How To Back Up An iPhone or iPad

iPads and iPhones are full of the most sensitive and important data; confidential text messages, emails, contact numbers, photos and calendar appointments. With each device being so full of vital information, even the slightest mishap can cause huge disruption. An update being installed wrongly, a software malfunction or even the loss of the device altogether can mean all of this crucial information is lost in one fell swoop.

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It is vital for iPad and iPhone users to back up regularly. Theft or loss of a device can be stressful enough, with the insurance claims and need to replace accessories such as iPhone cases or iPad keyboard cases without also having to worry about replacing the important data that is crucial to everyday living. Apple’s system was created so that both phones and tablets can be backed up on a regular basis and then restored to the exact state they were in at the time of the back-up. This means that when broken handsets and tablets are fixed, or when a new device is acquired, all the information that was on it previously can be restored, and the iPad or iPhone will function as it always did.

This guide outlines how to go about backing up an Apple product, be it an iPad or an iPhone, using iTunes. The entire process takes less than five minutes and guarantees peace of mind. It is worth getting in to the habit of following these steps on a regular basis –choose a set weekly or monthly schedule depending on how much new data you input to your device within each period.

1.      Using A Cable:

Connect the device to any computer with iTunes installed via the USB port. iTunes may automatically launch depending on the computer’s settings; if not, open iTunes and ensure that iCloud is disabled. No backups can be carried out through a cable when iCloud is activated.

Find the device in the list on the left hand side and right-click. The menu which appears will contain the option to back up. Click on it and ensure that the device is not disconnected during the time it takes for the information to be successfully transferred; a process which should take no longer than a few minutes.

2.      Wireless Syncing

To carry out a wireless sync without having to use a cable, ensure that the computer is in the proximity, and again ensure that iCloud is turned off on the device, whether it is an iPad or an iPhone.

Enter the settings menu, then choose ‘General’ and ‘iTunes Wi-Fi Sync’. Select your computer from the list which pops up. This will bring up an option to ‘Sync Now’, but it is often superfluous as any iOS device will sync automatically when the screen is locked, the device is connected to Wi-Fi and the device is plugged into a power source (charging at a plug socket or via a USB port).

3.      Restoring from Back-Up

In the case of needing to restore all data to a handset or iPad for any reason, simply launch iTunes and connect the new device to the computer. In iTunes, right-click (or CTRL + click if using a Mac) on the device in the panel on the left and select the Summary tab.

Click ‘Restore’ or ‘Restore from Back Up’, and a progress bar will appear on screen showing the restoration progress. It’s important to wait until the process has been completed before trying to disconnect the device.

Backing up an Apple device saves data including (but not limited to) call history, photos, text messages, contacts, alarm details, calendars, notes, voice memos, in-app purchases and any saved network settings. The only things not included in a back-up are apps, music, movies and podcasts, though if these have been downloaded from the iTunes store, they can be re-downloaded free of charge.

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