Selling Your Android Phone? Here’s how to reset it

If you are planning to buy a new smartphone and want to sell the old one, do not forget to erase sensitive information. We explain briefly how you backup and delete Android smartphone data, and what to look for.

1. Backup your data

A smartphone is personal, so undoubtedly there is much information available that you want to keep. Just look at your contacts. These can sync with your Google Account. You do this by going to Settings. Then tap General, scroll down and press Accounts & Synchronization and Google. Under Accounts, you’ll see your Gmail account, tap it.

There will appear a list of data you can sync with your Google Account. Press the components that you want to sync, and then check your Google account if it worked. You can also manually save your contacts on your SIM card, even though it has limited storage capabilities.

2. Exporting Gmail contacts

It can be useful to export your contacts to Gmail in a separate file, so you have a backup of that data. This is especially useful if you switch to Android, but there are more times when it can be useful. And it is fortunately very simple.

Sign into Gmail, then click on the top left on Contacts. Select More, and then click Export. You can now select which group you want to export, or perhaps all of your contacts. Choose Google CSV to a file that can be read by Gmail, and Outlook CSV to create a backup that you can transfer to Outlook, Live Mail and other platforms. Click Export, select Save on Disk and press OK.

3. Backup photos

You shoot occasionally a picture with your phone, so make sure you save those photos before your reset your smartphone. This can be done in different ways, for example by connection your phone with a USB cable to your PC.

Open the folder of your phone and go to the camera folder where you stored the photos. This varies by smartphone. Select all the pictures and place them in a folder on your computer. Remove them now on your phone.

However, Google itself has a great way to make a backup of your photos, with its own Photos app. If you’ve enabled this, the app automatically backups your photos in Google Drive, which you can pick up again on any device. So you have nothing to worry about, and you will not lose your photos.

4. Remove your SIM card and SD

It’s very simple to remove your SD card and SIM card, but especially the SD card is sometimes overlooked. Do not forget to remove it from your phone before you reset your smartphone to factory settings. Also, remove your SIM card from the phone before you proceed.

5. Return to factory settings

The full reset of your smartphone is extremely important. You not only reset your account and call data, you will also ensure that no sensitive information can be extracted from the phone. For example online banking, you do not want that the buyer can find your login details. The same applies to your Skype or Facebook account. By resetting your phone to factory settings, all stored data will be deleted. This also removes your telephone connection to Google.

You put your Android smartphone to factory settings by going to Settings. Go to General, scroll down and look under Personal in Backup & Reset. Press Factory settings and tap Reset phone. Clear Select All and confirm your choice. Your smartphone will reset and you can now safely sell your phone.