Happy holidays! If you’ve just received the latest version of the iPhone, the coveted iPhone 11, 11 Pro or Pro Max, chances are you’re either upgrading from an old model or joining the Apple family for the first time. Either way, you’re going to want to learn how to set up a new iPhone properly and retrieve all the information from your old phone. Check out the best way to transfer your information over and start using your device ASAP.
For current iPhone users
Back up your old device
The iCloud method is currently the most convenient way to back up your old Apple device. However, you can also choose to back up your device onto your personal computer.
To back up with iCloud:
- Connect your device to your personal Wi-Fi network.
- Open Settings and select [your name] at the top of the menu.
- Choose iCloud and then iCloud Backup. Toggle the function on so the button is illuminated green.
- Select Back Up Now and make sure to stay connected to a Wi-Fi network until the backup is complete.
Monitor the backup’s progress by returning to the iCloud menu above and checking the date and time of your last completed backup. When the process is complete, the day should update to the current date.
To back up with iTunes:
- Connect your phone to your personal computer using a lightning cable. Users with macOS Mojave 10.14 and earlier can open iTunes to locate their connected device. Users with macOS Catalina 10.15, can open the Finder app.
- Select your device from the menu and find the Backup section in General settings.
- Choose Back up your most important data on your iPhone to iCloud and select Back Up Now
- When the process is complete, you will see an updated time and date in the Last backup to this Mac section.
Enable Quick Start and transfer data
Apple’s newest Quick Start function is the fastest way to set up a new iPhone with all the old features of your previous device. But your old phone will need to be running iOS 11 or later before use.
- Turn on your iPhone 11 and place it near your old device. When the Quick Start screen appears, enter the Apple ID that you’d like to use to set up your device.
- Press Continue and wait for the Quick Start animation to appear on your new device.
- Hold your new device over the old and position the animation in the viewfinder.
- Wait for the Finish on New [Device] to appear and enter your old device’s passcode on your new one when prompted.
- Set up Face ID for your new device when prompted.
- Select Transfer from iPhone when you’re ready to transfer data from your old iPhone to the new one.
Users transferring data by way of lightning cable will see the transfer icon to show the two devices are connected. With this method, you can pick and choose which settings to transfer. During the migration process, be sure to keep both devices near each other and plugged into a power source at all times.
Complete your setup
After you move to a new iPhone, you may need to complete a few more steps after data transfer to ensure your new device is working as your old one did. If you utilize any of the following features, here are a few things you should double-check:
- Mail: Open the app and enter your password if prompted to do so. Allow your emails to download to your new device or set up a new account.
- Contacts: If you’re missing any contacts in the app, there may have been an issue during the migration process. Manage old contacts and find out how to properly download what you’re missing.
- Calendar: Events and appointments scheduled on your old iPhone should now be in your new Calendar app. Use iCloud to transfer any missing information that may have been lost in an improper migration.
- Notifications: If you typically utilize apps that send notifications, you may need to enable them on your new device. Go to Settings and then Notifications. Click through the apps listed to enable banner, badge and sound notifications.
- Apple Pay: Add any credit, debit or prepaid cards to your Wallet to begin using Apple Pay on your new device. Set up and use Apple Pay by opening the Wallet app or Settings menu.
For new iPhone users
How to set up a new iPhone 11 is easy thanks to Apple’s user-friendly, step-by-step prompts. Here’s what you can expect once you power up your device.
- Select your language and country or region from those listed after you see the Apple logo. From here you will have the option to set up Accessibility Options like VoiceOver and Zoom that may help with device activation if you require additional features for easy setup.
- Choose Set Up Manually and select your Wi-Fi network from the options listed. Your device must be connected to a Wi-Fi network and power source for the entirety of your set up.
- Set up Face ID to enable face recognition to unlock your device and make purchases. You’ll be asked to take various images of yourself to maximize the feature’s accuracy. Select Continue and follow the prompts or Set Up Later in Settings to enable Face ID at a later time.
- Now select a six-digit password that you’ll use to access features containing sensitive information like Face ID and Apple Pay. Choose Passcode Options if you’d rather select a four-digit or custom passcode.
- If you’ve completed an Android device backup, select Move Data from Android on the Apps & Data screen. If not, select Set Up as New [Device].
- Sign in with your existing Apple ID or choose Forgot password or don’t have an Apple ID? to create a new one.
- Decide whether or not you’d like to share information from your device with Apple app developers and whether or not you want your device to update iOS automatically on the following screens. You may also choose Install Updates Manually to allow them at your own discretion.
Once you’ve set up the main features of your iPhone 11 you’ll be asked to enable exclusive features like Siri, Screen Time, True Tone and Display Zoom. You may also choose to activate these features later from your Settings. Select Get Started when you’re ready to begin using your brand new device.
Using your new iPhone 11
Now that you know how to set up a new iPhone 11, learn how to take advantage of everything the new design has to offer. Find out how to get around your device with a swipe, customize your Memoji and purchase AppleCare+ for damage coverage and 24/7 priority tech support.