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Take a step back for a minute and observe smartphone users. You will likely see numerous iPhones and Android devices, and even a few Windows Phones. The thing you may also notice is that most users likely won’t switch to another system. However, from time-to-time, new features and phones tempt a certain number to make the switch and move from say an iPhone to a Windows Phone, for example.
If you are thinking of switching from an iPhone to a Windows Phone, here is a brief guide on how you can migrate your important information and tools over to your new phone.
Switch your email
Chances are high that you linked an email account to your iPhone. Regardless of the type of account you have – Gmail, Outlook, iCloud, etc., moving email is pretty easy. In fact, Windows Phone allows you to link almost any email account. Here’s how:
Tap the Settings icon on your Windows Phone.
Select Email + accounts followed by Next.
Tap Add an account along with the account you want to add.
Enter your email address and password.
Tap Next, select Email only followed by Sign in.
The phone will sync with your account and your email should start showing in the email tile on the main screen. If you use other accounts, say a Google account, you can sync these in the same way.
Migrate your contacts
Contacts are an important part of any phone, and you probably want to take them with you, or migrate them over to the new system. You have a couple of options to get your contacts onto your new Windows Phone. The method you use should reflect where you store your contacts.
Contacts linked with an online account – If you have set up your iPhone to sync contacts with an online account like Google or Outlook.com, you can simply follow the steps in the email section above and select Email, contacts, and calendar. Your contacts should show up within a couple of minutes.
Contacts stored on your iPhone – If you have contacts stored on your iPhone, but not linked to an online account, the steps to get them off may be a little complicated. The easiest way is to export the contacts to Outlook on your computer. You can do this by:
Plugging your phone into your computer and opening iTunes.
Selecting your iPhone in iTunes.
Clicking Info followed by Sync Contacts with and selecting Outlook.
If you use Exchange (which is likely at work), sign into your Windows Phone using that account, and your contacts will be migrated over automatically. If you don’t use Exchange, follow the instructions on the Microsoft site here.
Contacts stored on your computer – The easiest way to migrate your contacts from your computer to your phone is through Outlook. Sign into Outlook using a Microsoft account, then drag your contacts from Outlook into the account and sign into your phone using the same account. Your contacts will automatically transfer over. If you have an older version of Outlook, try the Hotmail connector, (instructions on how to transfer files are below the download link).
Import important documents
If you have files that you would like to access on your phone the easiest option is to download these onto your computer first by connecting your phone to iTunes and transferring them off. If these are spreadsheets, presentations or word processing files you should upload them to your SkyDrive.
When the files are on your computer, plug your Windows Phone in using a USB cable. The computer should recognize this and show you a window with options of what you can do with your phone. Select Explore Files and a window will open with the phone’s file structure. Double-click on Documents. Then, open the folder where you downloaded the documents to, in another window. Simply drag the files from this folder to Documents and they will be available on your phone.
Get your apps
At the writing of this article, there is no easy way to transfer your apps over from the iPhone to the Windows Phone. You will have to go into the Windows Store and search for the apps you use. The good news is that many popular apps are available.
Move your SIM card/phone number
Moving to a new phone system can sometimes be confusing, especially in relation to SIM cards. The vast majority of iPhones use micro SIMs, while Windows Phones use regular or micro. If your Windows Phone uses the same size of SIM as your iPhone, you should be able to pull it out of the iPhone and switch it over to your new phone without a problem. If your new device uses a different sized SIM, you will have to go to your mobile provider and ask them for a new card.
The one thing to be careful with is if your iPhone is on a contract. Some mobile carriers have been known to lock the SIM to the device, meaning it won’t work if you switch phones. You will have to go into the mobile carrier and pay them to switch.
In general, moving from an iPhone to a Windows Phone is a painless affair that shouldn’t take a long time, especially if you already sync your contacts, calendar and email online. If you are making the move and have further questions, please give us a call. We are happy to help.
Published on 4th July 2013 by Jeanne DeWitt.