We carry everything in our phones these days. And we take those little devices everywhere.
You could say our entire lives are contained in these little gadgets. Your communication, your photos, your contacts, your todos, and more.
What would happen if you lost, broke, or had your phone stolen?
Would it be a big deal and what would you lose? And more importantly, what would you be able to get back again?
Your Phone is Backed Up, Right?
My wife recently had her phone fail. It just sort of died while she was in the middle of running a 10K race. It wouldn’t reboot, recharge, or otherwise come back from it’s “inactive” state. Needless to say, she wasn’t too happy about it.
Yet, while inconvenient… it wasn’t a big deal. We have replacement plans for our phones and nightly we back up our information via iCloud.
A quick trip to the local Apple store confirmed the worst, the phone had “physical” breakage. It wasn’t coming back and need to be replaced.
After paying a small (Apple Care) fee for a replacement phone, I was on my way home with my wife’s new phone. Before she was even awake from her post-race nap, her phone was restoring from it’s cloud back up from the previous night.
Total elapsed time? 45 minutes. Data, photos, and apps all there.
That was pretty good. Granted, I have an Apple store 3 miles from my house. (The relocated it recently, so it could be closer.)
Could you replace your phone and data in 45 minutes?
OK, that really isn’t the point. The important thing is whether or not your phone is regularly backed up. This ensures that you wouldn’t lose anything valuable from your device.
Most people underestimate the value of the information of their devices. And it isn’t until it is gone that they realize they didn’t have a back up. I have heard sad stories of parents losing their children’s baby pictures. Or maybe it is important business information or contacts.
Without back up, you could permanently lose these important valuables.
Other times, it is just about getting back up and going after losing your main communication device. This is definitely one of the areas of productivity where a little planning goes a long way.
Do you know what actions you would need to take to replace your phone? And how long could you “go without” a phone?
Here are some tips to ensure that you don’t lose more than your phone:
(Note: If you regularly read TMN, you know that I am a big Apple user, so these tips are written from the iPhone perspective. The same applies to other devices, you just may need to find similar options to protect your data.)
- Back It Up Regularly – There is no excuse not to back up your phone daily. Apple’s iCloud service will do this each night while you sleep. Yes, you may have to pay a few dollars a month for storage, but that more than outweighs the value of your information.
- Put Your Photos in the Cloud – For many, the most valuable things on their phone are their photos. Memories. Pictures. Even information. Keeping your photos synced to a cloud library not only ensures you won’t lose your pics, but also frees up storage space on your phone.
- Sync your contacts, todos, appointments, and notes – If you were to lose your phone, would you also lose all your work contacts and more? Use synced address books, todo lists, etc. to ensure that you always have access to your work information even without your phone.
- Have Phone Replacement Coverage – The tiny devices we carry with us are also some of the most expensive. With phones costing as much or more than laptop computers these days you definitely should have replacement insurance or AppleCare for your device. Having to deal with a broken phone isn’t fun, having to pay $500-1000 for a replacement is even less fun.
- Be Ready with Plan B – Take a moment, in advance, to think about how you would deal if you didn’t have your phone. Could another device be used in the interim? Could your tablet be a substitute? (Even to make calls.) Where will you go to repair/replace your device?
Protect Your Phone Data Daily
We carry our phones on our person at all times. (Yes, even to bed and to the bathroom… don’t deny it.)
Take a moment to assess the important information contained on your phone. Backing it up should be effortless and daily.
You’ll be able to relax when something bad happens knowing that your valuable information can be quickly and easily restored.
Question: When was the last time your phone was backed up? Mine was today at 4:49AM. You can leave a comment by clicking here.