At CeBIT 2014, Samsung introduce Samsung Cloud Print, a cloud printing solution. That’s a different system but more than two years later, the South Korean tech giant is using the Samsung Cloud reference once again as another service. Samsung Cloud — which was exclusive to the Note 7 untill the S7 and S7 Edge were updated to support it– isn’t a full-fledged Dropbox, Google Drive, or iCloud Drive competitor. It’s name is a bit misleading, because it really only does one thing: back up your phone.
It’s a huge relief for Samsung Android users who often turn to third-party solutions for backing up and restoring devices. Samsung Cloud make that process a lot easier and then some. Here’s everything you need to know.
Samsung Cloud works continuously to back up native apps such as Calendar and Contacts, as well as photos, videos and select third-party apps, so users can retrieve data from any device or transfer data to a new device. In addition, Samsung Cloud is designed to also back up the home screen and user settings. So in the event of a new purchase or the loss of a device, even shortcuts and layout settings can be restored.
When a user activates the Auto Backup feature, the device will automatically upload information to Samsung Cloud via a Wi-Fi connection every 24 hours, provided the device’s screen is off and it has been connected to a power source for at least an hour.
If you’ve used Google’s Android backup service to restore a new device, you’ve undoubtedly experienced the frustration that comes along with it. Since Google requires each developer to built support for its backup service into the app, the overall experience is hit or miss. One app will fully backup, restoring its own settings and what not when restored on a device (Twitter app Talon comes to mind as an app that successfully does this), while the next app will install and force you set it back up from scratch. And that’s when the restore option works to begin with. It’s one of the reasons I do not think twice rooting a brand new phone.
Samsung Cloud handles backing up of a device the same was Apple’s iCloud backup works — all apps are backed up, without requiring any work on the developer’s part.
The cloud service will store any personal data and multimedia files from your Contacts to Calendar, Memes & Notes, Photos, Videos, Voice recordings, Music, and Documents. Samsung Cloud can also save device data and settings from Bookmarks to Call logs, Device settings, Email accounts, App data, and even Home screen layout.
However, it’s a good idea to still use Google’s backup service to keep items such as your Google contacts and calendar backed up and synced across your devices.
Here’s what gets backed up according to the main settings page:
- Contacts (Samsung account only)
- Calendar (Samsung account only)
- Samsung Notes
- Internet (Samsung’s browser)
- Keyboard data
One would think that’s all but because Samsung loves hiding menus under menus under what not, its after selecting Back up my data that it reveals the true magic that is Samsung Cloud.
In addition to the items above, Samsung Cloud backs up:
- Phone call logs
- Clock settings (alarms)
- Home screen layout, wallpapers, widgets
- Apps. Complete with APK, app data and app settings
- Device settings (Wi-Fi, ringtones, etc.)
To put it in words that form a sentence, about all the important data you care about. Unlike other backup services, Samsung Cloud will allow you to restore certain aspects of your device at any time. For example, you are rearranging your homescreen and uninstalling apps putting on new ones its not turning out well, and you decide the one you already had was better you could go into Settings > Cloud and accounts > Samsung Cloud > Restore and select to restore just my home screen layout and/or installed apps. An alert follows a few seconds later and you’re back in time!
This feature alone is sure to come in handy should you get overzealous when rearranging your homescreen or deleting apps, only to wish you could easily go back to how things used to be.