How to recover deleted or lost files on Android

Your phone stores files as important as any PC hard drive, losing them can sometimes be crucial. In this article we tell you how to recover lost files on Android , and we hope it will help you.

Backups in the cloud , in this sense, are essential. There are more and more security measures that our phones come standard with, which prevent file loss or involuntary deletion.


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In addition, the space on a smartphone is limited , and it costs money, so it is interesting to have copies of our files in the cloud storage , also to keep the operation of our terminal in the best conditions.

But don’t worry, in addition to file recovery through the cloud, there are other methods , with which, if you’re lucky, you can recover what you’ve lost, although it all depends on the nature of the file.

Table of Contents

  1. Check the recycle bin
  2. Check your backups in each application
  3. Stop using your phone while trying to recover the file
  4. recovery applications
  5. data recovery companies
  6. Contact the manufacturer

Check the recycle bin

Sometimes the file has been deleted, but remains in the phone’s recycle bin, just like on your PC. That is why it is important that you review it and make sure that that photo or video is not there, waiting.

Where is the recycle bin depends on the brand of your mobile phone, but it is common for photo galleries and file managers, for example, to have such an option in their menu, usually in the upper right corner when you enter them .

Check your backups in each application

Many of the applications on our phone have file recovery systems if they have been uploaded to the cloud within the established period. In addition, some applications such as WhatsApp have their own recovery systems.

Google Drive

Google Drive, for example, makes automatic backups every certain period of time of your files. You can check if you have one and this can be great news to find your lost file.

You can view the backups of your mobile device or WhatsApp chat messages in Google Drive, as well as check the status of your backup.

  • Go to the Android app or the web version of Google Drive.

Web: Google Drive

  • At the bottom left, click “Storage” .
  • In the top right, click “Backups” .
  • Click on view details of a backup

Something you have to keep in mind is that after 57 days the backup has an expiration date and will be deleted.

google photos

Google Photos also has a trash can that stores photos for 60 days , but it works a bit differently by backing up your photos to Google Drive.

This means that even if you have completely deleted a photo through another app, it may still be recoverable through Google Photos . If you don’t see your photo or video here, check the trash can from the hamburger menu at the top left.

If you still have no luck, try visiting the web browser version and check your trash can as well.

Web: Google Photos

Even if you delete your photos from the trash in Google Photos, there is a chance that these changes have not yet been reflected in Google Drive. So check it out quickly here too.

Something you may not know about Google Drive is that you can ask it to back up any folder on your device.

To do this, follow this path:

Photos -> Settings -> Back up and sync -> Back up device folders

WhatsApp Backup

WhatsApp is by far the application through which more files are received and stored by our mobile phones , so we have explained how to open WhatsApp backup on Android .

To activate the backup, follow this path in the application:

Settings -> Chats -> Chat Backup

To access the copy you have to uninstall WhatsApp , but it will only work for you if the most recent backup is prior to deleting the files you need. Simply uninstall WhatsApp and reinstall it from the Play Store and the chats and files of the latest version will be at your disposal again.

In addition, it is possible that you have several backup copies on your device and WhatsApp itself lets you choose which one you want to install. The only problem, then, will be knowing the date that file was on your device.

Backup to Dropbox

Like the rest of the applications that we mentioned before, you can try to restore your files if they were stored in a Dropbox backup, for this, log in to Dropbox and follow the following path:

Deleted files (left sidebar) -> Click on the file to recover -> Restore

Try removing the MicroSD card

If your file was on the MicroSD card, this is good news, it is likely that by inserting it into your PC you can recover the data . On your computer you can use file recovery programs to try to locate the data that was on the card, and hopefully recover it.

Stop using your phone while trying to recover the file

When a file has been deleted from your device’s memory, in many cases it is not really deleted, but your phone shows it as empty, this is your best hope to recover it, so it is important that you do not add new files that can overwrite the lost data in question.

That WhatsApp group in which they do not stop sending you photos, those games that save their data, emails that arrive non-stop or all these applications in the foreground or background use data space on your device, they bring data that can overwrite your file .

Therefore, if it is really crucial that you recover a file, it is best to disable all applications or put the phone in airplane mode.

recovery applications

If none of these steps work, then you’ll need to start trying third-party solutions. Android data recovery apps have chances to recover lost data. They work by finding where the data has been stored even when Android marks it as deleted.

Android applications like EaseUS MobiSaver or Recuva can be a good starting point in the process

data recovery companies

Depending on how desperate you are and how much money you are willing to spend, another option may be to use a data recovery service . These services offer to recover data from any device using various methods.

Contact the manufacturer

It’s a long shot, but if your lost files belonged to a game or app you downloaded from the Play Store, you might be able to recover them with a little help from the developer .

This is because the developers manage (or at least have access to) the servers that contain the cloud backup copies of the . Not only that, but they can also learn about some backups that your apps make by default. They might give you directions on how to find your files.

Losing valuable files can be frustrating , we’ve all been there, and we hope some of these options have helped you get them back. We recommend that from now on you activate the backup options of your phone, so that this dramatic scene does not happen again.


by Abdullah Sam
I’m a teacher, researcher and writer. I write about study subjects to improve the learning of college and university students. I write top Quality study notes Mostly, Tech, Games, Education, And Solutions/Tips and Tricks. I am a person who helps students to acquire knowledge, competence or virtue.

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