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Tuesday, May 29, 2012

1232. Sync Phone Contacts

Dee asks: "I have a lot of contacts on my phone and I am worried if I lose my phone I will lose all of my contacts. How can I back up the contacts on my phone?"

This is a really important question because everyone is likely to loose a phone at one point or another. Unless you physically attach it to your person, it's easy to drop, misplace, or destroy.

If you are using a standard (that is, not-smart) phone, you will need to rely on a service that your provider gives you.  For example, Verizon and AT&T provide services that back up the contents of your phone using their own tools. They may charge for the service, but it is (or was, the last time we checked) available. Other providers may supply a similar service, as well.

If you are using a smartphone like an iPhone, a Windows Phone, or an Android phone then you have more options.
I for example store all my contacts on Google, as part of my Gmail account. All my contacts "live" on Google's server, and I just sync my phone with my Google account. If I were to lose my phone, all my email and contact information would still be store on the Google servers, and I could easily replace the phone and simply sync the new one with the existing online information. For more information on how to set this up, check out this link.

If you use an iPhone, you can also take advantage of Apple's iCloud service. You can use iCloud to perform an automatic backup of the contents of your phone to Apple's servers for you. This is a free service. It comes with the phone, and only requires that you sign up for the service. For more information, check out this link.

If you have a smart phone, you should take advantage of one of these ways to sync your contacts with one of these online services so losing your phone won't cause you to lose all of your contacts.

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