How to backup your Android phone to the cloud

April 17, 2012
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As you may have heard, March 31 was World Backup Day. Geeks across the Internet were sharing pointers on making sure that your computer’s important data don’t get lost in an unfortunate accident and we here at Android Authority would like to share a few methods in making sure your phone information doesn’t go up in dust.

There are methods to store your important data locally–that is, on your computer’s hard drive.  (If you want to make local backups, check out our guide on how to make local backups of your phone data.)  But, some users would like the comfort that the cloud gives them. It’s being prepared, to the second level. You won’t need to worry about your phone, and you certainly won’t need to worry about your computer. Besides, cloud-based backups allow you to access your data through many other devices from wherever you are.

Information stored in the cloud also means that you won’t need to rely on wires to get that information back onto your Android device. Simply connect to the internet, connect to your cloud server of choice, and bring that data back into your phone. Read on to learn how to backup your Android phone to the cloud.

Backing up to your Google Account

One of the main benefits of Android is that you can connect your phone with your Google account. This means that you don’t need to worry about leaving your bookmarks in either your computer or your phone and having to go without them. Google’s linking to your device ensures that all your data is consolidated and easy for you to access. It’s this same connection that makes it easy to back your phone data up with your phone’s built-in settings.

If you’d like to keep your contacts, system settings, apps, calendar and email data on your Google account, simply go to Settings > Privacy on your phone. Check the boxes for “Back up my settings” and “Automatic restore.”  Make sure that under Backup account you specify the Google account that you want to backup data for.

Next, go to Settings > Account & Sync, tap on the Google account you want to sync, and check all the available options. This way, your data will be stored in your easy-to-access Google account.

Photos

For those of you with devices running Android 2.2 and higher, Google’s Instant Upload service allows you to upload photos and videos automatically. Enable Instant Upload and any photo or video you take is automatically uploaded to a private album on Google+ called From the Phone. Don’t worry, they’re visible only to you until you choose to share them. From the Google+ album, you can easily share them from your phone or from the web.

When you first sign in, you’re prompted to enable or disable Instant Upload. In case you weren’t able to enable Instant Upload, you can easily enable it through Menu > Settings.

If you’d like to upload your images to third-party sites, you can download Photobucket Mobile to automatically upload newly snapped pictures to your Photobucket account. You can also use Flickr Companion and Picasa Tool, both free apps that allow mobile uploading but don’t do so automatically.

Android Apps for Backups

inDefend Mobile Backup

You might remember this app from when we wrote about backing up your phone data to the cloud with inDefend Mobile Backup. The article itself has more detailed information, but in short, inDefend Mobile Backup is an application that allows you to easily backup your information, such as your contacts, call logs, text messages and your calendar, to the cloud. Restore them remotely from the cloud is also possible. You’ll need to create an inDefend Mobile Backup account to access your inDefend Mobile Backup features and cloud content.

inDefend Mobile Backup is available for free on the Google Play Store.

SMS Backup +

If you’ve got important text messages and you don’t want to waste precious time writing them down, there’s SMS Backup +. This free app automatically sends your SMS threads to Gmail and stores them under the label “SMS.” Not only that, SMS Backup + also backs up MMS and call log entries. SMS Backup + also allows you to restore SMS and call log entries back to your phone, but unfortunately restoring MMS back to your phone is not yet possible at this time. Future updates may resolve this issue.

You can download SMS Backup + from the Google Play Store.

Sandisk Memory Zone

Sandisk Memory Zone allows you to  backup files and apps from  your phone’s SD card to a cloud storage provider.  This free app from the world-renowned maker of flash memory cards can backup to and restore from the following supported services: Box, Dropbox, Google Docs, Picasa, SugarSync, and Facebook.

You can even schedule your backups and completely customize a backup plan to your liking. Once you’ve installed the app, it’ll scan your SD card and your device’s internal memory the first time you run it. You’ll be able to choose a cloud storage provider where you’d like to backup your data. Sandisk Memory Zone will prompt you for the frequency schedule of your backup, whether you’d like it to be backed up “only this time” or “everyday.”

Sandisk Memory Zone is available for free from the Google Play Store.

There’s no shortage of ways to backup your files and certainly no excuses. Make sure to backup your phone data before something unfortunate happens to your Android device. It’ll only take a few minutes of your time but will definitely spare you the heartache that unrecoverable data will cause.

