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How to transfer WhatsApp conversations to new devices: the easy way

WhatsApp is one of the most popular communication tools on the planet. But if you get a new phone and transfer your WhatsApp account to it, your old messages don't automatically come with you. Thankfully we're here to help. This tutorial explains how to transfer WhatsApp conversations to a new device, so you can pick up your chats where you left off.  

Note: Since I first wrote this article, WhatsApp has been slowly updating the app to a version that includes automatic Google Drive backups, which makes the process of transferring your WhatsApp chat history between phones even easier. You simply tap the trio of dots at the top left of the screen and go to Settings > Chats and calls > Chat backup. 

From here, you can back up manually, or set it to automatically back up as regularly as you like. When WhatsApp is reinstalled, it will prompt you to recover your chats and multimedia from Google Drive. 

whats app backup chat
The ability to make Google Drive backups in the latest version of WhatsApp makes life easier. / © ANDROIDPIT

If you've yet to receive the Google Drive WhatsApp update, it's still reasonably easy to create a backup and move it to your new phone. Simply proceed as follows:

  • Open the Settings menu of WhatsApp, tap on Chats and calls and then tap Chat backup.
whats app chat backup
Tap the three dots (options) button. Go to Settings > Chats and calls > Chat backup. / © ANDROIDPIT
  • Connect your smartphone to your PC via USB cable, and navigate to the internal memory of the device to the folder WhatsApp / Database. This is where all the backup files are saved with a date. They will look something like "msgstore-2013-05-29.db.crypt". Copy the file with the latest creation date (it will have a different name from the automatic backups created, mine is "msgstore.db.crypt8") onto your PC in an easy to find location (such as your desktop). 
  • Install WhatsApp on your new device but do not start the app!

  • Connect your new device to the PC via USB. Because you've already downloaded WhatsApp onto your new handset, the folder WhatsApp / Databases should now exist. If not, you can manually create a new Databases folder in the WhatsApp folder. 

androidpit whatsapp databases conversations
You can use a folder browsing app like File Commander to navigate to your internal storage on your phone (above), just like you can on your PC. / © ANDROIDPIT
  • Copy your WhatsApp conversation backup file into this folder.

Now start WhatsApp on your new phone and verify your phone number. You should now get a notification that a message backup was found. Just tap Restore, and you're done. After a few seconds, all of your messages should have appeared on your new device.

Let us know in the comments if you have any trouble. 


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  • I backed up my whatsapp chats. Then i formatted my phone(android). Now if i reinstall the app, i'll be able to retrieve my chats?

  • I was trying to transfer WhatsApp messages from iPhone to my Android and found this guide but unfortunately it talks about transferring WhatsApp chat from one Android to Another which is not that difficult. Anyway, I spend few more hours and finally found this solution to transfer WhatsApp messages from an iPhone to Android :

    It did the job for me. In case you're looking to transfer WhatsApp chat from Android to iPhone, you might find this useful:

  • i have bought new lenovo phone. i installed whatsapp on my new device, however i am not able to retrieve my whatsapp msg of last two months. i even copied complete whatsapp folder from previous device, but still not able to retrieve the last two months msgs after reinstalling the whatsapp on new device. pls help.

    • I had the exact same issue when I was changing from one Android phone to another and the link here worked for me and did the magic and I am now able to see ALL my chats and respective messages:

      "To restore a less recent local backup

      Your phone will store up to the last 7 days worth of local backup files (Google Drive will only have the most recent). If you wish to restore a local backup which is not the most recent, you will need to do the following:

      Download a file manager. Here are some choices: File Managers and Explorers.
      - In the File Manager, navigate to sdcard/WhatsApp/Databases. If your data is not stored on the SD card, you may see internal storage or main storage instead of sdcard.
      - Rename the backup file you wish to restore from msgstore-YYYY-MM-DD.1.db.crypt12 to msgstore.db.crypt12. It is possible that your earlier backup may have been on an earlier protocol, such as crypt9 or crypt10. Do not change the number of the crypt extension.
      -Uninstall WhatsApp.
      - Install WhatsApp.
      - Tap Restore when asked

      Good Luck!

  • What would I do if I need to transfer from iOS to Android?

    • An easy way to transfer whatsapp conversations between iOS and Android is by using a program called Backuptrans Android iPhone WhatsApp Transfer. You just need to connect your devices to the program on computer via USB and then click a "Transfer“ button. It is a paid tool but works like a charm.

  • What happens if Moved my files from my old phone to this folder after already installing and running whatsapp on my new phone. Is there a way to restore the files still. Do I uninstall whatsapp and reinstall it? and if I do uninstall won't the folder the back up files I transfered to the folder disappear as well. should I back them up in another folder, uninstall and then reinstall whatsapp, without running it, move my files to the folder then open whatsapp? for the moment I have copied these files to google drive. if I uninstall whatsapp and reinstall will it restore the files from google drive. I am skeptical because i didn't get a prompt from google drive to replace old files with the same names, so is there a specific whatsapp back up folder on google drive I need to copy these files to? Desperate for help.

  • How to transfer chats from iOS to Android without root?

  • I successfully transferred the chat from Samsung to Motorola, but the images and videos do not show-up...I mean, when i click on the images and videos in a chat, it says that "Sorry, this media file doesn't exist on your SD card."...but the data is there in my new mobile...i copied it from the old phone...

  • Im facing a problem which is when I press backup in whatsapp sittings , it first undergo a local backup nd then when it have to back up the chats on my google drive it doesnt load , the loading bar wont even start loading.....pleas any help !!

  • Process to restore chats in the latest version of WhatsApp is bit different.

  • I downloaded whatsapp on my new phone but a whatsapp folder is not created. Where do I create the database folder? Or should I create a whatsapp folder too?

  • So if someone know how to transfer WhatsApp messages from iOS to Android?

    • @WillaFoster Well if you do own an iPhone, I believe there's a program on iTunes called: iPhone Data Recovery? Run it and it should work to transfer the whatsapp data over to Android like a file. Google it if you're unsure, sweetie.

  • This article needs to be updated a bit.

  • Abd recc 3 months ago Link to comment

    I have installed Whatsapp in my new phone and just started using it without restoring the old messages from my old phone. My old phone contains the crypt9 file. How do I merge the old messages from my old phone to the new messages in my new phone without affecting the newer messages?

  • K Raval 3 months ago Link to comment

    Brilliant it worked able to transfer my chat from s3mini. To J5

  • Was looking for how to use the data in the WhatsApp files. Found this. Works like a charm!

  • I guess most of the folks are finding it useful.

  • Hi, is there any way i can do this without my number verification as i am in another country and cannot access my sim number..

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