The Cupertino-based corporation has just closed the signing window for the previous iOS 15.2.1 firmware, which was released to the general public last week with critical bug fixes and improvements for iPhone and iPad users alike.
Apple has effectively modified its servers to block requests to downgrade or restore to a certain version of iOS or iPadOS when it stops signing it. As a result, when users attempt to do so, Finder (on macOS) or iTunes (on Windows) would display an error notice.
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Apple no longer signing iOS 15.2.1 downgrades from iOS 15.3
While the majority of iPhone and iPad owners eagerly download and install new software upgrades on the first day, this isn’t the case for everyone, especially jailbreakers. As a result, jailbreakers are more inclined to restore or downgrade to previous firmware versions, which are more exposed to exploits utilized by jailbreak tools.
It’s no surprise that Apple works so hard to prevent customers from downgrading or restoring to jailbreakable versions of iOS or iPadOS 15.3, given the more than decade-long cat-and-mouse game between Apple and the jailbreak community.
It’s worth noting, though, that even non-jailbreakers occasionally feel compelled to reinstall older versions of iOS or iPadOS, particularly when an upgrade brings problems that break something that the user would otherwise value. For example, iOS 14.7 destroyed the ability to use an iPhone’s Touch ID identification to unlock linked Apple Watches, while iOS & iPadOS 13.2 imposed overly-aggressive program backgrounding control.
Apple benefits from restricting installations and restorations to older firmware not only because it prevents potential jailbreakers from realizing their ambitions; it also allows the business to brag to shareholders about new firmware adoption during Keynote presentations. Furthermore, Apple is able to keep consumers under the protective canopy of security fixes.
Whether you like it or not, Apple’s firmware un-signing shenanigans appear to be here to stay, which is why we constantly advise potential jailbreakers to stay on the newest firmware and avoid updates at all costs. When an exploit for the firmware you’re using is released, this helps confirm your jailbreak eligibility.
As always, you may use the IPSW.me website to see what version(s) of iOS or iPadOS are being signed for your device. You can now use our dedicated Downloads page for any iPhone or iPad firmware files you may require.
Are you disappointed that Apple is no longer signing iOS 15.2.1? Let us know what you think in the comments area below.