How to set up automatic backups for your Google Pixel, and save an unlimited amount of photos and videos

Your Google Pixel can create automatic backups with unlimited storage for certain data.

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Your Google Pixel can create automatic backups with unlimited storage for certain data.
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Hollis Johnson/Business Insider

  • Knowing how to backup your devices is always good practice – and Google Pixel phones come with an automatic backup option, but it needs to be activated by the user to work.
  • The automatic backups will save only a limited amount of data for most apps, but an unlimited amount of photos, videos, contacts, and calendar data.
  • Here’s an overview of automatic backups and how to turn them on for your Pixel phone.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Everyone knows you’re supposed to keep backups, but a lot of people put it off as long as they can. And sometimes, that backfires. That’s why the best time to backup your Google Pixel is right now.

Lucky for Pixel phone owners, these phones have an automatic backup feature that can be turned on at any time.

It will backup an unlimited amount of data from your calendar, contacts, photos and videos. You get up to 25 MB of data per app for all other apps, call history, device settings, and SMS messages. Everything that’s backed up is saved to your Google account.

Here’s what you need to know to turn on automatic backup for any Pixel phone.

Check out the products mentioned in this article:

Google Pixel 3 (From $649.99 at Best Buy)

How to backup your Google Pixel phone

1. Swipe down from the top of the screen and open the Settings by tapping the gear icon.

Open Settings by tapping the gear icon.

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Open Settings by tapping the gear icon.
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Devon Delfino/Business Insider

2. Tap “System.”

Open your System settings.

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Open your System settings.
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Devon Delfino/Business Insider

3. Select “Backup.”

4. Toggle the “Backup to Google Drive” option to the on position (it will turn blue).

Flip the switch to turn on automatic backups.

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Flip the switch to turn on automatic backups.
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Devon Delfino/Business Insider

How to restore your Google Pixel using a backup

If something does happen to your phone after you’ve enabled these automatic backups, you can restore older versions of your phone based on that saved data.

If you’ve restarted your phone, start by entering your phone’s PIN, password, or pattern, selecting “Start,” and following the on-screen steps to start your phone. Make sure you’re also connected to WIFI at this point.

When prompted, select “Next” for “Copy apps and data” followed by “Can’t use old phone.” Then, under the “Copy another way” tab, select “OK” and then “a backup from the cloud.”

You’ll then be able to sign into your Google account, retrieve the backed up data and follow the remaining steps to get your phone back up and running.

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