How to move text messages to a new phone

How to move text messages to a new phone

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How to move text messages to a new Android phone Open Settings on your old phone > Check that you are using the correct Google account > Tap Google > Press on Backup > Make sure backup is enabled > Scroll down and check SMS and MMS messages is listed > Press Backup now. Then turn on your new phone > Sign in with the same Google account you used to create the backup > Select Restore when asked if you want to restore the data associated with your account.

For instructions on transferring text messages to other phone models, see below.


SKIP TO KEY SECTIONS

How to Move Text Messages to a New Android Phone

A Google Pixel 7Ppro next to a Samsung Galaxy S22 Plus showing its home screens.  Both rest on a concrete block outdoors.

Ryan Haines / Android Authority

You can use your Android phone and Google Account to back up and restore your text messages. First, back up your messages on the old phone:

  1. To open Settings app on your Android phone.
  2. Double check that you are backing up to your preferred Google account at the top of the screen.
  3. Press Google > Backup.
  4. Make sure backup is enabled.
  5. Scroll down and make sure SMS and MMS messages is listed.
  6. Press Backup now to manually back up your messages.

After you’ve backed up your messages, move to your new phone and do the following to download them all:

  1. Turn on the new phone and sign in with the same Google account you used to create the backup.
  2. Select during the setup process Restore when the phone asks if you want to restore the data associated with your account.
  3. After the setup process is complete, you should see your messages in the Messages app.
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How to Move Text Messages to a New iPhone

The back of an iPhone 12, iPhone 13 and iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 placed on a black mat seen from above.

Dhruv Bhutani / Android Authority

Like an Android phone, you can use your iCloud account on an iPhone to back up and restore your messages. First, do the following on your old iPhone:

  1. Make sure you have iOS 11.4 or later installed.
  2. Plug in your iPhone and connect it to Wi-Fi.
  3. Open Settings > Apple ID > iCloud.
  4. Turn on Messages to have them saved to your iCloud account.
  5. This may take a while, so keep your phone plugged in and connected to Wi-Fi until the process is complete.

After you’ve backed up your messages, you can transfer them to your new iPhone by doing the following:

  1. Turn on your new iPhone.
  2. Go through the setup steps.
  3. Press when prompted Restore from iCloud Backup to recover your messages.
  4. The transfer process may take a while, but once it’s done, you should see your messages in the Messages app.

If the steps above don’t work, try using a Mac to back up and restore your messages. Here’s what to do:

  1. Open iTunes on your Mac.
  2. Click on the iPhone icon.
  3. Under Backups, select This computer. This will save a full backup of your iPhone to your Mac.
  4. Once the backup is complete, you can download it to your new iPhone during the setup process.

How to move text messages from iPhone to Android

A Samsung Galaxy S22 Plus next to an Apple iPhone 13 showing their home screens.  Both rest on a blue, patterned carpet.

Eric Zeman / Android Authority

You can transfer messages from an iPhone to an Android phone, but the process will be more involved. Here’s what to do:

  1. Turn on your new Android phone and follow the setup process.
  2. When prompted to “Copy apps and data”, tap Next.
  3. Turn on and unlock your iPhone, then tap Next on the “Use the old phone” screen.
  4. You need the USB-C to USB-A adapter that came with the phone. Connect the USB-C end to your phone, then connect the other end to your iPhone using a USB-to-Lightning dongle.
  5. Sign in with your Google Account when prompted on your Android phone, then tap Next.
  6. You will be asked what you want to copy. Make sure you choose Messages along with anything else you want to copy. Then press on Copy.
  7. Press Continue.
  8. Continue through the rest of the configuration process.
  9. Your Android phone will remind you to disable iMessage on iPhone. Make sure you do this so you don’t miss any future messages.
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The process is a bit more streamlined if you have a Samsung Galaxy phone. As a bonus, you can do it anytime, not just when you’re setting up your new Android phone. Here’s what to do:

  1. Download the Samsung Smart Switch app on your Samsung device.
  2. Open the app and then select Receive data.
  3. Select iPhone/iPad as a source. Make sure your iPhone is on and unlocked
  4. Plug the USB-C end of a USB-C to USB-A cable into your Samsung device and the other end into a USB-to-Lightning dongle connected to your iPhone.
  5. The Smart Switch app will automatically search your iPhone. Select Messages along with other things you want to transfer.
  6. Press Transfer.
  7. The transfer process may take some time, but you will see a progress indicator on your Samsung device. Ensure that Keep the screen on option is enabled, so nothing is interrupted.
  8. When the transfer is complete, press Next.
  9. Your Samsung phone will remind you to disable iMessage on iPhone. Make sure you do this so you don’t miss any future messages.

How to move text messages from Android to iPhone

A Google Pixel 7 next to an Apple iPhone 14 in a wooden table showing the two phones' lock screens.

Ryan Haines / Android Authority

Apple offers an easy way to move messages from Android to iPhone. Here’s what to do:

  1. Install Move to iOS on your Android phone.
  2. Turn on your new iPhone and start the setup process. Make sure to connect to a Wi-Fi network.
  3. When the prompt regarding Apps and data appears, select Move data from Android.
  4. Make a note of the security code displayed on your iPhone.
  5. Open Move to iOS on your Android device and enter the security code when prompted.
  6. In the Move to iOS app, select the types of data you want to transfer. Make sure you select Messages.
  7. Complete the setup process on your iPhone.
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Read more: Why iMessage is such a big deal

Common questions

It depends on. If you had already enabled message backup, you should be able to get them back. But if not, it’s probably too late. Messages are stored locally on a phone unless you have backup enabled, which means that if you get rid of the device, the messages will be gone too.

Yes, but the exact amount depends on how many there are, how long they are, and whether they contain images and other forms of content in addition to text.

Yes, you can choose to back up your messages only for the transfer process and then revoke the relevant permissions in settings once everything is complete.

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