Google automatically backs up some of your phone's data, like SMS messages (Nexus/Pixel only) and call history, to the cloud. That way, if you need to wipe your device or it gets lost/stolen, you're not completely out of luck. Android Pie includes changes to how these backups are stored, so not even Google can read your data. Read More
Much of the world has moved on from SMS, but it's still one of the most popular methods of sending messages in the US. It's an unfortunate requirement here for many, and it probably will be until RCS gets off the ground. And if you're the data-hoarding type, then you might want to keep those SMS messages around for later reference—either in cold storage or an easily accessed format. But even bringing them with you from device to device isn't actually that hard, and we're glad to walk you through the different ways to do it. Read More
Anyone who's set up a Samsung phone has probably seen all the popups for Samsung Cloud backups. It's actually a rather robust system backup tool that can save system settings and app data, but Samsung is dropping a big part of that service. Starting next month, third-party apps will no longer be supported on Samsung Cloud. Read More
Backing up and restoring data is something that Android hasn't always handled so well, but it's got a lot better in recent versions. Since Marshmallow, automatic app data backups have made switching between phones a whole lot easier, bringing all your apps and settings with you. This means that you can set up a new device and have it look identical to your old one, without having to go through the agony setting everything up again.
What hasn't been possible, though, is restoring data to a device after the initial setup is complete. That appears to have changed with the Android 8.1 Oreo developer preview, and also in 8.0 on the new Pixels, which share a bunch of features with the 8.1 build you'll get on OG Pixels and Nexuses. Read More
Google Photos is probably one of the most renowned products the company has ever made. But, right now some people are having a bit of trouble with it. For many, images uploaded to the service since October 17th aren't appearing on the Google Photos website, although the images are being backed up and can be accessed via Google Drive. Read More
Version 3.4 of Google Photos started rolling out earlier today, and like so many other recent app updates, you're probably not going to see much in the way of changes. This is a pretty common theme around this time of year as Google prepares to launch new hardware and services. But investigating the app updates themselves can still turn up clues about future enhancements. In this release, there are signs that users will be able to mark photos as "favorites" and quickly pull up a list for easy browsing. There's also going to be a new notification when you're on cellular networks to allow one-time passes for the backup system to use some of that data and get your photos and videos into the cloud ASAP. Read More
Some users have been experiencing issues with backup on Google's Pixel devices, most notably backups of SMS, call history, and apps, although other accounts of all backup types failing have also been reported. The current cause isn't known, but reports of the problem on Google's product forums stretch back to just after the launch of the device, and for many the matter remains unresolved. Read More