Some more technical stuff about the Nexus for Mac users.
As you know I recently got a new Nexus 7. In my last post I expressed some concern about the backup / restore capabilities of the Nexus. At first I got the feeling that there just basically weren’t any.
But I noticed something in settings about turning on automated backups, and a checkbox for automated restore, so I figured at that point that it must have something.
So I decided to call Google Tech support and ask them and (1) had my first positive experience with Google Tech support and (2) this isn’t as bad as I thought. In fact, it’s pretty good.
In Settings > Google you can get fairly complete detail on what is backed up for each Google account, and when the last backup was for each item. From there you can also force a manual resynch of everything or individual items, and these are restored if you need to do a full factory reset.
If you need to do a full factory reset you can go into Google Play > My Apps and get all your apps restored. You can also send apps to your device from your Mac or PC via Google Play from your computer, which is not something you can do with iTunes. I think that is an interesting feature.
The tech person also said he would send me a followup info summarizing all this, even though he was very clear.
This is fairly equivalent to an iTunes iCloud backup and restore. In addition iTunes offers a complete encrypted backup directly on your computer which does a 100% full restore of everything. The Nexus doesn’t offer something as good as that. But I do feel this is roughly as good as an iTunes iCloud backup.
Some things are not as good – for example you have to do that one extra step to retrieve all your apps from Google Play. And if your app had special data like game scores stored those are not saved for all apps. It is for others, like Google Photos.
But in other cases it is better – like that feature where you can send apps directly from Google Play to your device, which is very convenient and interesting.
I am satisfied with this for now, and no longer feel like I would just be left “hanging there” if I needed to do a factory reset or exchange the device.