What to do when your iOS backup is newer than your iPhone’s OS

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What to do when your iOS backup is newer than your iPhone's OS
Running an iOS beta can cause problems when you get a new device.
Photo: Ed Hardy/Cult of Mac

Everyone in Apple’s beta program is running a pre-release version of the next iOS version. Which is great, until you get a new iPhone or iPad. Then you can’t restore the new device from the backup made on your previous one because the old device is running a newer OS.

If you find yourself in this situation, don’t panic — there are a couple of possible solutions. We’ll walk you through both.

Latest iOS 14 beta is stable enough for almost anyone [Opinion]

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iOS 14 beta 8 might be the last beta before Golden Master.
The pre-release versions of iOS 14, and the iPad equivalent, are really quite stable.
Photo: Ed Hardy/Cult of Mac

Apple unveiled iOS 14 back in June, and it’s chock-full of new features. The long wait for the software’s release must be wearing on many iPhone users. But Apple is almost finished development, to the point where the latest iOS 14 beta is almost as stable as the final version will be. Anyone tired of waiting would be relatively safe installing it.

The same goes for iPadOS 14.

Apple drops first public iPadOS and iOS 13.4.5 bug-fix betas

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Even the best iPads have bugs
iPadOS and iOS 13.4.5 are all about killing bugs. The public can now beta test this upcoming version.
Photo: Cult of Mac/Pexels CC

More than developers can test iOS 13.4.5 and the iPad equivalent. Starting Thursday, the general public can download a beta version if they’re brave enough to run pre-release software.

Just be aware, these updates are almost entirely about fixing bugs in the iOS and iPadOS versions released March 24, not new features.

Major mouse improvements available in iPadOS and iOS 13.4 golden master

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iPadOS 13.4 is headed for iPad Pro and other tablets
Why wait? You can grab iPadOS 13.4 golden master now. Or iOS 13.4 golden master for your iPhone.
Photo: Cult of Mac

The final version of iPadOS 13.4 was just released to anyone who joins Apple’s public beta program. This is a big upgrade for iPad users, adding robust mouse support and other improvements.

The same goes for iOS 13.4 golden master, which brings iCloud folder sharing to iPhones.

Now everyone can try iCloud folder sharing

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iCloud folder sharing is in iPadOS 13.4 and iOS 13.4
iCloud folder sharing finally arrives in iPadOS 13.4, and iOS 13.4 too.
Photo: Ed Hardy/Cult of Mac

The wait is over for iCloud folder sharing… at least for everyone willing to install the initial iOS 13.4 public beta or its iPad equivalent. And there’s new Memoji stickers, tablet users can remap some keys, plus some other new features to experiment with.

New iOS 13 beta makes Dark Mode easy as flipping a switch

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iOS 13
There’s lots to try out in iOS 13 Public beta 5.
Screen capture: Apple

Apple just introduced a fifth beta of iOS 13 to the general public. All the really significant new features appeared in earlier betas, but this one does have a nice tweak: switching to Dark Mode takes only pushing a button.

Apple also released the closely-related iPadOS 13 Public beta 5, as did tvOS 13.

Latest macOS Catalina beta lets you dump iTunes (if you dare)

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macOS Catalina
macOS left the desert of Mojave for the island of Catalina.
Photo: Apple

Anyone who’s fed up with iTunes can put the latest pre-release version of macOS Catalina on their Mac now and start using the new Apple Music, Apple Podcast and Apple TV apps instead. Of course, today’s public beta, the fourth in the series, comes with a long list of known problems so it might not be worth the hassle.