Restoring to an older iPhone?

Discussion in 'iPhone Tips, Help and Troubleshooting' started by jent, Nov 16, 2011.

  1. jent macrumors 6502a


    Mar 31, 2010
    I have a factory-unlocked iPhone 4 and I really enjoy it. I travel fairly frequently, and I'm thinking of using my AT&T upgrade to get a factory-locked iPhone 4S.

    For future trips abroad, I was wondering how the process would be of using my iPhone 4. Can I restore an iPhone 4S backup to an iPhone 4? If so, would it be wonky?
  2. DirtySocks85 macrumors 65816


    Mar 12, 2009
    Wichita, KS
    While I've never tried this exact situation explicitly, I'm fairly certain that Apple does a few things to safeguard it from getting "wonky". My guess is that if iTunes allows it, it should be fine. Remember, worst case scenario is that it does get a bit wonky and you just have to restore the iPhone 4, which if you have a backup of the iPhone 4 as it currently is, shouldn't be a problem.
  3. sanford macrumors 65816

    Jan 5, 2003
    Dallas, USA
    I can do you one better than a 4S->4 restore, with direct experience. My iPhone 4 was stolen a few weeks before the 4S was available, so rather than immediately replace the 4, I waited and bought a 4S. In the interim I switched back to my old, spare, give-to-kids-later 3GS. I had to drop by an AT&T store and get a new SIM for the 3GS, though that won't be a problem for you since your 4 is unlocked, and you haven't had to deactivate it due to theft. Went home, restored my 3GS from my latest, very recent iPhone 4 backup. Only thing I noticed was the LED camera flash flashlight app I had didn't copy over to the 3GS, because, of course, the 3GS has no LED camera flash. And it even warned me about that.

    My experience: very safe, no wonky. Just do a sync AND a backup right before the restore (right after would be a good idea, too), so you don't drop a couple texts or whatever you thought you'd never need but find out later that you do.

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