How to Setup the iPhone 8

This guide will show you how to set up the iPhone 8 or iPhone 8 Plus the right way. We’ll show you which iPhone 8 settings to choose, and help you understand why the iPhone 8 wants to know your location and to share other data.

We’ll also cover how long it takes to setup the iPhone 8 so that you can set aside the right amount of time before you start the process at home. This guide assumes you had your iPhone 8 shipped to you or you need to set it up again after picking it up in store.

Most of the time, when you buy the iPhone 8 in a store or at a carrier they will set it up for you. They may ask you some of these questions, or they may simply choose the most common options. If you have the iPhone 8 shipped to you, it’s possible to take it to a store for help, but you may get better service if you buy it in store if that is your plan.

How Long Does iPhone 8 Setup Take?

iPhone 8 setup takes about 10 to 15 minutes with no problems, and longer to restore.
iPhone 8 setup takes about 10 to 15 minutes with no problems, and longer to restore.

You can setup the iPhone 8 in about 5 to 10 minutes. Once the initial setup is done, you can start downloading apps, sending texts and making calls. If you want to restore from iCloud or from iTunes, the iPhone 8 setup will take a while longer.

Most users restore from a backup since it brings over everything to your iPhone, even where your apps are on the home screen when you use iCloud Restore. We often choose to setup as a new iPhone if we are trying to get away from a problem on an old phone or if we are moving to a smaller storage size like with the iPhone 8 Plus.

When you choose to use iCloud Restore plan on at least an hour or two for the apps and data to download, but you don’t need stay next to your computer while this happens. If you choose iTunes Restore, your iPhone will need plugged in for the duration. Plan on 30 to 60 minutes for an iTunes restore.

How to Setup the iPhone 8 or iPhone 8 Plus

Watch the video above to see how you can setup the iPhone 8 or iPhone 8 Plus out of the box. There is a new Quick Setup method that automatically transfers some of your settings over to the new iPhone, but we’ll focus on the options you need to select if you do it manually. In the video above we walk through what the options mean and what they do.

Backup Your iPhone

The first thing to do is hopefully already done. You’ll want to backup the iPhone to iCloud or iTunes so that your information is safe.

This backup is also how you do a restore to your iPhone 8 after you complete the setup process.

Activate Your iPhone 8

You’ll need to put your SIM in the new iPhone 8, or if it came with a SIM you will need to turn your old iPhone off. Activation should take just a minute or two, and it will likely be an easy process. In some cases you will need the billing zip code and the last four digits of the primary account holder’s SSN. If you have any issues, you can call your carrier and they will help you out over the phone in just a few minutes.

Choose iPhone 8 Setup Method

Pick how you want to setup your iPhone 8.
Pick how you want to setup your iPhone 8.

Once you activate your device, you need to choose how you want to setup the iPhone 8. You four options available, and there is no wrong answer. You’re choice will depend on if you have a backup, where that backup is, if you are coming from Android or if you want to start from scratch.

  • Restore from iCloud Backup – Restore by downloading from an iCloud backup.
  • Restore from iTunes Backup – Restore by plugging into your computer.
  • Set Up as a New iPhone – Start from scratch and leave behind apps you don’t use and old iPhone problems.
  • Move Data from Android – Quickly sync important data from an Android phone to the iPhone.

Simply choose the option that corresponds with your best backup, or to come over from Android unless you want to start fresh like we did when moving to an iPhone 8 with less storage.

Choose iPhone 8 Options to Finish Setup

Choose Express Settings or manually choose iPhone 8 options.
Choose Express Settings or manually choose iPhone 8 options.

You can choose to use express settings while you choose your iPhone 8 options, or you can manually choose what happens. Here’s a look at some of the options you will need to enable or skip.

  1. Sign in to your Apple ID, and if needed agree to the terms and conditions.
  2. Setup Touch ID – Train at least one finger to lock and unlock your iPhone.
  3. Configure Your Home Button vibration feedback.
  4. Turn on and set up Apple Pay if you want to use this service.
  5. Enable Siri – Train with Hey Siri now or later.
  6. True Tone Display – This is on by default, but you can turn it off later.
  7. Choose Standard or Zoomed Display
  8. Share Location – This allows apps to know where you are to show nearby places and weather.
  9. Share Data with Apple & Developers – Decide if you want device info shared with these sources.
  10. Enter your account passwords as needed so that you can connect to your accounts.

You may need to sign back into some apps and set up services again. You will need to unpair your Apple Watch with your old iPhone and re-pair it with your new iPhone which can be problematic, so set aside at least 30 minutes to switch your Apple Watch to a new iPhone.

24 Best iPhone 8 Cases

Speck Presidio Ultra iPhone 8 Case

Speck Presidio Ultra iPhone 8 Case
$49.99 from Speck

Generally when you have to pick an iPhone 8 case you have to choose between style and durability or thickness and protection. Speck already did a great job of delivering just enough protection and a lot of style, and the new Presidio Ultra for iPhone 8 takes this to another level.

This is a multi-part iPhone 8 case that allows you to carry a Speck Slim Presidio case on your phone at all times. This slim case includes a raised bezel a great amount of protection and easy clickable buttons. There is a large opening for charging and lear access to the speakers.

When you need more protection -- like when working out, going outdoors or being more active -- you can snap on the include Impactium Ultra Bumper. This adds another layer of shock protection from drops, added screen protection on the front of your iPhone 8 and also keeps dust and debris out of the charging port.

It's a slim iPhone 8 case all the time and a rugged iPhone 8 case when you need it, without the need for two cases. There's even a holster included to secure it to you or to use as a kickstand.


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