Back Up Your Mobile Device too

What kind of a small business consulting firm would we be if we didn’t instill a deep commitment in our customers to back up their data?

How many people tell you to back up your mobile device? Not many. We recently ran into this with a consultant here in our office. Her 2 month old iPhone 4 hatched the dreaded NO SIM issue. Like a good customer she logged on to Apple.com and made an appointment with the Genius Bar. Much to her surprise they had an open slot in 30 minutes. She packed up her purse and headed out…forgetting to back-up her phone. She had not synced for a few weeks. Therefore she spent a good part of her Genius Bar visit uploading her photos via the SmugMug app.

iPhone

If you have an iPhone you automatically create a back up every time you sync, however some other phones do not. Some sync products like MicroSoft Exchange and Apple’s MobileMe will help keep your calendar and contacts items in check. What about your other data?

Here are a few tips to help you out. None of this will apply to iPhone users since your phone is backed up every time you sync (which you should be doing once a week anyway). It’s for you that are new to the smartphone and rocking the latest Blackberry or Android device.

Android

One of the nice things about the Android platform is the fact that all of your important data like contacts and emails are stored on the internet and it is all sync’d automatically. And when the latest version called Froyo is released, even your application data will be backed up to your Google account.

Still, it’s not complete. Like most smartphone owners, you will end up with photos or video on your camera. There are SMS messages too that you might want to keep as well.

The best way to back up your photos on your Android is by using iPhoto on the Mac or Picasa on Windows. Connect your phone, import your photos (and video) just like your camera. Done and done.

You can also download Lookout. It will provide anti-virus, backup and device finding functionality. All for free! Available in the market, from the site or at Appbrain.com.

Blackberry

If you are a Blackberry user, then you should already be using the Blackberry Desktop Manager. If you aren’t, now would be a good time to start. Besides providing a complete backup of the data on your phone, it also provides a conduit to sync your phone contacts to Microsoft Outlook (or your favorite email program).

You can also install the Google app called Google Sync on your phone from m.google.com. It will sync your contacts and calendar to your Google account for safe keeping.

For photos, you can import those easily into iPhoto or Picasa, just like you do for your camera.

Finally, for both Android and Blackberry phones, it’s a good idea to completely copy everything from the phone that you can. When you connect your device to your PC or Mac, it should mount as a drive. Open that drive and copy everything there to a local folder under your user directory on your PC. Bonus, if you have regular backups on your PC, that’s 2 more copies of your phone data that you have.

Remember, you can’t get it back if you don’t back it up!

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