If, for whatever reason, you prefer local backups to cloud-based backups, check our post on how to make local backups of your Android phone data.

What methods do you use to backup your important data to online storage services?

Comments

  • Franci Kapel

    “Google doesn’t have a native photo backup service yet, so you may want to look at third-party apps to safeguard your favorite snapshots.”
    Actually it does have. It’s called “Instant Upload” and is part of Google+ application:

    http://support.google.com/mobile/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=1304818

    • Phoebe Gonzalez

      oh help your link’s no longer valid…

  • kamal

    ok it’s the process of backup then how we can see the backup data in google…

    • Caro

      ok it’s the process of backup then how we can see the backup data in google…?

  • Matthew

    Continuing to use Backblaze’s art and logo…

  • soumkhane Peace

    Discover the latest apps and games. FREE and enjoy instantly on your Android phone or tablet.

    http://piratesystem.net/

  • http://www.syncers.com/2012/04/download-youtube-videos-online-free/ Karan Lugani

    Dropbox is doing great for me. So, no need of this backup. The Cloud Computing Companies are beating the traditional way of Google backing the data.

    • Dave Hust

      I didn’t know you could backup your contacts using Dropbox.

  • Kn0t

    Great stuff. I’m really glad I came across this. Now I have an entire backup of my phone.. Thanks you very much.

  • Dan

    To avoid the cloud for secure back up of your photos etc check out http://www.msecurityapps.com They have an app SP Safe that will take all your new data especially photos and push them into your personal storage device or network when you arrive at home or the office and it will do this automatically

    Dan

  • Mobile Backup

    Taking backup of
    mobile phone with StealthGenie is easy and advance. Because StealthGenie is
    providing awesome features to take backup of every data.

  • http://twitter.com/Muayyad9 Muayyad Shehadeh

    I use G Cloud Backup, its easier and free, and its backup everything on my mobile
    https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.genie9.gcloudbackup

    • Eric

      I can only get g cloud to back up calender data ect. not apps

    • Saahil Jaffer

      Thanks

      • Randolph Baez

        Saahil?? you go to Florida Inst. Tech?

  • Kingorcus

    How about MyBackup Pro . The top Android backup app that was there since the beginning of Android

  • Sam

    The experience I had on backing up to Google email contacts from my Android was a nightmare.

    I did as above instructions. Instead of the contacts on my phone being backed up to Google, my contacts on my phone were wiped clean because they were not on the Google email contacts. And those contacts that existed on both, the out-of-date contacts on Google were updated to my phone! It was a disaster.

    Be careful. NEVER, back up contacts to Google. It won’t work as you expect.

    • Doh

      Pffft. Amateur. Learn to do it right next time.

    • North Philly Fly Boy

      I have had the same contacts since 2004. I started with the contacts from aol that loaded into my sidekick which kept them in the cloud until I got my first android, the G1 and I have not lost 1 single contact. Google doesn’t overwrite contacts. They create duplicates and allow you to merge them. I even have my contacts spread across multiple gmail accounts. Whatever you did was definitely out of stupidity. Or you could just be lying.

  • Rasha

    I have 50 GB from dropbox , it was a gift when i bought note 10.1
    Very nice gift Thanx

  • Ahmad Al Kayyali

    G Cloud is a good choice too

  • triastanto

    MyPhoneExplorer is another good local option,

  • tata

    hi carl, i am so trying to download chrome on my kindle.. to no avail

  • Jamie Andrews

    What would be so much better? One app to do all of this. Otherwise this would be such a chore.

  • Patryk Grajewski

    Hi, If you consider backup your sms in the cloud I recommend to install ★
    Cloudy Sms Backup ★. This app can restore and
    backup your text messages (sms) and keep them in safe place on your
    Google Drive cloud. It is possible to convert everything into format
    like txt, xml, json, db file also to Google Spreadsheet and them you can
    convert it to xls, ods, pdf, cvs, html.

    https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.andromasters.cloudysms

  • Kumar

    You can try OngoSync App for Android devices. Call Logs, SMS, MMS, Contacts, any files, also Contacts/files can be shared between ongosync users. Data can be viewed/edited online thru ongosync.com

  • http://crunchytricks.com Rahul Gupta

    Quiet useful information here, Android backup is must if you browse internet daily on your Smartphone….