You’ve finally made the leap and upgraded to a new smartphone, or you’re ready to switch to one with even more features. Congratulations! But before you move on from your old device, there are a few important steps you should take to clear any of your important information off of it. This will protect your personal data, and make sure you don’t inadvertently leave anything behind that you may wish to transfer to your new one.
Before retiring your current phone, take a few minutes to do the following:
Use cloud storage (either iCloud or Google drive) to back up your contacts, photos, and any other important documents you may have in your phone’s files. If you’re moving on to the same type of device, make sure you know your Google Account email and password, or Apple ID. You’ll need these to recover your saved data and transfer it to your new phone.
To back up your iPhone contacts, tap Settings, then go to iCloud. Make sure Contacts is selected, then follow the prompts to merge them. To back up your Android phone using Google, go to Google Drive, then tap Settings. Go to System, then Advanced, then Backup, and make sure Back Up to Google Drive is enabled.
Once you’ve backed up your data, you can clear out your old phone by doing a factory reset. This will return the phone to the state it was in before you uploaded any personal information or customized any of its settings.
To do a factory reset for an iPhone, choose Settings, go to General, then Reset, and tap Erase All Content and Settings. Confirm your AppleID to complete the process. The reset process will vary for Android models, but on most, open Settings, look for Reset options, and select Erase All Data, or Factory Reset. You may need to confirm your PIN to complete the reset.
By following these few simple steps, you’ll clean up files, protect data, and secure your personal information all while making your transition to a new smartphone easier. In addition, if your previous device is relatively new, it still packs plenty of potential. By doing a factory reset, you’ve put it in a great state to be given to a friend who could still use it, or for donating it to an organization that can find new life for it.