How to Backup Your iPhone with IDrive’s Mobile App

IDrive is an online backup service that can backup desktop computers and mobile devices, all on the same account.  IDrive gives users 5GB free to backup photos, videos, and contacts on your mobile device.  An unlimited backup plan is available for $4.99/year, with a limit of 5 mobile devices.  IDrive customers on the personal or business plans can backup their mobile devices at no additional charge.

In this article, I’ll show you how to backup your iPhone with the IDrive mobile app.

How to Backup Your iPhone with IDrive

  1. Install IDrive onto your iPhone from the App Store.
    Get the IDrive app.
  2. After opening the app, log in to an existing account, or sign up for a free account.
    Log in to your IDrive account, or sign up for a free account.
  3. Tap Backup under the cloud backup section.
    Tap the Backup button.
  4. Tap Backup Now (or tap the Auto Camera Upload slider).
    Tap Backup Now.

Your iPhone’s data will then be uploaded to the IDrive cloud.

Customize the App Settings

You can change the upload quality of photos and videos.  By default, IDrive will upload with the Good quality setting.  I prefer to upload original files, so I chose Original quality.  How much space can you expect to save with the Good quality setting?  One of my photos was reduced to 500KB, from a size of 1.8MB, so it’s pretty significant.

IDrive app settings.

The IDrive app settings.

The Backup Activity log lets you view which files were recently backed up.  You can also set a passcode to open the app, choose to backup on cellular data, and clear the cache.

Restoring Data from IDrive to the iPhone

I haven’t needed to restore my iPhone’s data yet, but it looks like it’s pretty easy to do.  You just tap Access and Restore, choose whatever files you want to restore, then tap Restore.

I was able to download my contacts from the web interface.  The resulting .zip file contained all my contacts in an XML file, along with any JPG photos for my contacts.  I liked that I’m able to download and view my iPhone’s backed up data from any desktop computer.

Is IDrive Better than iCloud?

If there’s one thing I don’t like about backing up my iPhone with IDrive, it’s that the app must be open in order for backups to run.  This is a limitation of iOS, as Apple doesn’t like apps to run in the background.  Apple’s iCloud had no such limitation placed on it.

Hoever, IDrive offers several advantages over iCloud.  Namely, it’s less expensive, at only $5 per year for unlimited mobile backup space.  It also has the option to use a private encryption key, which will appeal to privacy buffs, or those who don’t trust Apple’s security.  IDrive is also cross platform.  You can backup from iOS, and restore to your Android device (or vice versa).

Sign up for IDrive at

Geoff Akerlund

Geoff Akerlund

Geoff Akerlund is the founder and editor-in-chief of He enjoys attending music festivals, whitewater kayaking on the American River, and board game nights in his free time.

Geoff Akerlund