If you've finally buckled down and purchased a smartphone -- or you're already fairly smartphone-dependent -- make sure you know how to back up your data. Backing up your phone's data will preserve valuable information including your contacts list, photos, and even text messages in the event the phone crashes or gets damaged in an accident. When you have your data backed up, you can just transfer the data to a new mobile device or start over when the existing phone gets repaired.
Whether you own an iPhone, a BlackBerry, or an Android phone, here's what you need to do to back up your smartphone data:
Backing Up iPhone Data
One of the great things about the iPhone is it performs backups regularly on a schedule. It will save your app settings, contacts, text messages, and photos; all you have to do is restore your data by plugging in your smartphone and executing an alt-click on the iPhone icon in iTunes. Select "Restore from Backup" from the menu and everything will be restored.
Keep in mind that this is different from the "Restore" function which will restore your phone to factory settings. For detailed information on backing up your iPhone, head to Apple's support page on the subject.
Backing Up Android Phone Data
It's fairly easy to back up your contacts to your Google Account with an Android phone -- I have a Motorola Droid and found it easy to just import and export information to my Google Account -- but you can also take advantage of some free backup apps available from the Android Marketplace.
One of the most highly-rated free backup tools is Titanium Backup for Android. This app allows you to backup and restore all of your apps seamlessly. If your phone ends up crashing because of a bad update or you have problems with your smartphone freezing, this type of app can help to restore everything and will protect critical data.
Backing Up BlackBerry Data
BlackBerry users can use apps like BlackBerry Desktop which syncs all the data stored on your phone to your Mac or PC. You can also link your account to a tablet computer and sync most items including email accounts, messages, online searches, and calendars. You just need to download the software to your desktop computer then connect your device to your computer with a USB cable.
Under the "Backup" section of your software program, you can "Back up all device application data" or select "Custom" to pick and choose the type of data you want to backup. There is a useful "How To" tutorial to help you navigate through the different screens of the BlackBerry Desktop software program if you want to backup select files or are looking for something specific.