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The iPhone switcher's guide: Move from iOS to Android and keep all your stuff

Michael Simon | Dec. 16, 2016
We can help move your photos, contacts, calendars, mail, music, and messages over to their new home.

That should be enough to get your account up and running, but if you’re still getting error messages, you might need to tweak the server settings. You can find the incoming IMAP and outgoing SMTP server settings on Apple’s website. And if you don’t want to use the GMail app that came with your phone, you can download any number of great ones from the Play Store, including Alto, Newton, Outlook, and others that you may be familiar with on iOS.


Here’s the only real stumbling block with switching between iOS and Android: Your messages don’t play nice between the two operating systems. Even if you’re moving between Android phones the system is less than ideal, mostly relying on third-party solutions that may or may not work.

imessage off
Don’t forget to turn off iMessage!

As we already discussed, Google offers an excellent solution baked into the Pixel, and Samsung offers something similar with its Smart Switch app, but otherwise there’s no guarantee that you’ll be able to bring your messages over. The most popular tool is iSMS2droid, but it relies on making an unencrypted iTunes backup, digging into your drive to find the SMS database file, and renaming it and converting it. Not exactly the easiest of solutions. 

So, unless you use WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, or some other over-the-top service, your iMessages will likely be forever locked on your old iPhone. But a clean slate might be for the best anyway since you’re going to be a green bubble from here on out. Because you’ve already turned off iMessage, right?


Now that the important information is all ported over, it’s time to get into the fun stuff. We know you’re going to be using your new phone to take tons of photos and videos, but all the ones you took with your old iPhone can come along too. And you won’t need to attach any cables to transfer them.

photos sync
Your Android photo library will look just practically the same as the one on your old iPhone.

All you need to do is download and run Google Photos on your old iPhone. Really, that’s it. Once you log in to your Google account, the app will do all the heavy lifting for you, scanning the entire contents of your photo library and dutifully copying everything that’s inside (including any photos and videos that reside on your iCloud Drive). And that’s not even the best part. Google Photos won’t even count the space it uses against your Google Drive storage limit, so long as you opt to store High Quality shots rather than full-size ones. If you used the Google Drive transfer process from earlier in this article, Google already put all your photos and videos in Google Photos, so you're all set.


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