How to Backup Your Android Data in 2022 – A Detailed Guide

Phone on a table with user folder icon and a cloud with safety upload icon
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How To Backup Your Android: Device A Quick Guide

Backups are crucial if you want to keep your files safe. Whether you lose your phone, someone steals it, or you need to format it because of a virus, you won’t have to worry about your photos, contacts, and documents. With a backup, you can access them instantly. Here’s how to create a backup for your Android phone:

  1. Go to your phone’s settings.
  2. Go to Accounts and Backup
  3. Tap on “Backup data” and enable it.
  4. This option will periodically create a backup of your Android files.

Apart from backing up your Android device, it’s also important to stay wary of harmful threats. Using a VPN is a great way to protect your internet traffic and keep your device safe.

The modern Android smartphone incorporates many different devices in one. You can get turn-by-turn GPS directions, store your entire music library, capture photos and videos in an instant, and even apply for a home mortgage in just a matter of minutes. These conveniences have made our Android phones indispensable to our lives.

But what if something were to happen to your phone? What would become of all the irreplaceable information you have stored there? At that moment, a recent backup of your Android phone could make the difference between panicked anxiety and a calm, deep breath. Read the guide below to find out more, and additionally check out our guide on privacy settings in Android.

Why You Should Back Up Your Android Phone

Life is stressful enough. We live in a busy world full of constant demands for our attention. And owning a smartphone can contribute to the stress of our lives, even as it aids our productivity and enjoyment. Losing a phone or having it break will almost certainly cause you to lose all your important data. You will lose all the files that were on your phone, such as:

  • Your address list of phone numbers.
  • Your photos and videos.
  • Any documents you may have saved on your phone.
  • Notes that you saved on your Android device.

But how great would it be if you knew that in just moments after getting a new phone you could not only have all your data restored but also your settings? From the stored WiFi passwords and connections to everything else, backing up your data makes it so that in case you want to switch to another Android phone, you can get all of your settings, files, and information back within a matter of a few minutes.

And it’s not just about losing your phone. Sometimes, an upgrade is sorely needed. In that case, you won’t bother transferring your files manually or reinstalling your apps one by one. Just restore the backup, and you’ll get everything back on your Android device, including your wallpaper, your ringtones, your personal preferences, everything.

How To Backup Android Phone From Settings

If you’ve owned an Android phone for a few years, you may recall that making a backup used to be a very difficult and time-consuming process. If that has kept you from making a backup in the past, good news! It’s now very simple to back up the information on your Android phone thanks to the latest updates.

In the step-by-step guide below, we’re using a Samsung Galaxy device. Most other phones have very similar processes for creating and reverting to a backup.

  1. Log in to your Samsung account. If you don’t have one, make sure you create it before trying to create a backup. The backup system for most phones works with cloud services from the phone’s manufacturers.
  2. Navigate to your settings on your Android device.
  3. Screenshot of Android device, Settings menu
  4. Click on the “Accounts and Backup” menu. If you have any other device, just search for “Backup” by clicking on the search icon in the top-right.
  5. Screenshot of Android device, Accounts and backup menu window
  6. Tap on “Back up data.” On a Samsung Galaxy, this option will enable the phone system to back up your data periodically.
  7. Screenshot of Android device Back up data window
  8. You can select the data that you want to back up. Just toggle the options as per your preferences, and then tap “Back up now.

So how about other phone brands? Here are the differences in process on other popular phones:

  • LG V series: Almost identical steps as above.
  • Xiaomi Mi: The backup settings are nested in the “Mi account” main settings menu.
  • Google Pixel: The backup settings are nested in the “System” main settings menu.
  • OnePlus: You need to download the Phone Clone app from OnePlus. It’s all handled there.

How To Backup Android Phone With Google Drive

The guide above works by storing your data in the cloud from Samsung. Most other phone manufacturers also use their own cloud storage for backups. But you don’t have to use it if you don’t want to bother creating an account for it.

  1. Go to Settings.
  2. Select Accounts and backup.
  3. Tap on backup data under Google Drive.
  4. You can then view the data that you want to back up, including the backup details. This includes apps, photos, SMS messages, call history, settings, and account data.
  5. Tap on Back up now to start the backup.

Screenshot of Android device Google Backup window

It’s important to note that Google also runs backups periodically. You can set the frequency or view when the last backup was run.

How To Backup Android Device Data To A PC

There may be times when you don’t want to bother with cloud storage. For example, what if you want to make a backup on an external device? That’s just one of the many situations where backing up to a PC is a great idea. And there are a few ways you can pull it off. The easiest way is to use dedicated apps like Dr. Fone, APowerManager, or SyncDroid, which also works for iOS devices.

