back to article Apple: Now that you've updated to iOS 7... YOU CAN NEVER GO BACK

Apple has banned any fanbois running iOS 7 from reverting back to a previous version of the iDevice operating system. Fanbois who downloaded the latest release or developer beta of iOS 7 had the option of retreating back to the warm (and functional) cocoon offered by iOS 6. But with the release of the latest update to its …


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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Surely you can brick the phone and reapply older iOS manually, otherwise you'd have to ask what kind of moron releases an operating system upgrade that you can't rollback?

    1. Jediben

      And here I thought that the first word of the article's title would be clue enough...

    2. HMB

      Why is anyone surprised?

      From the very beginning Apple have been a company that doesn't shy away of laying down the law when it wants to. It's not unusual for it to adopt the "My Way or the Highway" attitude. I think this approach is both good and bad.

      If you're an iPhone user/licensee that wants to go back to the older iOS, I implore you... go throw on a nice cardigan and maybe a suit jacket, go get yourself a Latte from Starbucks, sit down, take a sip and then look deep in your heart and ask yourself: "Who am I to dilute Apple's brand image?".

    3. LarsG

      Who cares?

      The change from iOS 6 to iOS 7 won't even register on the Richter scale of tech in a years time let alone 10 years. While it is the 'next big thing' today it will have no real significance in any history book.

      So who cares anyway?

      1. Don Jefe

        Re: Who cares?

        That's true of 98% of all Human endeavor. We like to think of ourselves and the things we do as meaningful. They almost always aren't. Besides, most technology doesn't make it into the history books long term.

        Electricity, accurate time keeping, photography, putting things into space and nuclear based science are big deals and changed human history, prior to that most history book "worthy" technology involved digging bigger holes than the last guy and stacking the materials from those holes in neat and exciting new shapes.

        Look at the lightning rod. It made stunning changes in Human civilization and elevated Benjamin Franklin to near deity status. General history doesn't get into that, I highly doubt Apple products will factor into history much.

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward


      "Some dyed-in-the-wool Apple fans have been grumbling about the new design of iOS 7"

      Serves them f'ing right for choosing to use Apple or MS rather than a freedomware option where they can play to their hearts' content.

      1. Shane Sturrock

        Re: FFS

        At least with my iPhone I can rock up to any phone shop in the world and buy a SIM that will work in it since it was bought unlocked as is required by local law here in NZ. Go buy a European Samsung phone and do the same, I dare you.

        1. majorursa

          Re: FFS

          What are you trying to say? I have a 'European Samsung' Phone and can put in any SIM I want.

          1. RAMChYLD

            Re: FFS

            I think he was referring to this:

            Well, Samsung has lost my respect after this move. Move out of Europe and you're boned. Which, IMO, is just stupid.

        2. Bloakey1

          Re: FFS

          I have a secondary Android that has accepted Russian, Abu Dhabi, Iraq and various other forms of SIM. It is currently running on a Portuguese SIM.

          I get sick and tired of all this rubbish. It is all horses for courses. When I look around me I have IOS6, Android and cheap disposable Nokias as phones. On my desktop I have Macs {various versions of OSX}, Linux, Win 7 and Win 8 (8 as tester for custom apps and databases).

          I chose my horse for the job in hand, I also cut my cloth accordingly.

          Lets leave out the religion and realise we live in a big chateau with many rooms.

          I would like to say however that Sainsbury, Tesco and Asda are rubbish yet Pound Land rocks ;)

      2. FIA Silver badge

        Re: FFS

        "Serves them f'ing right for choosing to use Apple or MS rather than a freedomware option where they can play to their hearts' content."

        I don't think freedom and choice mean quite what you think they mean.

    5. David Shaw

      no you can't revert

      because Apple have stopped signing the iOS 6.1.4 ipsw bundle, just a few days after releasing iOS7.0

      you CAN download the old firmwares here

      but at present you can't run it.

  2. James 51

    Title is too long.

    "Some dyed-in-the-wool Apple fans have been grumbling about the new design of iOS 7, complaining about its saccharine colour scheme, unfamiliar new processes and redesigned icons."

    They're just looking at it wrong.

    1. Pete 2 Silver badge

      Re: Title is too long.

      > its saccharine colour scheme

      Does that refer to the (yellowish) colour #FBBE18, or the artificial sweetness?

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Title is too long.

      They are just annoyed that they could have got a better version of the same UI, and a better camera for less if they had bought a Nokia Lumia instead....

