About missing information after you restore your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch with iCloud Backup

Did you notice missing information after you restored your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch with iCloud Backup? Learn more. 

Things you can check

  • Make sure that you correctly restored your iOS device from iCloud Backup. When you sign in to iCloud, it's not the same as when you restore from iCloud Backup. Learn how to restore from iCloud Backup
  • Make sure that iCloud Backup includes the kind of information that you’re missing. If you restore an iPad from an iPhone backup or vice versa, some data won’t restore.
  • If an app asks for your Apple ID password during the restore process, make sure that you enter it. Some apps and services, like the App Store, need your password before they can restore purchased content. If you purchased content on multiple Apple IDs, enter the password for each Apple ID when prompted.
  • If the restore process takes a long time to finish, or if you receive an error message, learn what to do.
  • You can also check to see if you have any backups on your computer that may contain the data that’s missing.
  • Sometimes the restore process may look complete, but your device is still downloading information in the background. To check this, tap Settings > [your name] > iCloud > iCloud Backup. If your device is still being restored, you see “This [device] is currently being restored and will automatically back up when it is done.”

    iPhone showing iCloud Backup turned on

Want to learn more? Keep reading to discover what’s included in iCloud Backup.

About your apps, music, movies, and TV shows

iCloud Backup includes information about your purchase history from the Apple Music app, Apple TV app, Apple Books app, Apple Podcasts app, and the App Store. After you restore from iCloud Backup, your purchased media automatically downloads again from Apple services. Availability of redownloads varies by country or region. Previous purchases may be unavailable when they've been refunded or aren't available in the store anymore. Some previously purchased movies may not be available for redownload from Apple TV.

For some third-party apps, you may need to download data from the app provider again.

If you used iTunes Match to download previously matched or uploaded songs, albums, or playlists to your device, sync your device on a computer that has your content to recover media that wasn't purchased from the iTunes Store or isn't available through iTunes Match.

To recover content purchased with a different Apple ID, sign in with the Apple ID associated with that purchase.

About your photos

When you use iCloud Photos, your photos and videos automatically upload to iCloud. They aren’t included in your nightly backup. After you restore your device from iCloud Backup, stay connected to Wi-Fi so that your photos and videos can begin to download.

If you haven’t turned on iCloud Photos, iCloud Backup may include photos and videos in your Photos or Camera Roll. Not sure if iCloud Photos was turned on when you made the backup? After you restore your device, check Settings > [your name] > iCloud > Photos. If iCloud Photos is turned on, then the photos were stored in iCloud Photos.

If the photos and videos were included in the backup, they’ll download to your iOS device in the background when you restore. Stay connected to Wi-Fi until the process finishes. The time it takes to restore depends on the size of your backup and the speed of your Wi-Fi network.

Learn more about what's included in iCloud Backup and how to sync photos from a computer.

About iCloud Drive

If you use iCloud Drive, your documents aren't included in iCloud Backup. They remain updated and available across your devices because they live in iCloud. If you want to save your iWork files manually, you can save them to your Mac or PC.

If you can't find your iWork documents after you restore your device, go to iCloud.com and check in the iCloud Drive app.

About your Calendar and Contact data

When Calendar and Contact information restores from iCloud Backup, your settings and old data restore first. Then, iCloud pushes your updated Calendar and Contact data to your device, overwriting the old data. This update happens automatically and usually occurs before you notice the old data.

About your Mail and Notes data

Since your Mail already lives in iCloud, it isn't included in iCloud Backup. iCloud Backup does include the settings for your iCloud email account and any other email accounts on your device. After you restore from iCloud Backup, iCloud and your other email providers replace your available email messages so you can pick up where you left off.

If you set up your device to store Notes in iCloud, iCloud sends those notes to your device after the restore process finishes. To find storage options for Notes in iOS 10.3 or later, tap Settings > [your name] > iCloud.

Notes data stored by a third-party service (like Microsoft Exchange) isn't backed up to iCloud. Contact the provider of that service for information about how to retrieve your data.

About your Messages and Voice Memos data

With Messages in iCloud and Voice Memos in iCloud*, your text messages and voice recordings automatically upload to iCloud. They aren’t included in your backup. After you restore your device from iCloud Backup, stay connected to Wi-Fi so that your text messages and voice recordings can download.

If you turn off Messages in iCloud, your text messages and attachments no longer upload automatically, but they save in your next iCloud Backup and download in the background when you restore. Stay connected to Wi-Fi until the process finishes. The time it takes to restore depends on the size of your backup and the speed of your Wi-Fi.

Sometimes, if you restore a device from a backup of another kind of device, your Messages and Voice Memos won’t restore. For example, if you use an iPad backup to restore an iPhone, your Messages and Voice Memos may not appear on the iPhone.

If your information is still missing after you restore, you can try to restore from a different backup in iCloud or on your computer. Always back up your current data on your computer before you try to restore from iCloud Backup.

*If you use iOS 11 or earlier, or macOS High Sierra or earlier, your Voice Memos are included in iCloud Backup, not iCloud.

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