How to downgrade iOS 16 beta to iOS 15

Illustration about downgrading from iOS 16 beta to stable iOS 15

Apple unveiled the exciting new iOS 16, and we already have a post on how to download and install it. But since it is in the early beta stage, the new features come with countless bugs and glitches. If these bugs are bothering you a little too much, here’s how to downgrade from the iOS 16 beta to a stable iOS 15 update.

Note: The same steps apply to downgrading iPadOS 16 Developer Beta to stable iPadOS 15.

Before you begin:

  • You need a Mac or PC to downgrade from iOS 16 beta to iOS 15.
  • To download the IPSW file, you need a fast, stable internet connection.
  • You cannot restore the iOS 16 backup to iOS 15. Thus, make sure you manually back up any new documents, images, files, etc., you created while using iOS 16 to services like iCloud Drive, Google Photos, and One Drive. Later you can re-download these on iOS 15.
  • If you have an archived backup of iOS 15, you can restore your phone data before you installed iOS 16 beta.
  • If you don’t have iOS 15 backups, you will have to set up your iPhone as new after downgrading.

How to downgrade from iOS 16 beta to iOS 15

  1. Download the device restore image on your computer: This link shows how and from where to download the latest iOS IPSW file for your iPhone.
    The IPSW file size will be around 5.5GB. Please wait for it to download.

    Download device restore image on your computer
  2. Turn off Find My iPhone: Open iPhone Settings → tap your nameFind MyFind My iPhone → toggle off Find My iPhone. Enter the device passcode and tap Turn Off.

    turn-off-find-my-iphone
  3. Connect your iOS 16 iPhone to the computer: Use an appropriate cable to connect the iPhone to Mac or Windows PC. A message may appear “Unlock iPhone to Use Accessories,” use Touch ID/Face ID/passcode to unlock the device.
  4. Open Finder or iTunes: On Mac running macOS Catalina, Big Sur, or macOS Monterey, open Finder. On Mac running macOS Mojave or earlier or Windows PC, open iTunes.
  5. Locate your iPhone: In Finder’s left sidebar, you will see it under Locations. On iTunes, click the tiny iPhone icon. If asked, click Trust inside Finder. Now tap Trust on the iPhone and enter the passcode.
  6. Put the device in Recovery Mode: The steps differ according to iPhone models. Follow this guide for detailed steps on entering recovery mode. Here is a brief.
    • On iPhone 8 or later: In quick succession, press and release the Volume Up button, then Volume Down button, press and continue to hold the right Side button even after the Apple logo appears. Leave it only after you see the recovery mode screen (a cable pointing towards the laptop).

      Black iPhone Recovery Mode screen with a cable pointing towards a laptop
  7. Finder or iTunes will let you know that it has detected a device in Recovery Mode.
  8. Restore iPhone using the IPSW file: On Mac (whether using Finder or iTunes), press and hold the Option key. On Windows PC, press and hold the Shift key. Now, select Restore iPhone.
  9. Find the IPSW file you downloaded in step 1 in the new window. Click to select it and then click Open.
  10. You will see a popup asking for your confirmation. Read it and click Restore.
    Note: On macOS Big Sur and later, after clicking Restore → Restore and Update, it automatically shows to download and install the latest iOS 15 version. It will download the file. You won’t have to use the IPSW file. That’s good. However, you may also click Cancel from the popup (or unplug and replug the iPhone). Then you will see a popup with an option to Restore. Now you may follow steps 8 and later.
  11. Let the computer finish the job: It will take some time for the process to complete. You will see the status on your Mac or PC. The iPhone screen will also show the Apple logo with a progress bar. To avoid accidental unplugging, ensure the iPhone is appropriately placed and there is no unnecessary movement.

Done!

Once the process completes, the iPhone will restart. You will see the setup screen on your iPhone running iOS 15. You may now choose to restore from a previous backup (if available) or choose one of the other options.

I hope this extensive guide to downgrade iOS 16 and reinstall iOS 15 was helpful. If you have any additional questions, feel free to ask us in the comments down below.

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