Restoring from a previous iCloud backup
Ask iLounge offers readers the opportunity to get answers to their iPod-, iPhone-, iPad-, iTunes-, or Apple TV-related questions from a member of the iLounge editorial team. We'll answer several questions here each week, and of course, you can always get help with more immediate concerns from the iLounge Discussion Forums. Submit your questions for consideration using our Ask iLounge Submit Form. We reserve the right to edit questions for grammar, spelling, and length.
Q: How do I get my iCloud backup from an old phone onto a new phone after I’ve started using the new phone? I still see my old phone storage stuff in manage storage, but I can’t see any option to restore it.
A: The only way to restore an iCloud backup onto a iPhone or other iOS device that you’ve already setup as a new device is to erase your device and start over. An option to Erase All Content and Settings can be found in the Settings under General, Reset.
Choosing this option will prompt you to enter your iOS passcode if one is set, and will then prompt you to confirm that this is actually what you want to do. Your device will then go through a relatively quick erase process and then restart, displaying the iOS Setup Assistant in the same way as for a brand new device. During this process, you will be given the option to setup as a new iPhone or restore from an iCloud or iTunes backup.
Choosing to restore from an iCloud backup will prompt you for your Apple ID and then display a list of your iCloud backups to restore from.
For more detailed information on this process, see our Guide to Transferring your Content to a new iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch.
Note that there is no simple way to merge the information from two separate backups, so if you’ve already started using your iPhone as a new device and accumulated new data on it that you want to preserve, you’re basically left with the choice between completely restoring your old backup—losing any new information in the process—or simply discarding it in favour of the new backup.
There are third-party utilities such as iBackupBot and MobileSyncBrowser that can be used to selectively retrieve data from iOS device backups, but these require that the backups be made to your computer; they cannot access data directly from an iCloud backup. If there is information in your iCloud backup that you desperately need, however, you could restore the iCloud backup to your iPhone—or even another iOS device that you have available—and then subsequently make a backup of that device to iTunes in order to get the data onto your computer where these utilities could be used to extract the required information.
Note that should you decide that you no longer need the old iPhone backup taking up storage in iCloud, you can also easily delete it from your iCloud storage directly from the Storage & Backup settings on your iPhone.
Simply go into your iCloud settings, choose Storage & Backup, Manage Storage and select the backup that you would like to remove. A summary screen will show the date and time the backup was made along with the size of the backup and a delete button that can be used to remove it from your iCloud account, freeing up the space for additional backups or other data.
- Will removing a credit card from Safari also remove it from Apple Pay?
- Can I mute Handoff calls coming into my Mac from my iPhone?
- How do I keep my iPhone calls from ringing on my Mac?
- Why doesn’t Traffic show up on my Today Notifications Screen?
- Why doesn’t my iPhone reconnect to Wi-Fi after I turn it on?
- Why can’t I see the iPad-style landscape view on my iPhone 6 Plus?
- Apple releases PowerBeats3 Wireless earphones
- Apple Pay launch in Japan encounters major problems
- Apple releases iOS 10.1, tvOS 10.0.1, watchOS 3.1
- New details about Apple Watch Nike+ exclusives, availability
- Apple’s website hints at possible Apple Pay launch in Germany
- ConnectSense Smart Outlet adds power monitoring, reduces price
- Automatic releases new Automatic Lite version of car monitoring accessory
- Apple releases fourth tvOS 10.0.1 beta
- iOS dev finds unimplemented one-handed keyboard in iOS code
- Apple sends out press invites for ‘Hello Again’ Oct. 27 Mac event
- Bowers & Wilkins P3 Series 2 Headphones
- Incase Icon, Pop, and Textured Snap for iPhone 7/7 Plus
- Philips Hue Motion Sensor
- Bowers & Wilkins P9 Signature Headphones
- Tech Armor FlexProtect and Shock Flex for iPhone 7/7 Plus
- SwitchEasy Flash and Fleur for iPhone 7/7 Plus
- Blue Microphones Raspberry Mobile Microphone
- Incipio Haven for iPhone 7 and Reprieve Sport for iPhone 7 Plus
- Mophie Hold Force Magnetic Case System for iPhone 7
- Speck Presidio and Tech21 Evo Tactical for iPhone 7
- Instant Expert: Secrets & Features of watchOS 3
- Instant Expert: Secrets & Features of tvOS 10
- Instant Expert: Secrets & Features of iOS 10
- Inside the betas: iOS 10 Photos gets Advanced Computer Vision
- Inside the betas: iOS 10 Music app delivers ‘clarity and simplicity’
- Inside the betas: iOS 10 Maps gets a major redesign
- Inside the betas: iOS 10 shakes up the user experience
- Inside the betas: watchOS 3 promises a real speed boost
- Inside the betas: A sneak peek at what’s new in tvOS 10
- Filling the Gap: A look at third-party HomeKit apps