How to Backup Android Contacts and Text Messages (SMS / MMS)

In today’s high tech world, the Smart phones have become a bigger and integral part of our life than ever before. They have replaced several essential attributes and mediums that we used to rely upon in early decades. Most of our important and personal data like contacts and text messages are stored on our mobiles. But there is always a risk of losing this data while updating your device with Custom ROM or flashing a firmware. In this article we’ll guide you in backing up all your Android contacts and text messages so as to keep them safe and secure.

Backing up Contacts

If your Android phone crashes down or in case you want to update it or buy a new one, it’s always better to take a backup copy of all your contacts before doing so. It’s always risky and even your device might lose all the data including those long lists of contacts which will be tedious and annoying to re-enter. But we are in an age of smart phones where you can make this time consuming process much easier than it looks. The managing and organizing Android contacts is quite easy and provides various techniques to do so. Some of them are listed below.

Method 1

For backing up contacts through Android phone itself, follow the steps given:

Step 1: Open the contact list from your Android device.

Step 2: Then press the menu button, after which you’ll see some menu options like my profile, accounts, get friends, display options, speed-dial and more popping out.

Step 3: Select the more option from them.

Step 4: Then click on the import/export option appearing from list of options to proceed.

Manage Contactd Export

Step 5: This will bring up a list of available importing and exporting options.

You can select your choice to backup contacts, whether to import/export them to SD card or SIM card. On your SD card, they will be saved in a .vcf format which can be later copied to PC for more safety. You can export all the contacts back using the same procedure.

Manage Contacts Exporting

That’s all; this was the basic method to backup all your contacts within your Android device on SD/SIM card.

Now let’s move on to second method where you can sync all your contacts with Gmail.

Method 2

For Syncing to Gmail, it’s obvious that you’ll need a Gmail account. Feel free to use your personal Gmail account or make a new one just for your backups. Once created, just log into it through your PC or laptop and search for a contact icon. You’ll find it somewhere on the left hand side of the screen. Then you’ll be directed towards the contact management area.

Gmail Contacts Click

There click on the ‘+’ signed icon. After that you will be asked to create a new contact. Enter all the detailed information regarding all your contact members and click on save link. Now, repeat this procedure for each and every contact until they are saved.

Method 3

Both the methods mentioned above either require just your Android device or just a Gmail account. But for this method you’ll need both, your Android phone as well as a Gmail account. As compared to the method 3, this is quite less tedious and much easy. It is recommended you to create a Gmail account. You can use your personal Gmail account or can even create a new just for taking backups. Once created, follow the steps below:

Step 1: Select the contacts icon from the application window of your Android phone.

Step 2: Then press the menu button, after which you’ll see some menu options like my profile, accounts, get friends, display options, speed-dial and more popping out.

Step 3: Click on the accounts and sync settings option from them.

Step 4: Add your Gmail account there by entering your username and password.

Step 5: Turn on the sync contacts option available there.

By doing so, your Android phone will be automatically synced with your Gmail account and all your contacts will be transferred from your device. Later on you can retrieve them on any Smartphone, it’s not necessary to be Android only.

Backing up Messages

Other than making calls, SMS is the next vital task the Smartphones are used for now days. Some of them have a monetary importance in our life. But it makes us so frustrating when they are lost due to some issues. This may happen during software update, device crash or due to some malicious application. Hence you must always make a backup copy of all your SMS. Here are some apps that will help you to make proper backup/restore of your messages.

SMS Backup & Restore:

It is a very simple app that helps you backup your messages and then in time of need restore them back. It makes backup in XML format which can be viewed on any Android device. This XML can be converted into other formats and can also be viewed on computer. On newer devices the default backup will be done on internal storage and not external. So whenever you factory reset your phone dont forget to save a copy of backup on your PC. More of its features are given below.

how to backup android contacts and text messages sms mms0

Features:

  • Can automatically backup on the scheduled time.
  • Backup can be viewed on any Android device irrespective of the Android version.
  • Included option to choose a particular chats to backup.
  • Can View/Restore/Delete all messages or only selected ones.
  • Can Email a backup file.
  • With Add-On you can directly email or upload a backup file to Dropbox and Google Drive.

 Download SMS Backup & Restore



SMS Backup+:

This app also helps to backup your messages in a different but quit efficient manner. It allows you to backup all your text messages either manually or automatically to your Gmail account. Also your calendar entries can be backed up. You must note that this app wont work reliably if its installed on your SD card. If youre backing up to your Gmail address, its obvious youll need a Gmail account first. Feel free to use your personal Gmail account or make a new one just for your backups. Then configure your Gmail for IMAP. To do so, follow the steps given.

how to backup android contacts and text messages sms mms1

Step 1: Log in to your Gmail account and go to Settings.

Step 2: In Settings, head on to the Forwarding and POP/IMAP tab. Scroll down until you see IMAP Access section.

Step 3: Within IMAP Access, change the Disable IMAP to Enable IMAP. Thats it.

how to backup android contacts and text messages sms mms2

Now launch SMS Backup+ app on your device and enter the Gmail username and password in the settings section. Once they are verified, you can manually/automatically make a backup copy to your Gmail account. Although it consumes your device battery and data network too, but still its quite worthy.

 Download SMS Backup+
GO SMS Pro:

This is really a cool messaging app that comes with tons of breath taking features. It is much better as compared to your stock messaging app. It can secure your messages with password/pattern lock, can make scheduled messages and the most importantly it can backup/restore all your text messages in a safe and secure manner.

Visit here for more about GO SMS Pro.

Txtract MMS & SMS Backup

This app is amongst the top 10 apps for taking backup of SMS and MMS. As its name suggest, it extracts your phones SMS and MMS messages to certain external storage like your phones micro SDcard. Later on you can copy them to your PC for more safety. After taking backup, you can easily delete certain threads or clear the whole messaging storage to make your Messaging app run faster. The SMS backup is created in .html, .xml or .csv format. The backup files will be stored under the directory /sdcard/download/txtract/. With Txtract, you can not only backup your messages to your memory card but can also send them to your email.

Txtract Backup

Txtract has two versions viz. Lite and Full. In lite version, Txtract extracts the messages only in .html format and doesn’t support the .xml and .csv extensions. Also you can’t do thread selection here.

The main points to remember before extracting your messages are:

  1. Make sure that your SD card is not mounted.
  2. Make sure that USB cable is detached and not connected.
 Download Txtract MMS & SMS Backup

After following all the above methods, you don’t need to worry about your contacts and messages in case of any loss of data. If you face any kind of difficulty then do let us know in the comments section below. All your suggestions or issues will be pleasingly accepted and an exact solution will be given.

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Abhijeet Bharekar

Residing in Pune (India), Abhijeet is a Tech lover and enthusiast about all-things Android. He is a hardcore PC Gamer and likes to play Football as well. Follow him on Google+.
Comments (3)
  1. Gary Taylor December 23, 2013
  2. Riki Juliansyah November 23, 2013

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