You use your phone for all of your WhatsApp messaging, but one day, you accidentally put your phone in the washing machine. Times like these are why it’s important to back up your WhatsApp messages in the event that you destroy your phone. If you want to make sure that your messages are safe, you can back them up using Google Drive. If you want to know how, well, here’s a handy how-to guide to show you how to back up your Whatsapp messages.
WhatsApp allows you to back up your messages in two ways. Firstly, you can use the local backup. When you backup locally, your messages are saved in a file on your phone. If you uninstall the app from your phone and reinstall it, the app will search for that file and restore your files.
How to backup and restore your WhatsApp messages via Google Drive
If you want to save your data to an online location, you can use Google Drive. The app will save a copy of the messages on a file and upload it right to Google Drive and download it when you want to restore it. This way, if your phone were to be lost or destroyed, your messages will be safe.
Backing up the messages
If you want to back up your messages, you’ll need to enable the Google Drive feature first. Open the WhatsApp app and, on the top right of the home screen, you’ll see the three-dot menu. Tap it and go to the Settings. Tap on Chats and go to Chat backup.
There, you’ll see the hub for all of your backups; this includes both online and offline backups. Up top is the section where you can backup your chats on the device. It shows you the last time your chats were backed up both locally and online. It also gives you the option to backup the chats manually, but that’s only locally.
Under that, you’ll see the Google Drive setting. Skip to the bottom and look at the “Back up using cellular” and “Include videos” options. Toggle those on or off depending on your preferences. If you enable the first option, the app will back up your chats using your data as well as Wi-Fi. Just know that this will eat up some of your data if you’re on a limited plan. Enable the second option if you want to back up your videos. If you have a lot of videos, it will use up data and Drive storage.
Now, we get to where you get your backup set up. Tap on the “Back up to Google Drive” button, and it will show you a pop-up. This asks how often you want the phone to back up your chats to the Drive. You can pick daily, weekly, or monthly, to have your chats regularly backed up. Or, you can have it back up your chats whenever you tap on the green backup button up top.
Restoring the messages
Now that you have your messages backed up, you’ll want to know how to retrieve them in case you need them back. First, make sure you’re signed in to your Google account on the device. This is important to do because, when you start up WhatsApp, it will look for the Google account that’s on the device to decide which drive to access.
When you start up the app, you’ll see the screen pictured above. It will say that a backup was found. Under that, you’ll see the email address associated with the account, the size fo the backup, and how long ago it was backed up.
On the bottom, you’ll see the option to either restore or skip. Just know that, if you skip this step, you won’t be able to restore at a later date. Don’t fret if you accidentally skip it, however. Just uninstall the app and reinstall it; you’ll get the same screen.
Tap on the Restore button, and you’ll get another screen with a small animation on the bottom. The amount of time this takes will vary depending on how big the file is. When the file is successfully restored, you’ll see a little checkmark appear. After that point, you’ll be taken to your home screen.
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