      1. ian 22

        Re: Title is too long.

        Do you think that this situation absolutely requires a really futile and stupid gesture?

        When does the alcoholiday begin?

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Can you jailbreak it yet?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Ouch.

      And this is likely to be the next instalment of this Saga. Apple have gone to great lengths to block going back. Why do that, unless you plan on eliminating jailbreaking...

      1. nexsphil

        "eliminating" jailbreaking

        They've been planning on eliminating jailbreaking since jailbreaking. No joy yet, and I doubt they'll ever truly get rid of it.

  4. jeremyjh

    It's fine.

    Eventually, they'll get over the shock of the change and realise that it's all new and shiny.

  5. Ian McNee

    Yeah but... least the fashion victims will now have a waterproof iDevice.


    1. Cliff

      Re: Yeah but...

      In fairness it's not waterproof, just very clever in that when it detects the moisture, it shuts down the hydrosensitive components. Now that *is* clever.

      1. Ian McNee

        Re: Yeah but...that would be clever...

        ...IF it were true. But it's not. It was a joke and a few dim fanbois believed it. And bricked their phones.

        Anything else Cliff?

        1. Jack Faust meets Mephistopheles

          Re: Yeah but...that would be clever...

          Downvoted for truth, well I've never seen such a thing on El Reg before....

        2. Cliff

          Re: Yeah but...that would be clever...

          >>Anything else Cliff<<

          Luckily I can tell when people are joking, and I trust other members here are smart enough to do likewise.

          In error, maybe?

        3. Squidgell

          Re: Yeah but...that would be clever...

          >It was a joke and a few dim fanbois believed it. And bricked their phones.

          Were the many too slow to get it?

      2. Chris Byers

        Re: Yeah but...

        Unless it's raining and you're trying to call a cab.

  6. Annihilator Silver badge


    This has been standard iOS behaviour since the iPhone 4, no? Everything after the 3GS required a jailbreak in order to go backwards.

    Doesn't surprise me much though - PSP and PS3 exhibit this behaviour too.

    1. Test Man

      Re: News?

      Yep, this is a non-story.

      All firmware upgrades have had the Apple digital signature taken off after the new one has been released. Obviously you could go back to IOS6.1.4 when the betas were out because IOS6.1.4 was still the official version, therefore still signed.

      1. P. Lee

        Re: News?

        The issue is the large change to the user experience which isn't considered a good one by many users. Had they offered the option to keep the old icon set, there would be fewer complaints.

        "the fastest upgrade in history" is little to crow about when there is no option to undo an accidental or unwanted upgrade and there is no convenient "try before you buy."

        The apple icons are distinctive - I doubt brand is the issue. I suspect the real reason to prevent going back is that each upgrade makes the older harder less usable, driving further new hardware purchases.

        1. Test Man

          Re: News?

          Brand was never the issue, considering Apple have not let you go back for quite a few versions now. The actual reason is because they don't want to keep on signing older versions as it facilitated jailbreaks.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: News?

          Makes the older harder (sic) less usable? I don't know about 7.0, but many people reported that the 3gs became faster when 6.x was installed on it.

          Apple haters always see everything they do as a ploy to sell more hardware, because they don't like the fact that people who like their products choose to buy them. They're so narrow-minded they think the conclusion they reach about Apple vs. Android is the only possible one, and anyone who thinks differently must be getting tricked into making the purchase somehow.

          1. Philip Lewis

            Re: News?

            "I don't know about 7.0, but many people reported that the 3gs became faster when 6.x was installed on it."

            Ars Technica reported the improved performance characteristics of 6,x on a 3GS very clearly - with measurements to prove it. My personal experience matched this.

            The same crowd (AT) report significant battery use issues with the iPhone5 when upgrading to iOS7. I suspect iOS7 would run on any hardware from 3GS onwards, but Apple marketing seems to be that phones will "drop off" the supported list with each new iPhone generation.

    2. Squidgell

      Re: News?

      >Everything after the 3GS required a jailbreak in order to go backwards.

      >Doesn't surprise me much though - PSP and PS3 exhibit this behaviour too.

      If Apple had been more open about it being a sort of games console, fair enough, but that's not how they want it to be seen, is it?

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    The Apple Philosophy

    A nice juicy fresh carrot, that comes with a BIG stick.

    1. MrDamage Silver badge

      Re: The Apple Philosophy

      More like a nice BIG juicy carrot, that comes with a jar of lube.

