Guide to Go Back to a Previous Version of iOS on iPhone — 2022

Most iPhone users know very well how to update iOS and Apple often releases new versions of the operating system. However, it is not so common to know the opposite process. Is it possible to install an old version of iOS? Well, surprisingly, yes, although it is not always effective and perhaps it is not entirely beneficial to do so. Here we tell you all about this curious process with which to travel to the past with your mobile.

Advantages and disadvantages of this process

Below we present the main reasons why this idea can be positive and on the contrary, the reasons why it can be negative. After that, it will be up to you to make one decision or another, but we believe it is important that you know everything before proceeding to make a decision.

Reasons for going back to a previous version

The fact that you are in this article already indicates that there is some reason why you have been curious to go back to an earlier version of the iPhone software. The reasons why this process is carried out can be very varied and each one may have their own, although the most common is usually revert to a bug-free version The improve autonomy of the telephone.



Those two are the main causes of complaints in different social networks and technical service forums. Apple usually tries to optimize iOS to the maximum and make it work in a stable way on any iPhone, however, these versions are not always free of bugs. While it is true that they are usually resolved quickly, it is understandable that in some cases it can cause discomfort. This is especially notable in the first large versions of a system such as iOS 12, iOS 13 or iOS 14 and less so in intermediate versions such as iOS 14.1, iOS 14.2, etc.

Risks involved in carrying out the process

Not everything is beautiful in the fact of installing an old version on your iPhone, since there are certain aspects that must be taken into account before proceeding to carry out any type of downgrade on the phone. The highlight you should know now is this:

    Data loss, since if you have a backup in a later version than the one you are going to install, you will lose it and you will have to configure the iPhone from scratch. If you have a copy made in the version you are going to install you can put it, but keep in mind that since then you will have made changes to your device.
  • Although at the time you could have a good user experience with that previous version, now bugs may appear .
  • You security and privacy They could be at risk, since they are usually aspects that Apple polishes in each version. If at the time a major vulnerability was detected in iOS that has been corrected with a current version, you will be exposing your iPhone to it by putting an older version.
  • you will lose visual and functional innovations that may have been introduced in the most recent versions of iOS.

Based on what has been said, it is understandable that you want to return the iPhone to a previous version if you are having errors. However, the most prudent and advisable thing is to wait for a new update to be released. If it is a serious and/or widespread fault, the company usually does not take long to correct it. If it is a punctual failure, you could resort to format iPhone completely in order to eliminate any software errors.

How to go back to another version of iOS

If you have already decided and want to choose to install an old software version on your iPhone, here are several sections in which we will guide you through the steps you have to follow to carry out the process, although it could cause problems, as we will discuss further. go ahead.

Make a backup before anything else

It is not guaranteed that the process can work, as we told you before. And if this happens, it would be very unpleasant not to be able to go back to the last stable version you were already on and keep your data. That is why it is advisable that you make a backup. To do this you have the following methods:

    iCloud, which can be done from Settings > your name > iCloud > Backup. It can also be done by connecting iPhone to a Mac or Windows PC via cable using iTunes/Finder. Computer,storing the copy on this computer. To do this you must connect the iPhone to the computer via cable and use iTunes / Finder.

icloud copy

It should be noted that all data that has been synchronized with iCloud will be saved regardless of whether there is a backup or not. Photos, calendars, notes and more that you can check from Settings > your name > iCloud.

Prepare iPhone for installation

In order to install a previous version you will need a computer, regardless of whether it is Mac or Windows, since you will have to use it to connect the iPhone to it. In the mobile what you will have to do is put it in DFU mode , which is done in the following way depending on the model of iPhone you have:

    iPhone 8 and later: Press and quickly release the Volume Up button, then the Volume Down button, and finally press and hold the Power button until you see a screen that tells you to connect iPhone to a computer. iPhone 7 and 7 Plus:press and hold the volume up and down buttons along with the power button at the same time until you see a screen prompting you to connect iPhone to a computer. iPhone 6s and earlier: Press and hold the Home button and the Power button at the same time until an image appears on the screen instructing you to connect the device to a computer.

iOS IPSW Download

IPSW is the name that receives the type of file related to the software of the iPhone and iPad. This must be downloaded from an external portal, saved on the computer and installed on the iPhone. There are some pages that allow you to download these, although you must be careful because not all of them offer trust. You should also know that IPSW files could weigh a few GB and therefore be a slow process, so we recommend you have a good internet connection and be patient. The steps to follow are these:

  1. Go to ipsw.me
  2. Select iPhone.
  3. Choose the device model you have.
  4. Tap the version of iOS you want to install.
  5. Look for the Download button and click it to start the download.

download ipsw iphone

Installing IPSW on the iPhone

Once you have downloaded the IPSW file, save it to a folder that you can easily access. If you have a Mac with macOS Catalina or later you will need to use Finder for the following process. If is one Mac with macOS Mojave or earlier or a PC con Windows It should be iTunes. The steps are these:

  1. Connect the iPhone to the computer via cable.
  2. Open Finder/iTunes and go to the iPhone management tab.
  3. While holding down the Alt/Option key, click Restore.
  4. Select the IPSW file you downloaded.

restore iphone

Once this is done, the installation of the software will begin, you will be able to see the process in the upper right corner of the computer screen. It is important that do not disconnect the iPhone during the process . Once it's done, you'll be able to set up the iPhone on the iOS version you selected.

Problems during installation

At the point where you've had trouble getting through the process, unfortunately you'll most likely have to backtrack on your idea of ​​going back to a previous version. The reasons for this and the possible solution if your iPhone has been blocked are the ones that we expose in the following sections.

Cause the process did not work

After a new update is released, usually within a week, Apple stops signing old versions. What does this mean? Well, among other things, the company is no longer responsible for the software failures of your device and if you have to go to the technical service, you must do so once you have updated the iPhone software.

This fact also causes Apple's restoration tools such as iTunes to be able to warn that it is a version that is no longer signed and therefore prevent its installation.

What to do if the iPhone keeps this message

If the process failed and you get something like the above prompting you to connect the iPhone to a computer, it means that you cannot access the iPhone. But calm down because it is not a permanent block or anything similar, in fact it happens when the software is damaged. Of course, to access it again you will need to install the latest available version of iOS.

iphone dfu

If you already had the device connected by cable, you will have to disconnect it and reconnect it and this time follow these steps:

  1. Open iTunes/Finder.
  2. Choose the iPhone management option.
  3. Click on Restore.
  4. Follow the on-screen steps for iOS installation.

Do not disconnect the iPhone from the computer until the process is complete. When you do, the iPhone will appear ready to set up on its latest software version.

How to install later the latest version available

It may be that despite having reverted to a previous version of iOS, the problem you had was not solved. It may also be that over time a new update has been released that you are interested in having or, at least, trying. The fact of having returned to an old version does not mean that the iPhone will stay there forever and therefore you will be able to install new updates without any problem.

The steps to follow for this are the usual ones , since the process does not change. You will need to go to Settings > General > Software Update to download and install that version. You can also do it with iTunes/Finder on a computer, although this method is faster and more comfortable. In any case, and returning to the matter of having bugs for which you want to go to previous versions, it is recommended that you go to technical support because it might not be a bug caused by the software.