So your computer died and you want to backup the data on your iPhone?

First I want to say I receive nothing from the product I'm about to do a very brief write up on. The reason I'm posting this is I was reading TUAW, one of my favorite news sites, and saw a letter from a reader that caught my eye. This reader had an iPhone, and recently had their computer destroyed in a natural disaster. They purchased a new computer but wondered how would they get their valuable personal data from the iPhone to their computer. They couldn't just click sync, because that would just replace what was on their iPhone with what was in their new iTunes library (nothing).

So this product can certainly benefit everyone out there. You don't need to be jailbroken to use it, and you can even download a trial version of it for free. It will let you test every function it offers, it's just limited as to how much data it will let you transfer off your iPhone until you purchase the full version.

The program is called PhoneView and its made by Ecamm Network, who is no stranger to the iPhone. In fact if you remember way back when, right around the same time we learned how to jailbreak the original iPhone, they came up with a program called iPhone Drive which allowed you to store files on your iPhone from your computer. Macworld reviewed this program back in 2008 and the reviewer rated the program as very good. It works on both PPC and intel-based Macs.

What can be retrieved? Anything stored on the iPhone in disk mode, address book contacts, notes, call logs, SMS/MMS logs and attachments, recently viewed URLs and bookmarks, voicemails, music, videos, audiobooks, podcasts, ringtones, photos and voice memos.

The following screen shots (these are only a sampling of some the features) are from Ecamm's website. Note the different buttons at the top of each window. Depending on what section you are in you will get different options, like send to iTunes, send to iPhoto, et cetera. I tested every feature and everything worked!

The contacts tab allows you to export to your desktop or export directly into your address book.

Music files can be sent to the desktop or directly to your iTunes library. You can even preview songs here.

Photos can be sent to your desktop or directly to your iPhoto library.

You can read Ecamm's detailed instructions here.

Return to top of page