Android phones sync a lot of data back to the cloud but for some reason it doesn’t include SMS messages. If you’re anything like me, you send hundreds of these per week and it would be nice to keep some, if not all, of them somewhere safe. While Google doesn’t include them with its default Sync service there are other SMS backup tools for Android.
If you want to protect your SMS before doing a significant upgrade or factory reset or would just like to back them up in case you lose your phone, you can. You just need a third-party app to do it. I have tried and tested a range of these apps so you don’t have to. The result is what I think are the five best SMS backup tools for Android.
The best apps I could find were premium apps. A couple have free versions but they either didn’t have the power or utility I was looking for. So bear that in mind when choosing your app of choice. Some will have a free version to try before you buy but you might not get the full experience or satisfaction from it.
1. Helium App Sync and Backup
Helium App Sync and Backup is a complete backup solution for your Android device. Not only will it back up all your SMS but your MMS, contacts, data, call log and anything else you care to mention. The app is simple to use, easy to configure and just gets on with the job. If you want to back your device up to your computer, you will also need a companion app installed onto your PC too.
2. SMS Backup+
SMS Backup+ is another neat app that is initially free but contains in-app purchases. You will also need a Gmail account for this to work, but you’re using an Android phone so you have one anyway right? You need IMAP enabled in Gmail for this to work, but once done simply install the app with default settings, enter your details and the app takes care of the rest. To access the backup, go into Gmail and you should see a menu on the left side called SMS. That’s it.
3. SMS Backup & Restore
SMS Backup & Restore does exactly what it says on the tin. It saves your data in XML format which you can backup to the cloud or locally depending on your needs. It is more lightweight than some backup apps but gets the job done in a simple and easy to use manner. It can save to SD card, to Gmail, Google Drive or Dropbox too which is nice.
4. My Backup Pro
My Backup Pro is more of a complete Android backup tool than just SMS. A premium app, it can automate backups, upload them to the cloud and a few other tricks. While it works very well on standard Android devices, if your smartphone is rooted you can also back up app data, games, save files and all that good stuff. Restoring files is easy too which is the true test of any backup solution!
5. Super Backup & Restore
Is Super Backup & Restore really super? Well it is pretty good but I don’t know if a backup app could ever be regarded as super. Regardless of that, the app is simple to install and configure and can back up SMS, apps, contacts and more to your SD card, Gmail or Google Drive. Restoration is simple too, just a matter of tapping Restore within the SMS section of the app and letting it take care of the rest.
Options, lots of options
If you visit the Google Play Store and look for SMS backup apps there are hundreds there. I have just scraped the surface with these five. The advantage you have is that I have tried and tested all of these and all work with Android Marshmallow and Nougat.
Usually I prefer to use free apps but given the importance of backing up a smartphone I thought these low price of most of these was worth the cost. While a couple of these do have free versions and one has in-app purchases, it isn’t too high a price to pay for the peace of mind of knowing all your smartphone data is safe should anything happen.
Do you use a different SMS backup tool? Tell us about your experience below!