Mobility

How to migrate SMS messages from an iOS device to Android using iSMS2Droid

If you've switched from iOS to Android and you need your SMS messages transferred, your best bet is iSMS2Droid. Jack Wallen shows you how to port your messages using the app and an iTunes backup.

This is an update to the original article, How to migrate SMS messages from an iPhone to an Android device.

So you've decided to migrate from the iOS platform to Android. Everything has gone smoothly, but you have a number of SMS messages on your iOS device that you require on your new phone. How do you manage that? You install iSMS2droid and use it in conjunction with an iTunes backup to easily get those message from iOS to Android.

Let me show you how.

Backing up from iTunes

This is the most time-consuming step, because you have to perform a full backup of your iPhone using iTunes. Here's how:

  1. Open iTunes on your Mac or PC
  2. Connect your iPhone to the computer
  3. From the main iTunes page, check This computer for the backup location and click Back Up Now
  4. Allow the backup to complete

Once the backup is complete, the files will be located in one of these two locations:

  • Windows: \Users\USERNAME\AppData\Roaming\Apple Computer\MobileSync\Backup\ (where USERNAME is the actual username)
  • Mac: ~/Library/Application Support/MobileSync/Backup/

Within either of these folders, you'll see one or more subfolders named with random strings of characters. Locate the folder with the most recent timestamp. Change into that folder, and then look for the following two files:

  • 3d0d7e5fb2ce288813306e4d4636395e047a3d28—your SMS messages
  • 5a4935c78a5255723f707230a451d79c540d2741—your call logs

Copy those files to the Android device in question, or to a cloud location, such as Google Drive, or Dropbox. If you copy the files to a cloud solution, you'll need to make sure to download them to your Android device before continuing on.

Install iSMS2Droid

Now we need to install iSMS2Droid. To do this, follow these steps:

  1. Open up the Google Play Store on your Android device
  2. Search for iSMS2Droid
  3. Locate and tap the entry by Jan Grewe
  4. Tap Install
  5. Allow the installation to complete

You should now see a launcher for the app on your homescreen, your App Drawer, or both. Tap to launch the tool. From the main window ( Figure A), tap the Import Message button.

Figure A

Figure A

The iSMS2Droid main window.

At this point, you will be prompted to temporarily change the default SMS app to iSMS2Droid ( Figure B).

Figure B

Figure A

Changing the default SMS app.

Once you've done that, allow iSMS2Droid the requested permissions to access photos, media, and files, and then navigate to the location housing the downloaded backup files. Select your file and when prompted, select Import All Messages. Depending on how many messages you have to import, this can take some time. Do note, you can continue using your phone while the messages import. When the import is complete, you will be asked if you want switch back to your original messaging app—make sure to do this.

With the SMS message imported, you can then go back and import your call list—if applicable—in the same manner.

All done

Congratulations, your SMS messages are finally on your Android device. I would suggest once the import is complete and you've made sure the import was successful that you delete iSMS2Droid, as well as the files from the iTunes backup from your device. You won't need them again, and both app and files will just be taking up space.

Also See

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Image: Jack Wallen

About Jack Wallen

Jack Wallen is an award-winning writer for TechRepublic and Linux.com. He’s an avid promoter of open source and the voice of The Android Expert. For more news about Jack Wallen, visit his website jackwallen.com.

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