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  • Setting up your new Android phone

While it gave me a choice, my job still hasn’t taken away my eagerness to unbox and play with a new Android phone. But before I get to the good part, I have to go through the tedious process of setting up and moving my data to the new device. However, if you’ve got a reliable data backup routine in place (and with some help from Google), you should be up and running your phone in just a few minutes. Here’s everything you need to know about setting up a new Android phone from scratch.

Before you start

We already have a full tutorial on the different ways to back up your old phone and restore data to the new one. But here I’m going to tackle the things I’m backing up to make sure nothing important is left out.


Android’s built-in backup tool takes care of the essentials – contacts, call history, SMS, apps and device settings – pretty good. But I also use SMS Backup & Restore app as a built-in security for my call and SMS details. Photos and videos are also important to me, and for them I use both Google Photos and Synology Photos. WhatsApp chats are another thing that needs to be moved to the new phone, so I’m running a new cloud backup right before making the change.


While most consumer apps save a copy of your data to their cloud, there are some privacy-focused apps like my 2FA Aegis app that you need to take a offline backup. Before switching to a new phone, remember to keep these backup files in a safe place away from your old device so that you can restore them later. As for my music, everything is already on Spotify or YouTube Music, so I don’t have to worry about that. But I still have to make sure that all files on device go to the new phone; if Google Drive for Android was compatible with folder syncing, I wouldn’t need to worry about that either.

Setting up your new Android phone

The steps for setting up an Android device described here are for a Google Pixel phone running Android 12. However, the screens may appear to be reconfigured on other phones and older versions of Android, but the options themselves won’t be different. . If needed, you can check the OEM section at the bottom for more details on non-Google devices. With that done, we can now take a look at the setup process:

  1. The first time you start your phone will show you a welcome screen with options to choose your preferred language and region and some vision parameters. These support options include basics like font and display size, as well as more advanced tools like To respond and Select to speak to help people with visual impairments.
  2. The phone will ask you to configure networks on the following screens. You can insert a physical SIM card at this point or download an eSIM (the process may vary depending on your country and carrier). Also connect to a Wireless network here to restore backups in the next step.
  3. After you have a working internet connection, the phone will take you to the data recovery page. If you have your old phone handy, you can transfer your data wirelessly or using a data cable, but extracting a recent backup from Google Drive is the easiest option. Press on Can’t use the old phone? and log into your Gmail account. You should then see the latest backup of your old phone. Tap on it, confirm your Old phone lock screen PIN / password / pattern, and select whatever you want to restore to your phone. When you are finished, press Restore. Visit our dedicated data transfer tutorial for a step-by-step guide.
    Image gallery (10 images)
  4. While your data is restored in the background, the phone continues with the setup process. Google will then ask for your permission for its various services, including backup, location history, and diagnostic data aggregation. All of these are optional even though they are enabled by default, so you can allow only a few or disable all of them before agreeing.
  5. In the last step, you are suggested to add a security lock to your phone using a PIN or password that usually accompanies your registered fingerprints as backup unlock methods. Fingerprint + PIN is the most common combination, but that’s okay if you’re feeling good about the good old lock pattern.

And that’s all! Your phone should be ready for use while the Play Store restores and updates your apps in the background.

Google may want you to check out some of its additional features or complete whatever is left in the initial setup. You will receive a notification to sort out these last things. In my case, it was my fingerprint that I hadn’t set up earlier, along with the ability to turn on Google Assistant and other basics like Pixel’s Now Playing, Always-on Display, and Adding. from another Gmail account.

Other OEM options

Chances are, your new Android phone isn’t made by Google. For a Samsung, OnePlus, or Xiaomi phone, you may see additional screens and options during the setup process compared to what you get on a Pixel. They can range from a user account to automatically log you into proprietary apps to sneakily trick you into agreeing to serve ads on the device.

Pictures 1-3: Samsung One user interface, 4-7: OnePlus OxygenOS, 8-9: Xiaomi MIUI

Generally, you can skip anything optional without worrying about breaking something on your phone. And beware of any pre-checked (often promotional) options that brands like Samsung and Xiaomi can slip (as highlighted in the included screenshots) to take advantage of your ignorance.

With Google’s robust backup mechanism, the whole process of migrating to a new phone has become fairly straightforward, while Android has also gotten smart enough to do the heavy lifting in the background while you play ecstatically. with your new phone. And in case you haven’t found the right Android smartphone for yourself yet, these are the best Android phones you should buy.

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