  8. g e

    At least if your old colour TV looked like iOS7...

    You could mend it with a quick degauss.

  9. Shagbag

    Peak Apple

    I guess some people always have to have something to complain about.

    Not owning (nor desiring to own) an iPhone, I can't see what all the fuss is about.

    They sold themselves to Apple when they entered the walled garden and started to invest in iOS.

    Apple pwns them. Apple can do what it likes with them. Peak Apple.

    1. JDX Gold badge

      Re: Peak Apple

      You realise you can't just stick "peak apple" in a paragraph and expect it to mean anything.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    "The latest operating system accounted for about about half of all American iOS web traffic just one week after its launch" As would windows 8 if MS gave it away for free, but for some reason they think the steaming POS is something worth buying!

    Interestingly with this release, Apple seem to have learnt the MS trick of throwing half of what their users know and understand of the OS in the bin.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: mmm...

      > "As would windows 8 if MS gave it away for free,"

      I seriously doubt that.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: mmm...

      "Interestingly with this release, Apple seem to have learnt the MS trick of throwing half of what their users know and understand of the OS in the bin."

      A patently ridiculous statement

      1. Steven Raith

        Re: mmm...

        Quite right.

        iOS 7 isn't that different.

        IGMC - it's the one with the Nexus 4 in the pocket.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Even developers are warned not to revert back. The brave can do it, but Apple says not too and says you can't.

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Stupidly updated to this on my old iPad2... what a farce. Looks like some kids tablet now.

    What is the point of the moving paralax effect? Turned it off. The window in/out animation is now slow (on an iPad2 at least)

    the "control centre" is pathetic. A little pull up slide with 'fashionable' minimalistic icons to turn on/off a couple of functions and adjust the volume and brightness. turned that off 'cause I kept pulling it up by mistake.

    The icons and colours look like pre-school. The standard apps have been given a 'simplified' effect for the sake of it and look like crap, plain, dull and lifeless.

    Any chance of the old icons and look, could do it with a simple theme... oh, of course, Apple doesn't even support themes does it...

    1. KeithSloan

      Well I have yet to upgrade on my iPad2, but all app updates have the new style of icons, so you are probably no worse off. I agree they should have offered a choice of either new or old style icons, but hey they are Apple and they would like to think they know best. Me I will not be updating to iOS7 till something forces me to.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      If you hate the control center, why the hell did you install it in the first place? Its the only good point of the whole thing.

      Personally, I installed it because I wanted the control center, because I wanted to be able to turn bluetooth and wifi on and off without dropping out of my current app and digging through settings, which I need to do a lot, and I wanted that so urgently I'm willing to put up with everything else (at least until a jailbreak for it comes out, and I can revert the rest of the bullshit). I'm running an iPad 4, though, so the performance isn't an issue.

      But to get back to you for a moment, seriously, WTF? Did you not research it beforehand? Because if you put on the upgrade blind, after the iOS6 apple maps fiasco, you're a moron who deserves everything he gets.

      1. JDX Gold badge

        If you hate the control center, why the hell did you install it in the first place?

        Because you're going to have to eventually, so you might as well get it over with.

    3. Pascal Monett Silver badge

      Re: The icons and colours look like pre-school

      Haven't you heard ? Pre-school is the new future. It's hip and trendy. Everybody likes it !

      Well, except people who actually need to work, of course, but who cares about their opinion, eh ? Work is sooo not hip.

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Are the reg writers having some kind of competition to see who can use the word saccharine the most or what? We've had it every day since Tuesday (so I can see from the search)

    It's like reading a book when the author insists on using the same rare adjective over and over again

    1. Don Jefe

      Re: Saccharine

      As near as I can tell, is responsible for spreading this word into the current fashionable lexicon. For better or worse, that site has quite a bit of impact on trends and words and they've been using this one heavily for a long while now.

    2. Irony Deficient Silver badge


      Anonymous Coward of 16:03 GMT, three decades after having read it, the unconscionable frequency of the adjective “ephemeral” in Kinross’ The Ottoman Centuries remains that book’s greatest impression on me. (The recent saccharine uptake by El Reg comes nowhere close.)

    3. twebeast

      Re: Saccharine

      using xylitol or stevia instead, wouldn't really paint the same picture. Saccharine is a sort of taste version of an onomatopoeia. Not that I have synesthesia... so I could be technically wrong.

