If you try out the iOS 8 beta and it is not what you expected you can downgrade from iOS 8 to iOS 7 during the beta period without any major hurdles.
According to Apple there is no official iOS 8 to iOS 7 downgrade available to iOS 8 beta users, but it is possible to use a special restore option to downgrade right now.
Apple will close this hole before the iOS 8 release date this fall, so don’t expect an easy downgrade option when the public release arrives.
The iOS 8 beta is not a finished product so performance, battery life and app compatibility is not up to the same experience that iOS 7 or iOS 7.1 provides. If you tried the iOS 8 beta 1 and decided that this is not for you, follow these instructions to downgrade to iOS 7.
Two big caveats about this process. If you give up your iOS 7 jailbreak to try the iOS 8 beta you will go back to an iPhone without a jailbreak. The only downgrade possible is to iOS 7.1.1, for which there is no public jailbreak.
It is also very important for users that want to restore from a backup to avoid backing up while on iOS 8. Apple does not let users restore a backup from a newer version of iOS to an older version. You should be able to restore a backup you made before using the iOS 8 beta, which makes this a relatively easy way to try the iOS 8 beta for a few days and then go back.
How to Downgrade from the iOS 8 Beta to iOS 7
Apple does not offer a one click downgrade option, and this is a little more complicated than installing the iOS 8 beta on your iPhone or iPad. You need to find the iOS 7 download for your specific device. If you are a developer Apple offers a download in the developer center, but for average users just trying out iOS 8 you will need to look elsewhere.
If you visit iOSDay, you can download the right version of iOS 7 for your iPhone or iPad. the download section lists iOS 7.1, but it is actually the iOS 7.1.1 ipsw file. You need to download the exact file for your device. If you aren’t sure which model iPhone or iPad you own use this page to figure it out. You can also look at the back of your iPhone.
1. Download the right iOS 7 ipsw for your iPhone or iPad.
2. Put your iPhone into Recovery Mode. To do this you will need to follow these steps.
- Turn the iPhone off as normal.
- Hold the home button and plug the lightning Cable or Dock Connector in with the other end connected to your computer.
- Keep holding the home button until the recovery Mode logo shown above pops up.
3. iTunes Should recognize the iPhone in recovery mode and show a message similar to the one below.
4. Some users can click Restore and iTunes will download the right file for them. Other users may need to use a method similar to installing the iOS 8 beta.
- On Mac, Option click restore.
- On PC Shift click restore.
5. When prompted find and click on the iOS 7.1 ipsw that you downloaded. Click Open and then click Restore.
6. Wait for the iPhone or iPad to restart with iOS 7.1.1 installed.
7. If you have an iOS 7 backup you want to restore from follow the on screen directions to restore that backup.
Once the iOS 8 public release arrives this fall you will not be able to downgrade from iOS 8 to iOS 7. Although Apple does not design the beta to let just anyone test iOS 8 it could be the right time for you to try it.