Here's How Apple's New iPhone to iPhone Data Migration Feature Works in iOS 12.4

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Apple this week released iOS 12.4, the newest version of iOS 12 available for iPhones and iPads. One of the new features in iOS 12.4 is an updated data migration option that uses device to device transfers rather than relying on iCloud.

Apple didn't provide much information on the new data migration feature, so we thought we'd check it out in our latest YouTube video.


Setting up an iPhone using the new options uses the same Quick Start process that's been in place since iOS 11. When you get a new iPhone, you simply need to hold your existing iPhone nearby to initiate the setup process on the new device.

Quick Start confirms your Apple ID and then uses the camera to pair the two devices to one another by scanning an animation. After the pairing process completes (which includes the setup of Touch ID and Face ID), you'll see the new "Transfer from iPhone" option.

Transferring from iPhone, as the name suggests, bypasses iCloud and migrates data from one iPhone to another in a device to device capacity, which means it's done offline.

Prior to Apple's introduction of this feature, Quick Start only offered a "Download from iCloud" option which required an iCloud backup.

The new iPhone to iPhone option is a useful way to transfer data for those who only have 5GB of free Apple storage, as there's not always enough room to create an iCloud backup. It's also useful when Wi-Fi connection speeds are limited, and it will ultimately make it quicker to get a new iPhone up and running.

It works similarly to an iCloud backup or an iTunes backup, transferring over information like photos, app information, device preferences and settings, and more. App data is transferred over, but as with an iCloud backup, apps are downloaded directly from the App Store rather than from your existing iPhone.

The amount of time that it takes to transfer data from one iPhone to another will vary based on what's on the existing iPhone, but Apple provides a data transfer estimate on the main data transfer screen.

Using this method, it's faster to get photos, music, and other media from one iPhone to another because there's no longer a need to wait for that content to download from iCloud.

The new iPhone to iPhone data transfer process requires both devices to be running the release version of iOS 12.4 or later, and it won't work on devices running earlier versions of iOS 12.

iPhone to iPhone data transfers can be done over Wi-Fi, but there's also an option to transfer data using a wired connection by utilizing a USB3 Camera Adapter and a Lightning cable.

Article Link: Here's How Apple's New iPhone to iPhone Data Migration Feature Works in iOS 12.4
 

zorinlynx

macrumors 603
May 31, 2007
6,225
9,423
Florida, USA
This is just me, but, I always start fresh (except for contacts/calendar/notes/reminders) when I get a new phone. :)

I may do that with my next phone, just to get rid of the cruft built up over time.

I've been restoring backups to upgrade my phone since my first iPhone (4) in 2010. Nine years of cruft! What's amazing is that everything still works smoothly.
 

firewire9000

macrumors 6502
Sep 15, 2015
336
460
This is just me, but, I always start fresh (except for contacts/calendar/notes/reminders) when I get a new phone. :)

I’ve been using iPhone since 2007 and had almost every one of them and except for a very few times I always restored my backup without a problem. Sometimes problems happen but you don’t need to do this every time because it’s somewhat hassling.
 
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[AUT] Thomas

macrumors 6502a
Mar 13, 2016
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Graz [Austria]
I’ve been using iPhone since 2007 and had almost every one of them and except for a very few times I always restored my backup without a problem. Sometimes problems happen but you don’t need to do this every time because it’s somewhat hassling.
It's no just from a technical perspective, but also to clean-up the device. Checking the iOS Setting once a year or so doesn't hurt and not reinstalling apps that you never used also helps in maintaining privacy...

That said, I always use the Mac for that kind of transition... so no benefit for me...
 
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Optheduim

macrumors regular
Jun 9, 2011
160
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NYC
So is this going to speed up that process compared to download from the Cloud?

I've alway started fresh! Clean slate to avoid cruft/unwanted random code. It can be a pain when bringing the phone back to normal use, but I feel its worth it!
 
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Optheduim

macrumors regular
Jun 9, 2011
160
224
NYC
How long does that take? Do you have a "system"? I tried that once but it was too much of a hassle.

My system is: Download and setup your most used/needed apps when you have the new phone. Then wait until Sunday Morning for the rest.

I've always done this. I don't know why. lol
 

Compile 'em all

macrumors 601
Apr 6, 2005
4,105
213
So is this going to speed up that process compared to download from the Cloud?

I've alway started fresh! Clean slate to avoid cruft/unwanted random code. It can be a pain when bringing the phone back to normal use, but I feel its worth it!

What is “random code”? You a windows user by any chance? There is no “cruft”. You have iOS and then apps. Apps run in their container. There is nothing more to it. There is literally no difference between you setting up a device as new and installing and downloading your old things to it or doing a full device restore.
 

calstanford

macrumors 6502a
Nov 25, 2014
557
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Hong Kong
This is why Apple is so ahead of Google with their **** android system. I gave up on that as I could never migrate properly icons and home screens between devices
 

jayducharme

macrumors 68040
Jun 22, 2006
3,762
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The thick of it
Will this be similar to an itunes encrypted backup?
For example, would I need to re enter any app or mail passwords?
I'm curious about this as well. The migration feature might be good if you're in a store trading in your old iPhone for a new one and you want to get it up and running quickly. But an encrypted backup with a Mac is still the most thorough.
 
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