How to upgrade to your new iPhone without losing data

The new iPhone SE 3 and fresh green variants of the iPhone 13 and 13 Pro are now officially available. Let’s look at how to transfer data to new iPhones with several different options to make sure you don’t lose any data.

No matter if you’re upgrading to the iPhone SE 3, iPhone 13, or a different iPhone, the options below will work. And in case you need a refresher, we’ll also cover the process to factory reset/fully erase your old iPhone.

And keep in mind if you’re upgrading in a carrier store or at another retailer – don’t let a salesperson rush you through the process or handle it for you. It’s best to verify for yourself that all your data is transferring/transferred and that your old iPhone is wiped before handing it in.

How to transfer data to new iPhone without losing anything

Option 1: Direct transfer

For most, the Quick Start direct transfer will be the easiest way to upgrade to your new iPhone and get all your data moved over seamlessly (requires iOS 11 or later and Bluetooth turned on).

You can even check to see if your current iPhone is ready to quickly transfer to your new iPhone ahead of time (but it’s not required). On your current iPhone, head to Settings > General > Transfer or Reset iPhone > and tap Get Started at the top.

In either case, when you’re ready to transfer all your data to your new iPhone:

  1. Turn on your new iPhone and bring it next to your old iPhone
  2. Look for the Quick Start option to appear on your old iPhone’s screen
  3. Confirm your Apple ID is correct and follow the prompts to transfer all your data
  4. Keep both iPhones close to each other (and plugged in to be safe) until the process is complete

If for some reason you’re having trouble with the direct transfer, you can fall back on restoring from an iCloud or Mac/PC backup.

Option 2: iCloud or Mac

  1. Make a fresh backup with iCloud or your Mac (tutorial here)
  2. Power on your new iPhone
  3. Follow the on-screen prompts – skip the Quick Start option – then choose Restore from iCloud Backup or Restore from Mac/PC Backup
  4. Sign in with iCloud and choose a backup, or plug in your new iPhone to your Mac/PC with a Lightning cable to restore from a Mac/PC backup

How to factory reset your old iPhone

  1. Open the Settings app, then tap General
  2. Swipe to the bottom and tap Transfer or Reset iPhone
  3. Choose Erase All Content and Settings
  4. Follow the prompts to completely erase your iPhone


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