How to Recover Data from a Phone with a Broken Screen

Your fancy smartphone with the rugged rubber case? Well, it’s fallen, and by some sort of bad luck, it’s angled itself in a way to shatter your screen perfectly. Even the most cautious mobile phone owners may face this issue. While you can easily replace the phone with the latest tech, what about all your photos, contacts and other important data?

When it comes to mobile data recovery, you’ve got options. 

Read on to discover the best way to recover data from a phone with a broken screen.

Is Mobile Data Recovery Possible?

Okay, so before you start sweating bullets, let’s take a minute to breathe. Broken screens are quite common. In fact, Americans break nearly two phone screens per second — so you’re not alone. 

You might think that your phone is quite different from a computer, so traditional data recovery methods are off the table. The reality, however, is that most mobile devices operate with the same components and mechanics as any computer. 

That’s great news for you, as it means you’ve got some hope when it comes to saving your important data. How easy this will be, well, that depends on a few factors:

  • Screen visibility — Cracked screens come in all types of conditions. If you can still read what the phone is displaying, it means you’ve got the best chance at snagging those deleted photos and other data.
  • Touch functionality — In the world of touchscreen phones, touch functionality is key to navigating the software on the screen. If you’ve still got touch feedback, it’s a good sign — so take a sigh of relief.
  • Storage type — While most phones these days come with internal storage, if you happen to have a device with an SD card or something similar, all you’ll need to do is take out the card and load it up on a card reader. 
  • Operating system — Whether you’ve got an Android or an iPhone will determine which recovery strategies you can try.

If you’re reading this list and desperately trying to get some sort of response from an otherwise black screen, don’t worry — well, not yet. While the above factors make mobile file recovery easier, it doesn’t mean you’re out of luck.

How to Recover Data from a Phone with a Cracked Screen

Alright, so let’s get into it. When you pulverize your phone’s screen, and you need to grab some important information from internal storage, you’ve got a few strategies that can help. First, if you’ve got an Android phone, things are going to be quite easier. If you happen to have an iPhone, it doesn’t mean you’re out of luck — but we’ll get to that later.

Below, you’ll find some of our recommendations for mobile data recovery. 

Android Mobile File Recovery with a USB and USB OTG Cables

If you’ve got an Android phone, and the screen is still turning on, you can always use a USB on-the-go (OTG) cable. In this situation, your phone’s screen is still working, but the touch function is not. What the USB OTG cable provides is the ability to connect a USB mouse to your phone.

From here, you can use the mouse to navigate your phone to enable wireless transfers of data through other software applications or Bluetooth.

If your screen is not working, you can still access the data inside, provided you’ve enabled USB debugging mode. This method will require you to connect your phone to a computer. As long as you’ve enabled USB debugging and you’ve checked the option to “always allow from this computer,” you should be able to find your phone in your computer’s file system and recover the deleted files off an Android device.

Options for Android and iOS Data Recovery

Okay, so we’ve talked about some Android phone data recovery options, but what about the Apple users in the bunch? Moreover, what if the above options aren’t working for you? Fortunately, if you’ve got an iPhone, the iOS data recovery process can be quite painless.

Again, this all depends on if you have linked your phone to your computer. If your computer is a “trusted” connection, you should be able to move through the data backup process on iTunes quite quickly. 

If you don’t have the proper permission to run either the iOS or Android recovery options we’ve described, you may find luck with third-party software. You can find many options online, and some software is easy to use even for the most technologically illiterate. Keep in mind that many scams exist whose sole purpose is to snatch up your money when you are most desperate, so watch out.

In most cases, you’re much better off using a mobile data recovery service like Gadget Genie. Not only will you have peace of mind, but it gives you the best chance to recover your lost photos or contacts successfully.

Is Broken Screen Repair a Good Option?

Broken phone screens are by and large the most common type of mobile repair,  accounting for 29% of all phone repairs. If you’re only dealing with a cracked screen and not corrupted mobile data, you can always opt for a screen replacement. This is a great option for those of us with a sentimental attachment to our device.

It might be pricey, but it’s a surefire way to get your phone back into working order. It might not seem like the strategy you are looking for, but it solves the problem nonetheless. If you’re under warranty, you can ship off your phone to the manufacturer for repairs. If not, Gadget Genie offers the screen replacement services you need to get your phone back in no time. 

Tips for Mobile Data Recovery

Before we jump into these options, let’s be clear that we aren’t trying to throw salt in any wounds. The tips below are preventative, meaning that they won’t solve your current problem but could prevent the same situation from popping up again in the future.

Regularly Backing Up Your Data

Most mobile phones these days have some sort of backup option. For iPhones, it’s iCloud. For Android phones, it depends on the manufacturer. You can even find third-party software options that allow you to backup your data in various ways. Cloud storage is the most popular, but you can opt for hardware options like SD card storage if that’s more your style or privacy concerns are on your mind.

Take the Least Invasive Approach First

For any data recovery strategy, taking the least invasive approach first is your best choice. With a broken screen, you usually aren’t dealing with the type of data recovery that could completely delete your data — but if you are, tread carefully.

If you make a mistake and accidentally delete files or metadata, it could complicate the recovery process. It might even mean permanent data loss!

Mobile Data Recovery Services with Gadget Genie

When you’ve cracked your screen, and your phone is kaputt, Gadget Genie can fix things up and bring your dead device back to life. From screen repair to full-blown mobile data recovery, our team has the expertise you need to recover data from a phone with a broken screen. The best part? All you need to do is send your device in — we’ll do all the rest. Give us a call today at 206-249-3442, or get in touch online to get started.

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