How to downgrade your iPhone software from iOS 16 to iOS 15

This tutorial will guide you through the process of downgrading your iPhone from iOS 16 to iOS 15. But first, let’s go over the reasons why you might want to do this, and what you need to downgrade from a newer version of iOS 16 to an older version of iOS 15.

Apple iPhone 14 Pro

Why downgrade?

Downgrading the iPhone isn’t something that is done by the masses. If you’re looking to downgrade your iPhone to a previous version of iOS than what’s currently installed, you might already have your specific reasons.

Mostly, people might want to downgrade from using a beta version of iOS to a previous stable non-beta version. Sometimes, a particular app or service may not work on the latest iOS version, and you may want to go back to the previous version.

Whatever your reasons for downgrading, we will show you how to do that.

Important note: Are you simply looking to stop using the beta version of iOS and move to the public version? In that case, you don’t need to downgrade your iPhone. Just remove the beta profile from Settings > General > VPN & Device Management, and when the next version of iOS is available, your iPhone will download and install it automatically (if you have enabled Automatic Updates), or you can do it manually from Settings > General > Software Update.

You should only downgrade your iPhone if you’re looking to go back to a previous version of iOS. For example, if you’re on iOS 16 but want to go back to using iOS 15.7.

Note: You can only downgrade as long as Apple continues to sign the old version of iOS. Usually, it stops allowing old versions of iOS just a few days after a new iOS version is available.

What you need

Before we start with the step-by-step instructions, you’ll need the following:

  • Mac or Windows PC
  • The iOS IPSW file you want to downgrade to, which you can get from our Downloads section.
  • A previous backup of your iPhone or iPad. This will help you restore your data. In case you don’t have a backup file, you will have to set your iPhone as new. Note: iOS backups aren’t generationally backward compatible. That means a backup made on iOS 16 can’t be used after you have downgraded your iPhone to iOS 15. But if you have an archived iOS 15 backup, you’re golden. In case you don’t, make sure you back up your photos, videos, and all other data to iCloud, Google Drive, etc., so that you have access to them after downgrading your iPhone.

How to downgrade from iOS 16 to iOS 15

Before you downgrade, you will need to turn off the Find My feature on your iPhone running iOS 16. To do this, launch the Settings app, tap your Profile name, select Find My > Find My iPhone, and then turn off the feature.

Turn off Find My iPhone

Once Find My iPhone is off, follow these steps to downgrade your iPhone:

1) Connect your iPhone to a Mac or PC using the USB cable. Unlock your iPhone for it to be recognized on your computer and complete the Trust process, if asked.

2) Put your iPhone into Recovery mode.

3) Open Finder on Mac and iTunes on Windows PC. The iPhone should appear on the computer and Finder or iTunes will notify you that the connected iPhone is in Recovery mode.

Downgrade iOS 15 beta to iOS 14.6

4) On your Mac, click Restore iPhone while holding the Option key. Windows users should press and hold the Shift key while clicking Restore iPhone.

5) You should now be able to select the iOS IPSW file for your iPhone that you downloaded earlier. Click Open.

iOS 14.6 IPSW

6) A pop-up should appear asking for confirmation. If you’re on macOS Big Sur or later, you may encounter a Restore and Update option where it’ll automatically download the latest iOS software update. You can cancel this by simply unplugging the iPhone and reconnecting it. Now you should see the Restore button only.

The downgrade process should now commence and could take a while to finish. Once completed, you can restore from a backup to gain access to all your data. And if you don’t have a compatible backup, set up your iPhone as a new device.

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