iCloud Will Make Things Easier, But For Now, Please Sync Your iPhone

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Most of us sync our iDevices. If we have been using them since the days of the iPod, we know all about the process of plugging it in and letting iTunes do its thing. However, there are some users who picked up an iPhone or an iPod touch, maybe an iPad. They only plugged into their computer that first time they powered the device on, because they were prompted to. This is because they no longer have to import content to their device. They can buy directly from their iPad, iPhone or iPod touch, and they never got into the habit of syncing and backing up.

People Don't Sync?

However, we heard yesterday that half of all users who take their iPhone to the Genius Bar have never synced their iPhone. That's a scary number. Many of us have stuff on our phones that we can't afford to lose such as important phone numbers and other contact information.

How to I sync?

Syncing and backing up is really nothing more than plugging in your iDevice and launching iTunes (if it's not set to autolaunch).

You will see that your device is being synced by looking at the top of the iTunes window. Your iDevice will also show a lock screen with the battery and read "Sync in Progress." This whole process may take a few minutes, but it's worth it. You don't want to lose that data should something go wrong, such as losing your iPhone.

Anything Worth Knowing?

If you click on on your device under the left-most column in iTunes, you can take a look at a variety of options. If you have an iPhone, it may be a good idea to set 'Open iTunes when this iPhone is connected' that way, iTunes will launch and sync when you plug in your iPhone. Also, we suggest you Encrypt iPhone backup. It's a little safer, and it seems to actually work faster when syncing.

What Now?

Say you drop your iPhone in the toilet (don't ask, it's just a hypothetical situation). You know the handset is done for. If you've backed up and synced your data across devices, the worst that happens is you buy a new iPhone and plug it into your computer. You will be notified that you can start clean or use data from a previous iPhone profile. Use your previous data, and your iPhone will be restored to the settings you had before you lost your phone. This is also great for updating (for instance, when you buy an iPhone 5 or whatever) or if you ever need to wipe your device clean.

That's a lot of work!

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See, you can set up what services sync with iCloud.

It's really not that bad. You just kind of plug the thing in and forget about it until it's done. The first sync always takes a while as does any major iOS update. Luckily, Apple is introducing iCloud sometime soon. iCloud will make iOS much easier to manage across devices. Songs purchased, photos taken, contacts added, all of that will be synced without us having to think about it. It's a nice idea, we just hope it's implemented well when it arrives.

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When the computer is within range on your network, you can sync over the air. Making it even easier to ensure your content is backed up.

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