WhatsApp is a tremendously useful way to keep in touch with people all over the world for free. There is a rather large problem that users can encounter though, and that is when moving onto a new phone by default their conversations don’t come with them. This is due to the way the app stores content locally rather than on web servers. If you still have your old phone to hand, and haven’t switched from Android to iOS or vice versa, then it’s still possible to salvage those old chats and move them safely to a new home. In this guide we’ll take you through the short process of copying and restoring your digital missives.

See also: How to use WhatsApp Web

How to back up WhatsApp messages, how to restore WhatsApp messages to a new phone: iPhone

There are a few different ways to keep your conversations on your iPhone, but the easiest is by using iCloud backup. To do this you’ll need to take your old handset and go to WhatsApp Settings, Chats, Chat Backup and then tap Backup Now.

restore whatsapp chat history

On your new handset, reinstall WhatsApp, confirm your phone number (which has to be the same as the one used on your old phone) and you will be prompted to restore your chat history. Agree to this and your backup should be installed, replete with your conversations. It’s also worth going back to the settings and enabling the Auto Backup feature now, so you’ll be good to go when you upgrade to your next iPhone in a couple of years time. Also see: How to back up iPhone

How to back up WhatsApp messages, how to restore WhatsApp messages to a new phone: Android

The easiest way to back up and restore WhatsApp messages between Android phones is to use Google Drive, since it's a free app that's available to all Android phones. You can also use an SD card if one is installed in your phone, but do so only if that SD card can be inserted to your new phone also. 

You will want to ensure you have Google Drive installed (and logged into the same Google account) on both new and old Android phones. 

Now open WhatsApp on the old Android phone, tap the three dots in the top right corner and choose Settings.

Select Chats, then Chat backup. Select Back Up to back up your WhatsApp chat history to Google Drive.

Now, on the new phone, verify your WhatsApp account with your phone number. You will automatically be prompted to restore your WhatsApp messages from a Google Drive backup. Select the most recent backup and your messages will be restored in the background. Also see: How to back up Android

restore whatsapp chat history