It can be tempting to install a beta version of iOS to have a first peek at upcoming features, especially when brand new software is being released, such as iOS 11 which offers a number of significant new few features. But by definition, these pre-release versions of the operating system can be unstable and take a toll on the performances of your iPhone or iPad.
In that case, going from the iOS beta to a public release is the best solution to get things back to a stable state. But how do you go from beta to official version of iOS? In this post, we will detail a couple of ways how you can switch from an iOS beta to an official iOS release.
Option 1: Downgrade to latest public release of iOS
Probably the most common way of going at it is to downgrade the operating system to a previously released public version of iOS. For example, if you decided to play with the new iOS 11 beta and want out of it, you can always downgrade to the latest public version of iOS, which at the time of writing is iOS 10.3.2.
In that situation, you should be ready to restore your iPhone and probably lose any data you have on it, such as your custom settings, email accounts, downloaded apps, etc. The reason you will likely lose all that data is because it is not backward compatible with previous versions of the operating system.
How to downgrade from iOS beta to the latest official version of iOS
1) First and foremost, make sure you back up your data, especially the most important one such as photos. Unless you use iCloud Photo Library, or backed them up locally or via a cloud service, these photos will be lost. Same is true with much of your data, so make sure you back up your iPhone or iPad.
2) Download the latest public version of iOS available to your computer. You can find public releases of iOS on our Downloads page. From there, look for the latest iOS release for your specific device, and download the firmware to your desktop.
3) If you have Find My iPhone enabled on your device, go to Settings > Apple ID > iCloud > Find My iPhone, and turn off Find My iPhone.
4) Launch iTunes, plug your iPhone or iPad to your computer via the USB cable, and go to the Summary tab of iTunes that shows basic information about your device.
5) Hold down the Option key of your Mac (or Shift key of your Windows computer), and click Restore iPhone (or Restore iPad). Make sure to hold down on the Option key (or Shift) while clicking Restore. This is a very important step.
6) A new window will appear, allowing you to select a specific firmware to downgrade to. In our case, we want to select the firmware version that we previously downloaded in step 2 above.
7) iTunes will now restore your iPhone or iPad and install the latest official version of iOS available for your device.
8) Once the restore is complete, your iPhone or iPad will be running a clean operating system. From there, you will have to set it all up again. If you had made a backup of your device on that software version or an older one, you will be able to set up your iPhone or iPad from that backup. However, as mentioned before, you will not be able to restore the device using the backup you might have made from the beta version.
Depending on your available options, you will now have an iPhone or iPad running the latest public version of iOS.
Option 2: Update to official release
This second option is probably easier, but it depends a lot on timing.
With this option, you can actually update from a beta software to the public release of that software version. Are you lost yet? Let me take an example to illustrate the situation.
Let’s imagine you have downloaded the iOS 11 beta to your iPhone, and at some point in the future, Apple actually releases iOS 11 to the public. You will have the opportunity to update from beta to public release.
If you are on, say, iOS 11 beta 4, and Apple releases iOS 11 to the public, you will be able to update to that official version.
In option 1 above, you were downgrading to a previous public version of the software because the current version of the beta you were running was not available to the public yet. In this option 2, because the public version of the beta software you are running is now available, you can update to it. Think of it this way:
- Downgrade = go back
- Update = go forward
That said, this method is particularly handy if you are running the iOS 11 GM release for example, and want to update to iOS 11.x when it becomes available.
How to update from iOS beta to newest public iOS release
1) On your iPhone or iPad running the beta software, go to Settings > General > Profile. Tap on the iOS Beta Software Profile.
2) Tap Delete Profile. Enter your passcode to confirm the deletion. Your iPhone or iPad will reboot.
At this point, you are still running the beta software, but because you deleted the profile signing certificate, the device is not eligible anymore to receive beta updates.
3) On your iPhone or iPad, go to Settings > General > Software Update. If there is a software update available for your device, it will show up in there, and if you go through with the update, you will then be downloading and installing the public iOS release.
As you can see, you do have a few options available depending on your situation. If you are running a beta software and want to go back to an older official software version, then you will have to downgrade using method 1. If you are running the latest beta and want to get out of the beta and onto software versions equal to or above the beta version you are running, then updating using method 2 is your best bet.