New Phone? Easy Phone to Phone Transfer Checklist

We all love the feeling of getting a new phone, but nobody wants to start over with contacts, photos, or that game where you finally unlocked a new level. Here’s how to make transferring mobile data easy and painless.

Transferring Between Same OS

If you’re upgrading to a new device that uses the same operating system (i.e. iPhone to iPhone or Android to Android), it’s simple to retrieve your data from the cloud or your associated accounts – as long as you back it up first. 

iPhone data

On your old device, go to Settings > [your name] > iCloud

Tap iCloud Backup, then Back Up Now.

On your new device, you’ll get a prompt to Restore from iCloud backup.

Sign into iCloud, then choose the backup you want to restore.

Android data

On your old device, go to System or Settings > Personal > Backup & reset.

Toggle Back up to Google Drive

To restore data and settings on a new device, sign in to your Google Account.

Transferring Between Different OS

If your new phone uses a different operating system, or you want to import only certain data from your old device, you may need to transfer your data in chunks. Here are directions for some common data transfers to a new smartphone.


One easy way to transfer your contacts to a new device is by syncing your Google account, since it works on almost all platforms.

Android to iPhone

On your Android, go to Settings > Mail, Contacts, Calendars

Find your Google account and tap Account Sync

Alternatively, you can transfer contacts from an Android to an iPhone by downloading the Move to iOS app from the PlayStore on your Android.

iPhone to Android

On your iPhone, go to Settings > Passwords & Accounts

If you’re running iOS 7 or higher, select Google

If you’re running iOS 5 or 6, select Other > Add CardDAV Account

Open the Settings app and go to General > About to find your iOS version.

Set the account, log in and set the Contacts switch to On.

Text Messages

Android to Android

Download the free SMS Backup & Restore app and sync your texts via Bluetooth, email or cloud storage.

iPhone to iPhone

On your old device, go to Settings > Your Account > iCloud

Toggle the Messages switch to On.

Select iCloud Backup and set the switch to On.

Tap Back Up Now.

On your new device, tap Restore from iCloud Backup.

Android to iPhone

On your Android, download the Move to iOS app.

On your iPhone, select Move Data from Android, then Find Your Code.

Enter the code from the iPhone into the old Android device.

Select Messages in the transfer window and hit Next.

iPhone to Android

Back up your iPhone by, first, connecting to your computer.

Choose File > Devices > Back Up.

You can also automatically backup your iPhone by syncing the device with iTunes.

Find the Text Messaging Backup File on your computer.

If you’re using a Mac, it will be inside (user) > Library > Application Support > Mobile Sync > Backup.

If you’re running Windows, the file will be inside users > (username) > AppData > Roaming > Apple Computer > Mobile Sync.

Select the folder with the most recent time stamp and find the file labelled 3d0d7e5fb2ce288813306e4d4636395e047a3d28.

Move this file to your new Android via internal storage or SD card.

On your Android, download the iSMS2droid app from the Play Store.

Open the app and choose Select iPhone SMS Database.

Find the file you transferred to your Android and click All Text Messages to convert them to Android-friendly files.

Download the SMS Backup & Restore app and choose Restore > Restore All Messages.


With Android, go to Settings > App data and toggle Automatic restore to get your apps and data automatically transferred to a new device.

Alternatively, download backup apps like Titanium Backup or Helium to sync all your app settings, stored accounts and so on.

Photo Gallery

Cloud storage makes phone to phone transfer of photos and videos a cinch. Apps like Google Photos, DropBox or Google Drive can sync and back up your memories automatically. Or, if both smartphones have a MicroSD card slot, transfer your photos and videos onto the SD card and restore them to your new device.

Passwords, Bookmarks and History

Transferring your browsing data is very simple, depending on your browser of choice. With Google Chrome, go to Settings > Sync > Data types and either sync everything or only your preferred items.

Ready to update your smartphone? Browse the latest devices at U.S. Cellular®.