How to Prevent iPhone Auto Backup

by Avery Martin
Sean Gallup/Getty Images News/Getty Images

The iPhone can automatically back up your app data, email, photos, video and other related content in two ways -- iCloud or iTunes. Turning off the automatic backup feature can help save storage space on your computer or your iCloud account. ITunes still makes a backup of your system before you upgrade to a new version of iOS and when syncing your device to iTunes. However, you can prevent the automated syncing option to prevent iTunes from backing up each time you connect your iPhone to your computer.

Disable iTunes Backup

Step 1

Launch iTunes on your computer. You don't need to connect your iPhone.

Step 2

Click the "Edit" menu and choose "Preferences" if you use Windows. Select "iTunes" and click "Preferences" if you use a Mac.

Step 3

Click the "Devices" option.

Step 4

Uncheck the option to "Prevent iPods, iPhones, and iPads from Syncing Automatically. Click "OK."

Step 5

Connect your iPhone to your computer, if you haven't yet. Click the "This Computer" option in the Backups Section.

Step 6

Uncheck the option to "Automatically Sync When This iPhone is Connected."

Click the "Apply" button. Your iPhone won't make backups automatically until you manually sync your iPhone with iTunes.

Disable iCloud Backups

Step 1

Tap the "Settings" app on your iPhone.

Step 2

Select "iCloud" from the list of options.

Step 3

Tap "Storage & Backup."

Set the "iCloud Backup" toggle switch to the "Off" position.


  • Information in this article applies to iOS 6 and iTunes 11. It may vary slightly or significantly with other versions or products.


Photo Credits

  • Sean Gallup/Getty Images News/Getty Images

About the Author

Avery Martin holds a Bachelor of Music in opera performance and a Bachelor of Arts in East Asian studies. As a professional writer, she has written for, Samsung and IBM. Martin contributed English translations for a collection of Japanese poems by Misuzu Kaneko. She has worked as an educator in Japan, and she runs a private voice studio out of her home. She writes about education, music and travel.

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