How to downgrade to iPadOS 14 after installing the iPadOS 15 beta

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How to downgrade to iPadOS 14
It's easy (albeit time-consuming) to switch back to iPadOS 14.
Image: Killian Bell/Cult of Mac

So, you’ve already installed the iPadOS 15 beta beta on your iPad and now some of your favorite apps and features are broken. Don’t worry — it’s really easy (if a little time-consuming) to revert back to iPadOS 14.

We’ll show you how.

Now that the iPadOS 15 public beta is here, there is a slightly easier and more sensible way to test out the update if you’re not a real developer. But it’s still not a great idea to update your primary devices.

iPadOS 15 remains littered with bugs and instabilities that could give you problems, while many third-party apps may not work at all after updating. If you can resist the temptation to update, do that.

But, if you’ve already updated and you now have public beta regret, you’re not stuck with iPadOS 15. It’s still possible to downgrade to iPadOS 14, and the process is relatively simple.

A word of warning

Before you downgrade, there’s one thing you should be aware of: You can restore from an archived backup once your iPad has been downgraded and you’re running iPadOS 14 again. However, if you didn’t make a backup before installing iPadOS 15, you won’t be able to recover your data — you’ll need to start from scratch.

How to downgrade to iPadOS 14

If you’re still ready to downgrade to iPadOS 14, grab a Mac and follow these steps:

  1. Open Finder on your Mac.
  2. Connect your iPad to your Mac using a Lightning cable.
  3. Put your iPad into Recovery mode:
    • On iPad models without a Home button: Press then quickly release the volume up button. Press then quickly release the volume down button. Press and hold the side button until you see the Recovery mode screen.
    • On iPad models with a Home button: Press and hold both the top or side button and the volume down button until you see the Recovery mode screen.
  4. When asked if you want to restore or update your device, click the Restore button. Your iPad will now be wiped and the latest public version of iPadOS 14 will be installed.
How to downgrade to iOS 14
Click Restore, not Update, when prompted.
Screenshot: Cult of Mac

Once the process is complete and your iPad restarts with iPadOS 14, you can either restore from a backup or set up your iPad as a new device.

Downgrading with Windows

You can also downgrade your iPad using a Windows computer. Simply follow the same steps listed above, but you’ll use the latest version of iTunes for Windows instead of Finder.