Image showing the process of restoring an iPhone from iCloud backup

If you’ve just purchased a new iPhone, gotten a replacement, or need bring back all your information to your iPhone for another reason, restoring from an iCloud Backup is an easy way to pick up where you left off.

To restore an iPhone from an iCloud Backup you’ll need to have had the feature turned on with backups previously being completed. If you’re not sure if you have an iCloud backup or not, follow along and you’ll find out soon enough (alternately you can check on another iOS device in the Settings application or via under Settings → My Devices).

If you’ve already set up your iPhone you’ll need to erase/reset it to be able to access the restore from iCloud Backup option as it is part of the initial setup process.

Keep in mind if there is any new information on your iPhone now that isn’t included in your last backup, complete a new backup if possible. You can also manually save it on a Mac, PC, or device such as SanDisk’s iXpand Drive and bring that information in later (you can only restore an iPhone from 1 iCloud backup).

How to restore iPhone from iCloud Backup

  1. Work through the initial setup screen that includes choosing a language, location, connecting to Wi-Fi, etc.
  2. When you come to the Apps & Data screen, tap on Restore from iCloud Backup
  3. Enter your Apple ID information used for your iCloud account
  4. Tap on the backup you’d like to restore to your iPhone
  5. Enter any other Apple ID account information necessary (if you have content purchased by different Apple IDs you’ll need the login information for each to restore all content)
  6. Follow the prompts and stay connected to Wi-Fi until all your information has been restored

Like the alert in the third image above shows, restoring your information from an iCloud Backup can be quite battery intensive, so plugging in your iPhone is a good idea. Also it is normal for an iPhone to generate more heat than normal during a restore.

Once you see your Home screen, your apps should all be there, but they will be a dark shade until they are loaded in. The image on the far right demonstrates that a 3D Touch (firm press) on an app will provide option to Cancel DownloadPause Download, or Prioritize Download.

The more information you have the longer your restore will take to complete. If you’ve made it this far, hopefully you’ve successfully restored your iPhone from your iCloud Backup. For more help with your Apple devices, check out our how to guide.

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About the Author

Michael Potuck

Michael is an editor for 9to5Mac. Since joining in 2016 he has written more than 3,000 articles including breaking news, reviews, and detailed comparisons and tutorials.