How to Downgrade iOS 17 Beta to iOS 16

Jun 20, 2023 - Leave a Comment

Downgrade iOS 17 beta to iOS 16

If you gave into the temptation of installing iOS 17 beta onto your iPhone and now regret doing so because of incompatibility issues, bugs, or performance complaints, you may be interested in downgrading iOS 17 beta back to stable iOS 16 release.

We’ll show you how you can downgrade and remove iOS 17 beta from iPhone, returning back to a stable iOS 16 release on your device.

Important Notes About Your Data & iOS 17 Backups

It’s important to note that iOS backups are not backwards compatible, meaning if you made a backup from iOS 17 you can not restore that to iOS 16.

However, if you have a backup made from iOS 16 (prior to updating to iOS 17 beta), then you can use that iOS 16 backup after you downgrade to restore your stuff back to your device.

If you do not have a backup from iOS 16, and you downgrade from iOS 17 to iOS 16, you will be removing everything from the iPhone and setting up the device as new, without any of your data. If this is unacceptable to you, your best choice is to preserve your data and stay on iOS 17.

You should always backup your device and data before proceeding with any iOS update, and before downgrading. Failure to backup could result in permanent data loss.

How to Downgrade & Remove iOS 17 Beta and Revert to iOS 16

Downgrading iOS 17 beta requires removing iOS 17 from the iPhone by erasing the device, meaning everything on the device will be erased and removed. If you have a backup compatible with iOS 16 made prior to updating to iOS 17, you can use that to restore your stuff. If you do not wish to erase your iPhone, do not proceed any further.

  1. Connect the iPhone to a computer using a USB Lightning cable
  2. Open the Finder on Mac, or Apple Devices / iTunes on Windows PC
  3. With iPhone plugged into the computer, place the iPhone into Recovery Mode by pressing the following button sequence exactly: press and release Volume Up, press and release Volume Down, press and hold the Power/Side button until you see a restore dialog on the computer pop-up informing you that a problem with iPhone has been detected
  4. Click on “Restore” to erase iOS 17 beta and remove it from the iPhone, restoring back to the latest iOS 16 stable build
  5. Let the full iOS restore process finish on iPhone

After the downgrade has finished, iPhone will start back up into a fresh installation of the latest version of iOS 16 that is available from Apple. This is basically like the iPhone is brand new, with no data on it at all.

Go through the iPhone setup process as usual now, as if it were brand new. During this process, if you wish to restore your data from a compatible backup, choose to restore the iOS 16 data from a backup stored in iCloud, iTunes / Apple Devices, or Finder. Otherwise, set up the iPhone as if it were new.

Remember, only iOS 16 backups are compatible with iOS 16, and iOS 17 backups are not backwards compatible. This means if your only recent backup is from iOS 17, you can not use that to restore data to an iOS 16 device. This limitation can be frustrating and is curious, but it has long been in place with Apple devices.

Did you downgrade from iOS 17 beta and remove the iOS 17 beta from your iPhone? Did you restore from a backup or set the iPhone up as new? Let us know your experiences and thoughts in the comments.


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Posted by: Jamie Cuevas in iPhone, Tips & Tricks

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