My journey into the hallowed golden jail of Steve Jobs started in about 2008 with the brand new shiny iPhone 3G. I was Palm guy through and through. I had started with a Palm II in about 1998, I wonder a Palm V, a 7, an m130, and then moved to the Palm Treo 650 and then 680. But the iPhone was new and this great concept called apps.
For the record, Palm had those first, but they just never had the marketing down to make it real. Not to mention, the data service in those days was just to slow for anything useful.
I bought into the 3G, upgraded to the 3GS, then to the 4, then the 4S. Along the way, I’ve bought an iPad one ( still running! ), an iPad II ( now owned by a thief in Spain ), an iPad III ( owned by a thief in Houston) not to mention an couple of Macbook Pros, Apple TVs, and Apple Mini.
So a few weeks ago, the unthinkable happened. My profile in my iPhone 4s corrupted. What do I mean corrupted? I mean no data access if I’m not on wifi.
Imagine, going for hours of the day without internet access. And even worse, imagine travelling without network access unless you’re at the hotel. My boss actually threatened to come down to Canada and smash my phone since he “couldn’t get ahold of me”. This also meant that SMS messages weren’t getting through etc…
Sucks to say the least.
So I finally bit the bullet and decided to start my entire Apple iPhone experience from scratch. I bit the bullet, plugged in my iPhone to my trusty macbook and clicked on that RECOVER button.
You know, the one that you look at and just shiver in horror as you imagine rebuilding everything in your phone from scratch?
So this was a lot less painful than I imagine. The actual processor connecting to my iCloud account was, as expected, seamless. My contacts, calendars, etc.. all came back as expected.
I did have to recreate my entire favourite list, which was probably a good thing as there was a couple of people who didn’t belong on their anymore.
This was the unexpected benefit here. I had a bunch of applications on my phone that had been there for years. And to be honest, I was keeping them on their “in case I needed them”. They were taking up space and I hadn’t used some of them in years. I wasn’t prepared to delete them, but I’ll tell you when it came time for me to reinstall them, I was a lot more ruthless in my selection process. I probably gained an extra gig or two in space on my phone.
This was the one that hurt. I had text messages on my phone dating back to 2008. I had over 9,000 text on my phone and like everyone else I know. There was a ton of data in there that I had “just in case”. Picture people had sent me that I never downloaded into my photo app. Messages from people who aren’t in my life anymore. Messages from my wife, etc… I’m basically a data hoarder, so I’ve got everything. It was just PAINFUL for me to walk away form all that history. Thankfully, google to the rescue and I found a few different apps that claimed to be able to recover data from the iPhone backup and move it over to a CSV file.
Ok.. one step forward, but not what I was looking for exactly.
And then I stumbled upon SMS Backup Transfer which promised to do exactly what I was looking for. The application promised to retrieve all the text messages from my iPhone backup, and then allowed me to restore JUST the SMS database back to the a new iPhone without any of the other corrupted profile information that was giving me all the trouble.
This software delivered on everything it promised. I was able to easily import my SMS database from my previous iPhone back and just click on the “restore to iPhone” button and all my data is back. Safe and Secure for a low low price of $25.
Sure, that may seem a little steep for some people, but I’ll tell you it was worth it to me to have all the data back.
The SMS database was the only thing that I actually had any problems with and this was solved with about 10 minutes on google and a small purchase. Now I just hope the phone continues to run for another few weeks until my iPhone 5s arrives. On the bright side, I’ll be starting life with my 5s with a new born backup that doesn’t have 6+ years of legacy upgrade data in it.