We are in a world where a vast majority of our photos are taken on the device that is always with us instead of traditional cameras. I still like to take photos on a camera, but a majority of the photos I take are on my phone and it is really important to me that I don’t lose any of those photos. I just saw this post from a friend on Facebook, and I want to make sure that it doesn’t happen to anyone else.

Phone Backup, Back-up

I am going to start by saying that I am a bit excessive about backing up the photos on my phone! Currently, my phone photos back up to FOUR different places! I do this because I want to know how different apps work so I can be knowledgeable in making the best recommendations to my clients. I do recommend that everyone have two different backups “just in case”. No backup is perfect, and I can attest to the fact that almost all of them will just stop working occasionally.

My current phone is a Google Pixel 2. I purchased the Pixel in February 2018 because when I woke up one morning, I picked up my phone from the charger and realized that it had not charged at all overnight and was no longer holding a charge or charging. I have almost always had an Android smartphone (the exception was from 2008–10 when I had a Palm Pilot; the Android was a good transition from my Palm Pilot). I briefly considered an iPhone just because of Facetime and Airdrop, but I can use my iPad or my Mac for both of those.

I am going to share my likes and dislikes of phone photo backup features and phone apps, but I won’t get into all the details about each program because that will be several future blogs.

how do you back up your phone photos

Google Photos

The Google Pixel 2 Phone App is Google Photos, hence the reason I started using Google Photos.

Likes

  • The facial recognition is AMAZING!
  • The “Assistant” does fun collages and mini-movies
  • It is totally automatic (it never seems to accidentally turn off)
  • Works with Android or iPhone

Dislikes

  • Downloads to a computer are not seamless but because I have other ways to do this easily, I haven’t done much with Google Sync, etc.
  • Most of my dislikes of Google Photo is the entire system and not so much the phone app (metadata doesn’t stay with photos, adding facial tags, etc.)

Cost

  • Unlimited photo storage for free (high quality and a reduced image size)
  • Paid plans start at $1.99 for 100 GB per month up to $99 for 1 TB per year.

I like using Google Photos as one backup but not as an only backup.

how do you back up your phone photos

Forever*

Likes

  • Choices of how and when to upload (over data or wifi)
  • If you have sharing turned on, it is only for albums and the photos do not automatically go into an album
  • Works with Android or iPhone

Dislikes

  • Needs to be checked on a regular basis to be sure it is uploading
  • Due to limited space, needs to be edited frequently

Cost

  • Up to 2 GB for free
  • Paid plans are all Lifetime plans (your life plus 100 years) but you can pay monthly for a year or one-time payments. The 10 GB plan is a one-time payment of $199 which is the starting point for Forever storage.

how do you back up your phone photos

Dropbox

Likes

  • Choices of how and when to upload (over data or wifi)
  • File names are Year-Month-Day Time (2018-09-06 18.41.44)
  • Automatically and almost instantly backs up on computer(s)
  • Works with Android or iPhone

Dislikes

  • Must have a personal account
  • Due to limited space (if using free account), needs to be edited frequently

Cost

  • Up to 2GB for free
  • Paid plans are 1 TB or TB for individuals and can be purchased monthly or annual. Prices start at $9.99 per month for Plus (1 TB) and up to $199 per year for Professional (2 TB).

how do you back up your phone photos

pCloud*

Likes

  • Multiple devices can be linked to Auto Upload to one account
  • Automatically and almost instantly on a computer
  • The date is in the File Name: IMG_20180906_184144 (not as easy to read as Dropbox)
  • Works with Android or iPhone

Dislikes

  • Needs to be checked frequently because it does stop working and needs to be restarted

Cost:

  • Up to 20 GB for free
  • Paid plans are either 500 GB or 2 TB and can be purchased monthly, annually, or lifetime. Prices start at $4.99 a month for 500 GB and up to $350 for a Lifetime of 2 TB

My final thoughts

I do recommend using iCloud if you are an iPhone and Mac user because the syncing with phone and computer is seamless, but if you are an iPhone and a PC user, the transfer is much more complicated. I recently was trying to get photos from my sister-in-law who uses an iPhone and optimizes her iCloud (saves space on her phone) and it took about an hour of “workarounds” to get the family trip photos from her iCloud to my Mac.

The best option for phone backup depends on the individual, BUT please pick at least one today because I hate to hear that someone has lost all of their photos.

*I am an Ambassador/Affiliate with these companies and would appreciate you using the links I provide if you decide to purchase as I will earn a small commission. I would also be willing to answer any questions before you purchase.