When buying a new iPhone, you may have a question, "How do I transfer everything from my old phone to my new phone?"
Basically, you can use one of many methods, such as backup from iCloud, Quick Start, using Mac, AirDrop, or apps like AnyTrans.
Some of these methods, especially wireless ones, take quite a bit of time. Those that require a connection usually help you transfer files faster. Below, we'll describe in detail 5 ways to move files from one iPhone to another, as well as provide instructions for the easiest way to transfer files in a few clicks.
Reasons to transfer data to new iPhone
The main reason why you might want to transfer information from one iPhone to another is to keep all your files and settings on the new device. In other words, to make using your new iPhone as convenient and familiar as your old one.
If all your data is stored in the cloud (for example, iCloud or Google Drive), you just need to turn on synchronization. This way, you can transfer documents, contacts, photos, videos, etc. However, this method is not suitable for apps and if all data is stored directly on the phone.
For any of these cases, we have an instruction. Just use one of the methods described below.
The easiest way to transfer everything from my old iPhone to a new iPhone
The easiest way to transfer data is to use the AnyTrans backup manager. All your files will quickly fly directly from one iPhone to another.
Here's how to transfer everything from one iPhone to another with AnyTrans:
- Open AnyTrans on your Mac.
- Connect both iPhones via USB
- Click on Phone Switcher in the left sidebar. The icon looks like two devices with an arrow between them
- Click Migrate now on the iPhone you want to transfer data from
- Make sure that the source for transferring is correct by clicking on the line with the name of the device
- Then choose the categories of files you want to transfer
- Finally, enjoy how the files fly from one iPhone to another.
Transfer data from iPhone to iPhone using iCloud
This method is for cloud users. By default, your phone makes a daily backup, but if you're going to transfer data to a new iPhone, you'll need to manually back it up first. The path is as follows: Settings > iCloud > Backup > Back Up Now.
You may have to wait a bit if the volume of content is large. When the backup is finished, you can start restoring the information.
Here's how to transfer data from one iPhone to another using iCloud:
- Turn on your new iPhone and go through the setup procedure using the on-screen prompts
- When you reach the Setup iPhone or Apps & Data step, tap on Restore from iCloud Backup
- Sign in with the same Apple ID as the device you're transferring files from
- Agree to the terms and conditions
- Choose the most recent backup from the list that appears on the screen
- Wait for the backup to complete and restart your phone.
Note that iCloud does not transfer 100% of the information from your phone. For example, it doesn't save music or apps. To transfer them, it's better to use the AnyTrans app mentioned above.
Don't forget to clean up your old iPhone if you are not going to use it anymore. Go to Settings > General > Reset > Tap Erase all content and settings.
How to transfer data from iPhone to iPhone using Quick Start
Transferring data with Quick Start requires a short preparation. First, update both phones to the latest version of iOS. If the versions are different, the migration process may fail. By the way, if both phones are running iOS 12.4 or later, you'll be able to transfer absolutely all your data.
Second, back up your old iPhone. To do this, go to Settings > iCloud > Backup > Back Up Now. Third, turn on Bluetooth to create the connection needed to transfer data.
Here is an instruction on how to transfer data from iPhone to iPhone using Quick Start:
- Put the phones close to each other
- Turn on your new phone and go through the setup steps until you see Quick Start
- Click Continue when the Set Up New iPhone window appears on your phone
- An animated image will appear on the new iPhone, and the window with a scanner will appear on the old iPhone. Use them to authorize yourself
- Enter the password from your old iPhone on the new one (the corresponding window will appear after authorization)
- Click on Transfer from iPhone on the new phone. The process will start.
If you accidentally skipped the Quick Start step or if the data transfer is interrupted for unknown reasons, try repeating the procedure. To do this, you will have to erase the contents of the new iPhone: Settings > General > Transfer or Reset iPhone > Erase All Content and Settings. The phone will restart, and you will be able to try to transfer iPhone to iPhone again.
Free up space on your iPhone after transferring
Before transferring files, make sure you really need all of them. You may have the same or almost the same photos or videos on your phone. Or maybe you accidentally duplicated a document or folder. You don't want to clutter up the space on your new iPhone with unnecessary files, do you?
There is a way to detect all similar files, and it's the Gemini app. It scans your phone and detects identical files that can be deleted without affecting the content. The app will show similar files in a convenient preview window, and you can check them before deciding whether to delete them.
Follow these steps to get rid of unwanted files on your iPhone:
- Open Gemini on your iPhone
- Choose the category you want to delete photos from. Gemini will find duplicates, screenshots, blurred photos, videos, and more
- Tap Delete to confirm your decision.
Gemini also has a Mac app that digs much deeper into the folders on your Mac to find duplicate files, folders, pictures, and other items that may need to be deleted. You can let Gemini scan your entire system or limit the scan to the photo or music folders on your Mac.
When the scan is completed, you can either do the smart cleanup of your files or review duplicates and delete them manually.
How to transfer data from iPhone to iPhone using Mac
This method requires you to create a copy of your old iPhone on your Mac and then migrate it to your new iPhone.
Here are the step-by-step instructions on how to transfer iPhone to iPhone through Mac:
- Connect your old iPhone to your Mac with a cable
- Open the Finder in the lower left corner of the screen
- Choose your iPhone on the left side of the window that appears
- Click Back up all of the data on your iPhone to your Mac and then Back up now
- Wait for the process to complete and disconnect your phone from your Mac
- Turn on your new iPhone and follow the steps until you reach the Apps & Data screen. Click on Restore from Mac or PC
Connect your new iPhone to your Mac, open Finder, select Restore Backup, and wait for the process to complete.
How to transfer data from iPhone to iPhone without Wi-Fi
Previous data transfer options require either a network or a laptop connection. AirDrop allows you to transfer data autonomously.
Here's how to transfer data to new iPhone using AirDrop:
- Turn on Wi-Fi and Bluetooth
- Press and hold on the wireless control box
- Click on AirDrop and Choose Contacts Only or Everyone
- Choose the file (photo, contact, document) you want to share and tap AirDrop
- On your new iPhone, tap Accept to receive a file.
This method is convenient and fast, but it is only suitable for cases when you need to send a few files. If you send more files, use AnyTrans we mentioned earlier.
Which method to choose when you transfer data to new iPhone?
So, there are 5 main methods to transfer data from iPhone to iPhone: backup from iCloud, Quick Start, using Mac, AirDrop, or with the help of the AnyTrans app.
Apple's original methods of data transfer are quite effective, but some are imperfect. For example, AirDrop is convenient for moving only a few files, and restoring from an iCloud backup does not allow you to transfer music or apps.
The fastest and easiest method to migrate all data is to use the app called AnyTrans. You simply connect both phones to your Mac and send data directly from one device to the other.
Other apps mentioned above will make it easier to prepare for the migration. Gemini can help you clean up duplicate files on your phone. CloudMounter allows you to have constant access to the clouds you use on your iPhone from your Mac.
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Do you put a SIM card in the new iPhone before transferring data?
It doesn't matter. The SIM card doesn't store data from your iPhone, so you can put it in before or after you transfer data to new iPhone.
How long does it take to transfer data from one iPhone to another?
It depends on the amount of data you are going to transfer and the transfer method. It is generally advised to expect the process to take 45 minutes to an hour.
Does Quick Start transfer everything?
If both phones involved in the data transfer have iOS 12.4 or higher, you will be able to transfer all data, including Wi-Fi settings, Apple ID, Apple Pay, etc.
If your iOS version is older than 12.4, you won't be able to transfer all your data. You'll need to make a backup on your old phone and then restore it to your new one.