Every year, over four million people are switching from iOS to Android or the other way around. While some things are easier to migrate between the two ecosystems, moving Whatsapp data from iOS to Android is not as simple as we’d like it to be.
The reason behind this shortcoming is an incompatibility between the two proprietary backup technologies that Google and Apple are using. Android backs all data through Google Drive while Apple uses iCloud to perform backup chores, and that includes backing up WhatsApp’s chat history.
Instead of having its own cloud capabilities for backup purposes, WhatsApp relies on the default backup service of the OS it’s running on – iCloud on iOS and Drive on Android. Users can seamlessly transfer chat history, contacts and media from one iOS to another, but there’s no official way to migrate Whatsapp data from iOS to Android. The same can be said about moving Whatsapp data from Android to iOS.
Although Google has plans on bringing Drive to iOS, there’s no official launch date yet and I can’t see Apple embracing a technology that is a direct competitor to iCloud. Until the two tech giants work out a solution, everyday users are left with no direct way to transfer Whatsapp Chat History from iOS to Android.
Despite what most similar articles claim, you can’t copy WhatsApp chats from an iPhone to Android via WhatsApp’s Chat Backup. If you’re looking for a solution that actually works, you’ve come to the right place.
Follow the steps down below to copy all WhatsApp data from iOS to Android. We will use a paid app, but I will include a link to the lite version just in case you’re not prepared to spend any money.
How to Migrate Whatsapp Data from iPhone to Android
- Connect the iPhone to your computer and launch iTunes. Make sure your phone gets recognized.
Note: If you don’t have iTunes installed on your system, download it from here.
- Click on your device to open the iPhone view. Scroll down to Backups and under Automatically Back up select This computer. At this point, it’s very important to leave Encrypt iPhone backup UNTICKED, otherwise the app we will use below to migrate Whatsapp data won’t be able to extract from the backup. Click on Back Up Now when you’re all set.
Note: It will take over 10 minutes for the backup to be created. Your PC might freeze, but make sure you don’t disconnect your device during this period.
- Visit this link and download the latest version of Phone Backup Browser. Select the Downloads tab and click on the latest version of the software to download it.
- Once the download is complete, extract the zip file somewhere you can easily access it like your desktop.
- Double-click on iphonebackupbrowser.exe and wait until the software launches. It will take some time the first time it launches.
Note: If you get an Unhandled exception error, make sure the iTunes backup is in C:\Users\*YourName*\AppData\Roaming\Apple.
- Once the software is up and running, click on the drop down button at the top and select the backup you have just created.
- Click on the three-dot entry under Display Name. You’ll see a list with options populate down below.
- Now from the newly populated list, scroll down and click on ChatStorage.sqlite. This is the file that has all the text backup of your WhatsApp conversations from your iPhone.
- With ChatStorage.sqlite selected, make your way to the top-right section of the screen and click the extract icon. It will extract your Whatsapp chat conversations to C:\temp.
- Now to extract the media backup of your WhatsApp conversations, under Display Name scroll down and click on net.whatsapp.WhatsApp. If you don’t wish to extract the WhatsApp media backup, skip right to step 14.
- Now move over to the section below and click on the first entry that begins with Library/Media/.
- With the first media file selected, hold down the Shift Key and scroll down to the last media file and select it. This will select all the media files from the backup you previously created.
- With all the media files selected, click on the extract icon (located in the top-right section of the screen) to extract all your WhatsApp media files to C:\temp.
Note: Depending on how many media files you have in your backup, iPhone Backup Browser might become unresponsive while the request is resolved. Don’t freak if your system hangs or becomes unresponsive and do not try to force close the software. You’ll know it’s complete when iPhone Backup Browser becomes responsive again.
- Once the process is complete, go to Local Disk (C:) > Temp > *YourName* iPhone’s and check to see if the extracted files are there.
- Now connect your Android phone to your PC and make sure the connection mode is set to File Transfer (MTP) on your Android.
- Once your Android device gets recognized, go to This PC > *YourAndroid* and double-click on Internal Storage.
- Copy and paste the two folders from Local Disk (C:) > Temp > *YourName* iPhone’s to This PC > *YourPhone* > Internal Storage. File explorer will ask you to resolve some folder replacing conflicts, agree to all of them. Once the transfer is complete, disconnect your Android from the PC.
- On your phone, download and install Wazzap Migrator from Google Play Store. The app used to have a Lite version, but the author has since removed it from Google Play. The Pro version costs $2.99, but it will also let you extract the media files as well. If you have the money, I suggest you buy the Pro version to support the developer.
Note: If you don’t want to spend any money you can still get the Lite version, but you’ll have to do it from outside Google Play. Just keep in mind that the Lite version won’t let you extract the media files, just the chat back up.
To avoid catching any malware, I suggest downloading the Lite version through the Mobogenie store. It’s malware free, but it will quickly fill your device with adware, so be sure to uninstall it as soon as you’re done with Wazzap Migrator. Here’s a quick guide on installing the Lite version of Wazzap Migrator:
Visit this link from your phone and tap the Download button.
While the file is downloading, go to Settings > Security & privacy > Aditional settings and enable Unknown Sources.
Open the .apk file you’ve just downloaded an hit Install. Don’t worry if it says Mobogenie, Wazzapp Migrator Lite is bundeled with the Mobogenie package. It’s just a marketing scheme to force users into installing their store app.
If, for some reason the Wazzap Migrator Lite doesn’t install along with the Mobogenie app, search the store for “Wazzap Migrator Lite” and tap on Install.
After Wazzapp Locator Lite is installed on your Android device, you can uninstall Mobogenie. It’s also recommended to return to Settings > Security & Privacy > Aditional settings and disable Unknown Sources.
- Open Wazzap Migrator Pro or Wazzap Migrator Lite. If the steps above were done correctly, it will automatically detect the database. Tap on the Play icon and then tap on Yes to allow the app to search for the ChatStorage.sqlite file.
If you bought the Pro version, it might show an error saying “iPhone’s Media folder not found”. This is perfectly normal, just tap the three dot icon in the top right corner and tap on Select media folder.
From there, tap on Whole System, scroll down and tap on net.whatsapp.WhatsApp. With the folder selected, tap on Choose Library.
- Now that everything is in place, tap on the Play button again and wait for the app to create a backup file that is readable by the Android version of WhatsApp.
Note: Depending on how big your iPhone backup is, this operation might take over 2 hours.
- After you get the “Conversion Successful” message, go to Google Play Store and install the official version of WhatsApp.
- Open Whatsapp and verify your number.
- After your phone is verified, you should see a prompt saying a local backup has been found. Tap on Restore and wait for the process to complete.
I know it was a long and tedious process, but now is finally over. You should be able to see your all your Whatsapp chats and media files bought brought the Pro version). Although this process is quite complicated, it’s still the only applicable and cost effective way to migrate Whatsapp data from iOS to Android.