How to back up an iPhone
Option 1. Backing up your iPhone to iCloud
Chances are your data is already secured on iCloud, even if you didn’t know about it. But to make sure the function is turned on for your iPhone, go to Settings and then:
Tap on [your name] > iCloud > iCloud Backup > Tap the toggle in case it was set to off.
- 50GB for $0.99 a month
- 200GB for $2.99 a month
- 2TB for $9.99 a month
- App data: Files that your apps, including third-party apps, have downloaded or created during use.
- Apple Watch backups
- Settings: Things such as language and region preferences, alarms, home screen and app arrangement, display brightness, and more. Your HomeKit devices are also saved the way you have them set up.
- Call history, iMessage, text (SMS), and MMS messages
- Photos and videos: Pictures and videos that are in your Photos app
- Purchase history from Apple services, like your music, movies, TV shows, apps, and books. The backup only contains the list of purchases. The files themselves are not backed up, but you can download them again if you restore the backup.
Using Messages in iCloud and iCloud Photo Library
Option 2. Backing up your iPhone to your computer via iTunes
If you don’t trust cloud servers to keep your data safe or just prefer to have a local copy of it as well, you can easily do that through iTunes. If you’re using an Apple laptop or desktop computer, you already have iTunes, but if you have a Windows PC and haven’t installed the software yet, now is the time to do it. Once you have iTunes running with your account logged in, follow these steps:
1. Using the Lightning cable from your charger, connect your iPhone to your computer.
3. Select your iPhone from the upper left corner of the iTunes window (a small iPhone icon usually located right under the “Account” button, shown below).
4. Click on Summary.
You’ve probably noticed that option under “This Computer”. If you check the box, the backup that iTunes creates on your computer will be encrypted with a password of your choice and it will also include any login and Wi-Fi passwords you have saved on your iPhone. Keep in mind that if you forget the master password for the encrypted backup there’s no way to restore it. You can only reset it and create a new encrypted backup, the old one will remain locked. Your iCloud backups are protected by your Apple ID login information and store passwords by default.