  14. Matt_payne666

    Why would you want to revert?

    iOS 7 is more perfect than its perfect predecessors.............

  15. Bill M

    I like iOS 7

    I like iOs 7, which is running on my iPhone.


    1. sabroni Silver badge

      Re: I like iOS 7

      Isn't it lovely to have a bit of positivity on this site for once!!

  16. Richard 22

    Luddite here

    Still on iOS5 on my iPad2. Working much the same as it ever did. The iPad is used much more by my 3 year-old than by me (I much prefer Android to iOS), so maybe I should update to iOS7 since it looks like that's the demographic they had in mind with the redesign.

    1. asdf

      Re: Luddite here

      Me too (as well as it being mostly for my teen girl). iOS 5 didn't have the broken maps and is easily jailbroke. Really have to give me a good reason to upgrade and with Apple racing to not allow newer versions of iOS on older products its will probably be moot soon anyway (no iOS 6 for iPAD 1 when only two years old at the time).

  17. Stilted Banter


    "reverting back", agh

  18. Slap

    I quite like iOS 7, but I'm still annoyed.

    To be honest I'm not having any real problems with iOS 7, in the same way I wasn't having any real problems with 6.1.3. Both my ancient iPad 2 and iPhone 4S seem to have coped with the upgrade quite well, assuming that bricking my iPad and totally refusing to install until I commented an entry out in my hosts file is coping quite well. Things are still fluid, no noticeable delay when typing. Battery life seems to have gone down just a touch on the 4S with my morning tethering on the train taking 8 or 9% of the battery as opposed to the previous 5 or 6% on 6.1.3.

    I like the new control centre, but it's not as complete as it could be. Also the new task switching method (I'll never describe iOS as true multitasking) is much much better than the previous system.

    All things considered I'm happy with iOS 7. With Apple and new OS releases it's always the case that the new features don't interest me as much as the features that they've dropped, and there doesn't seem to be much dropped in this release. There have been some problems and niggles, but nothing major, and nothing one wouldn't expect form a point zero software release.

    However, it does irritate the shit out of me that I cannot restore to a previous system should I find something that's a deal breaker. This is typical Apple arrogance, and it pisses me off immensely.

    1. Don Jefe

      Re: I quite like iOS 7, but I'm still annoyed.

      Genuinely curious; how would one do true multitasking on a tiny screen anyway?

      1. Slap

        Re: I quite like iOS 7, but I'm still annoyed.

        It's more to do with the computer/device doing the multitasking, not you.

  19. stizzleswick

    Wonder why I can still revert my iPhone 4... works settings, i.e., iOS 5? Thought the article said that can't be done any longer?

  20. Hagglefoot

    Pure arrogance

    1. JDX Gold badge

      Pure not wanting to support older versions of the OS.

  21. Chad H.

    Um didn't I read this story 5 years ago about the first major iOS update?

  22. bigtimehustler

    Anybody who has every jailbroken an iPhone knows you can go back, if you plan for the possibility to go back first. You can save your signing key and then install an application on your computer that answers itunes rather than the real apple server and gives it your old key, thereby allowing you to install the old version again.

    You just have to plan for the roll back before.

  23. Alan Denman

    The experience is nicer.....

    We have the no going back way of making it so.

    This way there is no point in moaning so everyone just makes the best of a sometimes bad lot.

    Anyway, those who hated IOS 6 the most got to drive off cliffs and into aeroplanes.

  24. Nanners


    If you are new to this, or didn't expect it... welcome to the wonderfully enclosed world of apple. Where you will need to keep shelling out every three years for a new product that won't make you pull your hair out just trying to do the most basic and mundane functions. It's the price you pay for a product that actually works... until someone is smart enough to bust a new OS on the scene that is worth the effort.... hint, hint... it's time smart people. The market is RIPE for a new OS.

  25. The Vociferous Time Waster

    News flash!

    It's only a phone. Enjoy your weekend.

  26. TheDysk

    Quote: 'However, this doesn't seem to have affected the success of the latest operating system, which Apple claimed was the "fastest software upgrade in history".'

    Public Relations at it's fastest spin.

    Having an operating system that is the 'fastest software upgrade in history' does not make it a success. It just means lots of people clicked the button to upgrade when the Phone/iTunes told them there was update to the operating system.

  27. Tom 13

    Re: complaining about its saccharine colour scheme, unfamiliar new processes and redesigned icons.

    So Ballmer really WAS stealing the new iPhone interface.

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