especially convenient when, for example, you are testing a new iPhone from partners. You enter your Apple ID data, and personal information is slowly being pulled over the Internet, without distracting from using the device.
Disadvantages : not all information can be saved here – this is not a backup copy. The main thing – you need to spend a couple of minutes to set up a new device. And to restore you need access to the Internet.
What you can save : photos, mail, contacts, calendars, reminders, Safari bookmarks, notes, Wallet data, a music collection in Apple Music, and so on. The vast majority of modern mobile applications can work with iCloud Drive, and it can be very convenient.
How to do it : a set of data synchronized in iCloud is available from its section in the system settings of the device (Settings – iCloud) . Since many third-party applications can store information in iCloud Drive, you need to delve into their settings. Other Apple branded services (such as Apple Music) provide access to information after entering the Apple ID.
My opinion : despite the fact that iCloud Drive is far from the main repository of my personal information, its free volume is constantly occupied by the data of some applications (there are just a lot of text files from Byword here). And it is very convenient. And about the coolness of modern Apple branded services, I generally keep quiet – what is only Apple Music worth. And he successfully stores all my data in himself without any outside help.
5. Third-party cloud services for storing information on the example of Google
Advantages : the greatest versatility and access from any device. For example, branded Google services are perfect for users who complement the work with the iPhone Android smartphone.
Disadvantages : iOS limitations (after all, Apple favors branded services), the ability to save far from all the data, and the need for Internet access.
What you can save : mail, contacts, calendars, notes, as well as photos in Google Photos, music in Google Music, files in Google Drive, and so on. And the same story with other similar services – for example, files of any type can be safely stored in Dropbox, and they will not go anywhere even in the most emergency cases.
How to do this : setting up synchronization of mail, contacts, calendars and Google notes is available from the corresponding section of the device’s system settings (Settings – Mail, addresses, calendars) , and downloading other data is configured from each individual third-party application.
My opinion : if you use several devices from different manufacturers (maybe you have a PC instead of Mac or Android instead of iPhone ), it will definitely be convenient for you to store the basic data in Gmail – mail, calendars and contacts. In other cases, it is better to put all your information in the hands of Apple – it’s more convenient.
All at once to minimize the risk of losing important records
I myself have immersed myself so much in cloud services that I completely do backup copies of the device only as a last resort. And all I lose is just the settings on my iPhone. Although the risks still remain.
And for maximum confidence in the safety of personal data, you can use all the described methods together – regularly make backups in iTunes and iCloud, as well as duplicate all the most important information in the cloud services (you can even several). This is the best option, because the rule “do not store eggs in one basket” has not been canceled yet.