When was the last time you backed up all of your photos that you have taken with your phone… or saved on your phone? Would you be upset if you lost them?
We run into this a lot. When we ask people when the last time a backup of any sort on any device was done, most people stare blankly and have no answer. Insert the usual mini-lecture on how important it is to do regular backups of all data that is important to you.
KEEP IN MIND: You can never get your photos back!
I will say it again here – BACKUP YOUR DATA! This means your computer too but this article is focused more on your phone. Ever drop your phone? Ever lose your phone? Ever had a phone stolen? What happens if you drop your phone in water? What about when it decides to die on its own for no discernible reason? Tons of people keep their most precious data—their photos—on the smallest, most fragile device they own, which they carry around with them everywhere, constantly at risk of loss, theft, and breakage. I guarantee you that the majority of the time all data on your phone will be lost. All. Every single precious photo you “store” on your phone can disappear with a simple hiccup in your phone’s functionality.
I’m here to tell you it takes only about 5 minutes to setup automatic backups, it is pretty simple, and you should do it right now.
So how can you automatically back up your photos?
There are tons of apps and programs out there dedicated to uploading, storing, and editing your photos. Take a good look at the features of each in order to decide which would work best for your needs. Here are some of the most popular right now (in alphabetical order, not order of preference):
Amazon Photos: Prime members get unlimited storage for full-resolution photos and 5GB of space for videos. To get your photos off your phone and onto Amazon’s service, you’ll need the Amazon Photos app for Android and iOS. It will prompt you to auto-upload your photos on first install, but just in case, you can enable the feature by tapping More in the bottom-right, then going to Settings > Auto-Save and adjusting your preferences there.
Dropbox: Dropbox’s free account offers 2 GB of space for whatever you desire to upload. To turn on automatic uploading, open the Dropbox app for Android or iOS, tap the menu, and scroll down to Settings. Tap Camera Uploads to turn the feature on and adjust your settings
Flickr: Flickr offers storage of up to 1,000 uncompressed photos for free, however automatic uploading from your phone requires a Flickr Pro account at $6/month. To turn on automatic upload, open the Flickr app for Android or iOS and tap the profile button in the toolbar along the top. Drag the screen down and tap the three-dots menu that appears in the upper right-hand corner. Select Auto-Uploadr to enable the feature.
Google Photos: All users get 15 GB of free storage, though it’s shared across all Google services. You can also upgrade to a subscription to Google One starting at $1.99/month for 100 GB. To set up Google Photos’ automatic uploading, download the Google Photos app for Android or iPhone, log in, then tap your profile photo in the upper right-hand corner. Tap ‘Turn on Backup’ and adjust your backup settings as you see fit. Your photos should regularly back up to the cloud for safekeeping, and you can download them one by one or in batches if you ever want to print them out.
iCloud: If you are using an iPhone, you probably have iCloud Photos turned on by default, which ensures your photos are backed up to Apple’s storage service. iCloud offers 5 GB of space for free, and that space is shared with your iPhone backups and other data. If you need more space, iCloud storage starts at $0.99/month for 50 GB. To ensure your phone is backing up your photos to your iCloud, open the Settings app on your iPhone, scroll down to Photos, and flip the iCloud Photos switch on. You can then choose to remove photos from your iPhone as space is needed on your device, which can come in handy.
Once you have selected a service, downloaded the app to your phone, and configured it for automatic backups – you are done! You can rest easy knowing your photos aren’t going anywhere—even if you accidentally drop your phone in the river. Just make sure that if you move the photos to your computer (and don’t keep them in the cloud) that you do regular backups of your computer data too.
Need a hand? Contact TeCHS!