Backing up your iPhone is crucial, but iTunes iClouds can be cumbersome and slow and does not allow you to make partial backups. We explore an alternative approach
Do I want to know the first three pieces of advice we give to new iPhone owners? Back up, back up, back up
Your iPhone is full of important and irreplaceable data, precious photos and data messages, contacts, emails, and documents; not to mention dozens of laborious download applications and games and hundreds of songs. And assuming you do not copy, you could lose everything if your phone is stolen or broken (which is sadly common), or by a bug during an iOS regular Apple bricked updates.
Much better to save the contents of your iPhone (and the iPad, for that matter) in a secure-backup device in the cloud or on a Mac or PC, so you can easily restore the batch if something goes wrong. This also makes it easier to migrate to a new device without having to configure everything from scratch.
However, this sensible and apparently simple thing is sometimes easier said than done. Many iPhone owners go into bad habits, rarely backing up or not, and it’s worth wondering why this should be the case.
The downsides of iTunes and iCloud
Two options for Apple backup are iTunes and iCloud, another for local backups and the other for the cloud. Both have sides that can put people back up as often as they should.
iTunes allows you to back up the contents of an iPhone to a desktop computer. It is free to use, but not always easy to use; The software has been criticized for being bloated over the years and many iPhone owners find it more uncomfortable. Backup in this way takes up space on your computer, and if you use a low storage laptop this is not a small consideration. Finally, you can only copy all the contents of an iPhone or none can’t make partial backups.
iCloud, as its name suggests, is cloud-based: the backup is stored on Apple servers and can be accessed from anywhere with a web connection, which is generally more convenient than backing up in iTunes. But keep in mind that Apple servers can be violated and will have been violated in the past, there is always the small chance of a hacker accessing your personal data and photos.