5 Tips for Resetting Your Android Smartphone

If the operating system on your Android smartphone is slowing down, a factory data reset can be a big help. It basically moves out all your apps, cached data and crusty system processes. But what about all your apps, messages, and other important data?  Before you tap that Factory Data Reset button you’ll want to back up any important data such as apps and settings that need to be carried over to the rebooted device. 

Want step-by-step instructions to reboot your device? Keep reading for 5 Tips for Resetting Your Android Smartphone, the fifth installment of our six-part Android Phone Makeover series.

1. Download MyBackUp Pro

For $4.99 on the Android Market, MyBackUp Pro will make an installable copy of everything on your smartphone: pictures, contacts, phone call history, bookmarks from the Browser app, text messages, calendar details, even music playlists and the position of shortcuts on your homescreen. Check out MyBackUp Pro  in the Android Market.

Here’s how you back up files with MyBackUp Pro.

  • On first login, you’ll be asked to provide an email address where you can receive your online username and password.
  • Select Backup.
  • Choose to backup either Applications & Media (apps and photos) or Data (bookmarks, call logs, contacts, Homescreen settings, system settings and text messages).
  • Choose to save backups on the SD card or online and tap OK.

To restore the backups after a reset:

  • Sign back into the phone with the same Google email account.
  • Launch the Android Market.
  • Tap the menu button > My Apps.
  • Tap MyBackUp Pro to re-install and launch the app. MyBackUp Pro should recognize your account via the Gmail address associated with your phone.
  • Select Restore, and choose what to re-install first—Applications & Media or Data.

If you select Applications & Media after the app files are downloaded, you’ll be prompted to navigate to Settings and set the device to allow installation of non-market apps.

If this fails:

  • Go to Settings > Applications.
  • Place a checkmark near Unknown Sources. Now install applications saved during your backup.
  • Select the location you choose to save the information—your SD card or your online MyBackUp Pro account.
  • Wait for all the information to re-install; this will involve re-installing each app.
  • When it’s complete, you’ll be prompted to restart the device. Once your phone starts, your apps, call logs, contacts, homescreen settings and text messages will be exactly where you left them. Good as new.

2. Don’t Forget Built-in Backup
Of course, some information is automatically synced to the Gmail account associated with your phone. So as long as the same email address is assigned to the smartphone after it’s reset, your contacts and calendar will sync without prompting. To make sure your data is synced before you reset the phone, go to Settings > Accounts > Select Account. Then check-off desired fields such as Sync Contacts or Sync Calendar.

3. Get Your Apps Back
Every app you’ve downloaded is listed in the Android Market. Just tap the Menu button and select My Apps to see the list. Then you can re-download the apps to a recently reset device. If you’ve downloaded apps under multiple email accounts, just make sure that each account is added in Settings > Accounts, then Launch the Android Market.

4.  Back up Text Messages for Free
A free Android app in the Market called SMS Backup+ lets you back up text and picture messages, as well as your call log, by saving them allunder a label in Gmail.

5. Reset Your Phone
Once data is saved, you can manually reset your device.

  • Open the Settings app on your phone.
  • Click Privacy > Factory Data Reset.

Bonus: Want an Easier Way to Reboot?
All of the above sound like too much trouble? Use an app called Fast Reboot Pro ($1.49) to reboot your Android smartphone whenever you want, even as often as once a day. The best part? There’s no need to back up your files and re-install them. Check out Fast Reboot Pro in the Android Market.

More Android Phone Makeover tips!

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  1. Aaron Says:

    So clearly a Factory Reset will be the best option but does the Fast Reboot Pro even come close to as clean of a “reboot” as the reset?

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