[iOS 18] How to Downgrade iOS without Losing Data

If you are not satisfied with your current iOS version, here's how to get your iPhone /iPad back to the previous version by downgrading from the latest iOS version.


By Dylan / Updated on July 8, 2024

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Why did users want to downgrade iOS?

The new iOS 18 is now available with plenty of features, like enhancements with shared AirTags and AirPods, innovative mood monitoring and journaling, generation of animated stickers from live photos, etc. which are favored by the public.

However, the latest iOS version also brings unpredictable errors and problems like iPhone software update failed or the iOS 18 not working properly on some iPhone models, which greatly influence the normal use of the iDevice.

Apart from these issues with the latest iOS 18 version, most Apple users are also having a lot of issues after the previous iOS 18 update and want to downgrade iOS 18 to 17 or even back to iOS 16. Here are some reasons:

● The new iOS version will take up a lot of space, there is not enough space for running others.
● After upgrading the iOS version, the device heats up and the battery life decreases, Bluetooth/Wi-Fi cannot connect, and the device crashes.
● When the new version of iOS is just released, there may be lags and bugs, and many users can't stand it.
● The new iOS version will block some applications that are compatible with the older one, which brings great inconvenience to the users.
● Users are accustomed to the older iOS version and may not like the changes on the new version of iOS.

Preparation: Back up iPhone/iPad data before downgrading iOS

The downgrading is like a factory reset thatwill wipe off your iDevice data. Therefore,to downgrade iOS to an earlier version, you will need to back up your iPhone or iPad beforehand.

When it comes to backup, iCloud/iTunes will be your first choice, but restoring to a lower iOS version from a backup on a higher version of iOS is not supported. For instance, when you back up your iPhone on iOS 18 using iCloud/iTunes, the backup data cannot be restored to iOS 17.

If you have backed up your device before upgrading to the latest iOS, you can easily restore data back, but if you haven’t, it is recommended tomake a backup of your iPhone or iPad data with an iOS backup tool to avoid data loss.

Compared with iTunes or iCloud, FoneTool is the best choice to back up and restore iDevice data.

√ Free software: Backup and restore data without limitation with FoneTool.
√ Fast speed: Transfer and backup data in seconds with FoneTool.
√ Select Data: Choose specific items to back up and restore the custom backup without data loss.
√ Widely Compatible: It supports various iOS devices including iPhone 4 to iPhone 15, iPad and iPod Touch.

Download FoneTool and follow the next steps to back up your iPhone/ iPad.

Download FreewareWin 11/10/8.1/8/7/XP
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Step 1. On the main screen, click Phone Backup, locate Selective Backup and click Get Started.

custom backup

Step 2. Click the icon to preview and select specific items you want to back up, and click OK.

select files

Step 3. Choose a storage space > Click the Start Backup option.

click backup

When the backup is completed, you can go to the My Backups interface > Click the Restore option to restore your data to iPhone.

restore to device

How to downgrade iOS to an earlier version with iTunes

There is a limited time for you to downgrade iOS as Apple needs to 'sign' the old version of iOS before you downgrade, it will stop signing the older iOS version soon when a new version is officially released. So before downgrading iOS, please first check if Apple allows you to downgrade the older iOS version.

If you have backed up your iDevice data and decided to revert back to the previous iOS, one of the easiest ways to downgrade your iOS version is to use iTunes. Follow these steps to downgrade from iOS 18 beta to iOS 17.

Before this, you need to go to Settings > iCloud > Find My iPhone and turn off the feature.

find my iphone

Step 1. Download the firmware that matches your iOS device model from Apple’s IPSW website, choose the firmware version you want to downgrade.

Step 2. Connect your iPhone to your PC, launch iTunes, and choose your connected device.

Step 3. Click on the Summary option.

Step 4. Hold the Shift key in Windows and click on the Restore iPhone button.

restore iphone

Step 5. Go to the downloaded IPSW firmware > Select it to be installed on your device, and your iOS device will be downgraded.


That's all for how to downgrade iOS. Actually, it’s not suggested to downgrade iOS. If you insist, you’d better back up data in advance with FoneTool to selectively back up your photos, videos, contacts, and messages to keep your data.

Dylan · Editor
Dylan is an editor of mobile backup software. He likes to share the latest news about iPhone and iOS, write useful tips, and give solutions to help people solve all kinds of issues.