What Happens if I Delete iCloud Backup on My iPhone?

If you delete your iCloud Backup, nothing will happen to the data or information on your device immediately. However, if you lose your phone or it breaks somewhere down the line, you could permanently lose all of your apps, data, and settings without a backup.

Over my many years of owning iPhones, there have been several instances where my storage space has become full. This could be the storage on your device itself or even the storage in the cloud.

If you are running low on iCloud storage space in particular, you might think to delete your iCloud Backup, as it takes up a lot of room. But what happens if you delete the iCloud Backup on your phone? 

Keep reading to find out.

Key Takeaways

  • Nothing will instantly happen if you delete an iCloud Backup. All of the data on your device will remain and everything should work and appear as normal. However, you put yourself at risk of future data loss without a backup present.
  • If you want to delete an iCloud Backup, you need to go to Settings > Your Name > iCloud > iCloud Backup, locate and click on the backup, and then tap Delete & Turn Off Backup.
  • I recommend you create a new backup sooner rather than later to protect yourself in case of a lost or damaged phone. This can be done by going to Settings > Your Name > iCloud > iCloud Backup, and making sure it is turned on.

What Will Happen When I Delete an iCloud Backup

In general, nothing much will happen as soon as you delete the iCloud Backup. The data on your iPhone, including apps, photos, and more, will all remain untouched. Remember, you are only deleting the backup, not the data itself.

However, deleting your iCloud backup leaves you unprotected in the future. If you lose your phone or it breaks, you won’t have a backup to restore from. This means you will lose all of the data that you had on the lost device.

How to Delete an iCloud Backup

If you are aware of the risks and still want to delete your iCloud Backup for one reason or another, the process is quite simple to do and won’t take more than a minute or so.

You just need to go to Settings > Your Name > iCloud > iCloud Backup. Once there, click on the backup and then press Delete & Turn Off Backup. Once it finishes, that backup will no longer be there.

Creating a New iCloud Backup

While deleting a backup won’t do a ton right now, you never want to be left without one if something happens to your device. So after you delete an iCloud backup, I recommend that you remember to create a new one soon so you are protected from future data loss.

To create a new iCloud Backup, go to Settings > Your Name > iCloud > iCloud Backup and make sure that “Back Up This iPhone” is toggled on.

If you toggle it on, your device will automatically create an updated backup once daily, when your phone is locked, plugged in, and connected to Wifi. You can also manually back up your iPhone immediately by clicking Back Up Now.

In order to successfully back up your phone, you need to ensure you have enough iCloud storage available. If not, your existing backup will not be lost/deleted, but you will be unable to update the backup until you have the space.

Final Thoughts

While deleting an iCloud Backup won’t hurt any of your data right now, it can leave you vulnerable in the future if your iPhone breaks or is lost.

I hope this guide has not only helped you learn what happens if you delete an iCloud Backup from your device, but also how to do it, and how you can go about creating another if you want.

Is there something you feel like I should have mentioned in this guide but didn’t? If so, let me know in a comment.

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