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How to transfer from an old Samsung phone to a new one with Smart Switch


Upgrading from an old Samsung phone to a new one is made a whole lot simpler by using Samsung’s “Smart Switch” software that’s built into every one of its phones. With a cable and a few taps, you’ll be able to transfer a majority of your phone’s content to the new device and be up and running faster than you’d think.

How to transfer from an old Galaxy phone to a new one with Smart Switch

Make sure both phones are turned on and have a good amount of battery.
Every Samsung phone comes with Smart Switch pre-installed. Locate it in your app drawer.

  • If for whatever reason your phone doesn’t have it, you can download it first.

Open the Smart Switch app on both phones and tap Send data or Receive data on the corresponding device.
Select Cable or Wireless on the sending device to choose how to transfer data.

  • By wireless, the phones will communicate automatically and discover one another, then transfer wirelessly.
  • By cable, plug both phones directly into one another with a USB-C to USB-C cable or a USB-A to USB-C cable with the included OTG adapter in your new phone’s box.

On the old phone, choose exactly what you want to send to the new phone; including messages, apps, images, your home screen setup and more.

After selecting which data you want to send, the phone will let you know how big the transfer will be and how long it will take.

  • If you have several gigabytes of data to transfer, using a cable is greatly preferred to speed up the process.
  • Expect a 5GB+ transfer wirelessly to take over 30 minutes.


Tap Send and let the transfer occur. For the best (and fastest) results, leave both phones alone during the transfer.

Smart Switch isn’t a comprehensive backup and restore program that will directly copy everything to the new phone, but it’s a good way to fill in the many gaps left by the basic backup and restore system connected to your Google account. Don’t expect Smart Switch to transfer all of your individual app data or copy over every bit of information, but it does a lot of the little things that you’ll appreciate later when you’re just using your phone rather than tinkering with settings.

Expand your universe with great Galaxy accessories

Anker Powerline+ USB-C to C 2.0 Cable


$16 at Amazon

If you can plan ahead, a nice new USB-C to USB-C cable will let you transfer data between Samsung phones with minimal wait. You can then use it as a charging cable going forward.

Samsung EVO Select 256GB microSD card


$50 at Amazon

Expand your phone’s internal storage and make room for more photos, music, movies, or more apps with this high-speed, high-capacity card.

Anker PowerPort Qi Charging Pad


$22 at Amazon

This affordable 10W fast wireless charging pad is thinner on your desk or nightstand than most chargers on the market — even most of Samsung’s — and a ring of LED lights makes it easy to tell if your S10 is indeed charging on it.


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