But while that is the easiest way, it’s definitely not the fastest. If you want to create a quick backup, here’s what you’ll have to do:

  1. Make sure you have a cable that plugs in USB on one end, and your phone on the other end.
  2. Plug your Android phone into your PC. Let your PC do an initial set-up, so your Android files are visible from your PC.
  3. You will get a notification on your Android phone about the USB connection. Click on it.
  4. Make sure that “File Transfer” or “USB File Transfer” is enabled.
  5. Copy all of your Android Files.
  6. Paste them in a dedicated folder on your PC.

This is a fast process since you’re just tapping into mass storage, especially if you know what you want to backup, but it might take longer the first time around. There’s no point in saving system files, for example, so you need to make sure that you don’t copy those to your PC.

How Do I Restore Data from a Backup?

If you switch to a new phone or have to restore your phone to factory default, you will want to restore your previous backup. For most phone brands, you’ll need to go back to that backup menu and click on “Restore.” On a Samsung Galaxy, you can download the Smart Switch app. Here’s how to restore data from a previous backup:

  1. Go to Settings.
  2. Tap on Accounts and backup.
  3. If you have Smart Switch, just tap on Bring data from old device.
  4. If you want to transfer files from external storage, tap on External storage transfer.
  5. Follow the on-screen instructions to restore your backup.

So what about restoring your apps and files on a new phone? When you first set up a new phone or begin setting up your reset phone, log into your Google account as you generally do, and you will be given the option of restoring your phone from the backup. Agree to that option and follow the given steps, and your phone’s data and settings will be restored.

How To Protect Your Android Device From Hackers

One of the times people wish they had a backup is when their phone gets infected with malware. Sometimes, deleting a recently installed application will be enough. But other times, a complete reset of your phone is required. And that means you’ll lose all of your files. So a backup will come in handy if you’re ever in this scenario.

But a hacked phone doesn’t just mean the risk of losing your files. It can also cause a breach of your privacy, compromised login credentials, and even loss of funds if your banking data is hacked.

If you want to avoid all of that, here’s what you can do:

  1. Use a VPN. Good VPN services like ExpressVPN have Android applications, so you can install them on your mobile phone and keep your network protected.
  2. Lock your phone with a secure password or PIN.
  3. Stay safe on public wi-fi networks.
  4. Clean up your phone regularly. Delete old apps, and screenshots that you won’t use anymore.
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Backing Up Your Data Is Essential

Backing up your data is absolutely necessary, especially considering just how smart hackers are getting. By turning on the backup settings for your Android (as well as on your computer, iPhone, iPad, or Mac), you get the peace of mind that you have multiple backups available and can easily restore one. It’s always a good idea to be careful with your data and have multiple backups.

How to Backup Your Android Device in 2022 - Frequently Asked Questions

If you’re not sure how Android backups work yet, don’t worry. Below, you’ll find our answers to the most frequently asked questions on creating Android backups.

If you want to backup your entire Android phone, you can do so automatically from Settings > System > Backup. If you want a detailed guide on how to do it, as well as how the process works for different phone brands, read our entire article here.

If you’re logged into the two phones with the same Google account, you can use Google Drive to backup your Android phone, and then restore it on the new phone. If one of those phones is a Huawei, you can also use Huawei’s Phone Clone app. For a detailed guide on how to do it, read our article here.

Most new Android phones have periodical backups automatically enabled with a Google account. But it’s not exclusive, so it doesn’t hurt to check your settings and see if your phone automatically backs up. If you’re not sure where to look, read our article on Android backups here.

Backing up Android data on a computer is pretty easy. You just need to plug your Android phone into your computer with a USB cable and transfer your files from your phone to your PC. If you need a more detailed breakdown, read our article here.

Backups on Samsung phones can be done with a Samsung or a Google account. Just make sure you’re connected to your phone with either one. After that, open your settings and look for the “Backup and Recovery” menu. There, you’ll find the option to enable periodical backups on either Samsung cloud, or Google Drive.

Yes, backups of your Android phone can be saved to a Mac, but it’s only possible with special apps like Samsung’s Smart Switch. It’s much easier to do it on a PC, or directly on the cloud. If you want to see guides for all of these options, read our article on how to backup your Android.

Tech writer
Theodor is a content writer passionate about the newest tech developments and content marketing strategies. He likes privacy-friendly software, SEO tools, and when he's not writing, he's trying to convince people they should uninstall TikTok.