How to upgrade from iPhone 3G to 4S?

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by smorris, Oct 5, 2011.

  1. smorris macrumors member


    Jul 13, 2008
    Northern Ohio
    I've never gone through an iPhone upgrade before, so bear with me here.

    If I pre-order an iPhone 4S from Apple and have it shipped to my house, how do I activate it? My iPhone 3G has the larger sim card, so I can't simply swap it in like I used to with all previous phones. Do I need to then take it to an AT&T store to exchange cards and activate it?

    Thanks for any advice,
  2. DustinT macrumors 68000


    Feb 26, 2011
    You could do that and you'll get the new phone with a replacement SIM card. I have done this and Apple ships the new phone in a partially ready to activate form. So, when you power it own it performs the needed transfers for you.

    I would strongly recommend you backup your existing phone now to your computer. You'll want a current backup before you start any upgrading.
  3. jmf macrumors newbie

    Jun 24, 2009
    Upgrading - transferring texts & apps

    I'll also be upgrading for the first time, again going from a 3G to 4S and wondered how I go about transferring all the texts & apps etc from the old phone to the new one?
  4. davelanger macrumors 6502a

    Mar 25, 2009
    I had a 3G and went to a 4S, all you need to do is synch your 3g before plugging in your 4S, then you can plug in the 4S and synch its really simple.

    Also your apple ID will have everything you ever bough on the itunes store and you can update manually as well.

    As for the texts and such. I dont know if that is possible. For the contracts you can always take it the apple store and have them use that device to transfer all your contacts over

    Just make sure before you synch you have the newest version of itunes installed.
  5. CmdrThor macrumors member

    Jun 9, 2011
    Atlanta, GA
    Completely unnecessary.

    1) Back up your 3G to iTunes
    2) Unbox your 4s and go through the set-up process. It comes with a micro sim and you won't need your old sim from your 3G
    3) When it asks you whether you want to set up as a new phone or restore from a backup, choose restore from a backup. Since your 3G cannot get iOS5 and create an iCloud backup, you choose an iTunes Backup

    After restoring from your 3G backup your contacts, texts, settings and everything will be just like they were. If you are using the same computer you used to sync your music and apps with, those should sync as well. Your apps should start downloading to your new device regardless because you never have to repurchase those.

    You don't need to go to an AT&T or Apple store for any of this.
  6. deeddawg macrumors 604

    Jun 14, 2010
  7. CmdrThor macrumors member

    Jun 9, 2011
    Atlanta, GA
    Probably a good idea, but I didn't turn my 3GS off during the process. Once the activation went through, I stopped receiving calls and texts on the 3GS and it said no service. It still could receive iMessages though because I was on Wifi.
  8. AlphaVictor87 macrumors 6502a


    Sep 7, 2011
    Saint Louis, MO
    I've heard a lot of bad new like people getting glitches and slowness when restoring from a backup when moving from a 3gs or 3g to a 4s.

    The only thing i can think of that i would be wary of is contacts, but like others have said i can just have them transfer those in the AT&T store for me when i eventually get my 4s.

    If i have that done, can i just take my 4s home and sync it and get all my music then download all my apps manually (seeing as now ios5 says if you've installed an app before or not)

    Is this a possibility? or should i just suck it up and take my 4s home when i get it and restore from backup?
  9. jmf macrumors newbie

    Jun 24, 2009
    That's great, thanks. Not worried about the contacts, I have those all synced via MobileMe anyway, it was more the texts that I was more concerned with, everything else is all available elsewhere other than the phone, so just wanted to make sure I could definitely transfer those across.

    I've picked up a microsim already from O2, so plan to swap my number over to that ahead of time so that'll be sorted before switching phones to save time.
  10. MisterDisney macrumors 6502a

    Jun 20, 2010
    You'll be able to use your old phone right up until it's deactivated and your new phone is activated. I wouldn't worry too much about that part.

    I would also recommend setting up the phone as new and just syncing your content to it. But it's up to you.
  11. jmf macrumors newbie

    Jun 24, 2009
    It's not about being able to use the phone or the synced content, I have texts that I don't want to lose. If I set up the phone as new, how exactly do I 'sync' the texts since they're not available anywhere other than the back up and on my old phone?

    I think I'll go through the restore route to be on the safe side.
  12. pdqgp macrumors 68020


    Mar 23, 2010
    Your texts saved when iTunes backs up your phone. Once you have your new 4s you just plug it in and restore it through iTunes, using the back up from your most recent backup of your old phone.

    I know that sounds weird, but I don't write the instructions for Apple :eek: It's pretty seamless. I upgraded from my 3Gs and the longest most painful part was just waiting on the apps to all sync up on my new 4s.
  13. HeatherA macrumors 6502


    Jan 31, 2009
    I upgraded from a 3Gs to a 4s without a hitch. I just restored my phone from my last iTunes backup after activating it.

    Just an FYI my 3Gs was running 5.0 jailbroken and unlocked at the time of the last backup. Didn't affect my factory unlocked 4s at all.
  14. Mr.C macrumors 601

    Apr 3, 2011
    London, UK.
    Contrary to posts here and elsewhere I've never had any problems when restoring from a previous backup on my phones. I've had all the iPhones from the original and all on O2. Every time I just restored from a back up and everything including all my texts got transferred over.

    When I switched from the 3GS to the 4 I got a micro sim before hand from an O2 store with my settings transferred over. I just popped that in the 4 and restored it from the most current backup of my 3GS. When I got my 4S I just transferred the sim over and whilst setting up the phone restored it from my 4 backup.

    If you set up the phone as new you can sync everything including contacts but you will lose your texts and any game app data like game saves.

Share This Page