Google Drive is an amazing data backup tool for Android devices, which also facilitates an easy switch to another Android device. But does the backed up data stay on Google drive forever? No, it doesn’t.
Your device’s data is backed up on Google Drive for as long as you use the device but if you stop using it for a period of two weeks — by switching devices — then Google starts an expiration countdown after which that data is deleted for good.
“Your backup will remain as long as you use your device. If you don’t use your device for 2 weeks, you may see an expiration date below your backup,” Google support page states.
According to a Reddit user, Google doesn’t send any notifications for when the countdown timer is started or the data is deleted.
“Last week I randomly glanced at my Google Drive Backup folder, and the Android backup for my 6P was missing. Contacting Drive support confirms that there’s no recovery. There was no warning from Google. They just deleted my data,” the Reddit user wrote.
“There’s apparently an expiration date that shows up under the backup if I had checked the Backup folder sooner, but there was no notification, no email, no proactive notice at all,” the Redditor added.
Android devices running Android 6.0 Marshmallow or higher can backup and restore apps, call history, device settings, contacts, calendar, SMS (Pixel only), and Photos and Videos (Pixel only).
Google Drive can also be used to backup and restore your messages and attachments to WhatsApp but doesn’t allow users to look at the backed up files.
We’ve reached out to Google seeking clarification on exactly how long these backups are available for users before they’re deleted for good. We will soon update the report with the official statement.