You’ve decided: your relationship with Apple is over. You want to give Android a spin, and the safest option seems to be a Samsung phone. They’re the biggest manufacturer, after all, and they have their own range of watches so you can replace your Apple Watch quickly and simply.
But how do you transfer data from iPhone to Samsung? Well, you don’t need to do anything. You could just start things afresh – but realistically you’ll have a bunch of things you want to transfer over to make your new best friend feel familiar. Here’s how to make that transition as smooth as possible.
How to transfer data from iPhone to Samsung
First things first, Android requires a Google account to get the most out of it, and while you can do basic things without one, you won’t even be able to download apps from the Google Play Store. If you have a Gmail address, use Google Docs or Google Calendar, you already have one, but if you don’t, go ahead and register one here.
Once that’s done, Samsung has made it ridiculously easy to transfer your content from your old iPhone to your new shiny device, be it the Samsung Galaxy S8 or the Note 8. Once logged in with your Gmail account, head straight to the Google Play store and download the Samsung Smart Switch Mobile app. Once installed, open the app and you’ll see two transfer options on your screen: USB cable or Wi-Fi.
How to transer data from iPhone to Samsung option one: transfer via USB
If you’ve bought the Samsung Galaxy S7, S8 or Note 9, you’ll find a dinky USB adapter in the box that plugs into the charging port of your new handset port. Into that, you can plug your old reliable lightning cable, clipping the other end into the iPhone as if you’re charging it.
Once both ends are attached, you’ll see a message pop up on the iPhone, asking if you want to trust the device that’s trying to access its precious data. Of course you want it to, so tap “trust.” Then press “next” on the Samsung app to continue. It will then search for data to transfer.
Once it’s catalogued the contents of your iPhone, you’ll see a bunch of things to copy over to your new device, and it’s up to you to select what you really want to keep. Contacts, text message history, call log, music, photos and Wi-Fi settings are all up for grabs. Make your picks and tap “transfer.”
The phone will give you an estimated time it’ll take, and it might be a long wait depending on how much you want to bring with you. Once it’s done, you’ll have more options: it’ll even suggest substitute apps it finds so you won’t feel too out of place.
That’s it. Your Samsung phone is ready to use, and it’s time to get to know Android.
How to transfer data from iPhone to Samsung option two: transfer over Wi-Fi
How to transfer data from iPhone to Samsung option three: Do it manually
When I was moving from a HTC handset to the Samsung Galaxy S7, I found the transfer process incredibly flakey. So flakey that I eventually gave up and did it myself. Here are some pointers.
- Mail, Contacts and Calendar. If you already use Gmail for your iPhone, you may be in luck, as all three of these can be connected with Google. If they are, then your new Samsung phone should begin syncing all three right away with no fuss. If you’re hell bent on keeping iCloud, then two SmoothSync apps will let you sync those to Android: Cloud Contacts and Cloud Calendar. It won’t be as neat and tidy as using Android’s options, but will keep things in sync if you’re not completely ready to give up on Apple’s system on your Mac, say.
- Messages. First of all, if you use WhatsApp for everything, you can actually back up all your messages from within the app – handily to Google Drive, which you’ll now have access to with your new shiny Gmail account. Backup using your iPhone Whatsapp, and then when you log in on Android it should just download and you’ll be back where you started.
- SMS messages are a bit trickier. There are lots of apps out there and I can personally vouch for SMS Backup and Restore, but I’ve only used it for Android to Android transfers. One app that does promise iPhone support is iSMS2droid, and with a 4.5/5 score it looks like it’s working for most people, so give that a go.
- Photos. You could use any number of cloud storage options here – Google Drive is built right into the iPhone under Settings > Backup, but you could use Dropbox if that’s your poison. For my money though, it’s best to fully embrace Google and download Google Photos to your iPhone. Not only is it the best photo app on Android, using clever artificial intelligence to let you search for pictures just by typing what’s in them, but it automatically uploads to your Google storage, ready for you to download on your new phone as and when required.
But if you’re already tied into iCloud, then you have a more tedious task ahead of you: manually downloading them on a PC or Mac from iCloud.com, and then transferring them manually over to your new phone. Still, at least you can use a microSD card now, eh?
- Music. Really? Do people still need to back up their tracks in 2018? There are Android versions of Spotify, Amazon Music Unlimited, Google Play Music (of course) and even Apple Music. Surely that’s enough?
Fine, if you really need to back up your iTunes library, then your best bet is logging into Google Play Music with your Google account. This will let you upload 50,000 songs to the cloud and stream them for free to your phone.