Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Downgrading an iPhone App: Something We Never Thought Before

In the world of constant upgrades, updates and improvements, it's a race to stay ahead of the curve. But how about downgrading? Have you ever wondered if it were possible to download an older version of an app - for example, if you're not lucky or loaded enough to have the latest iPhone model, or - not that we are supporting such behavior! - if you have a jail broken or unlocked model? Well, none of the iPhone developer or user has ever spoken about this issue so far.

To find out a way, I did a little bit of experiment with the latest 1.0.3 version of the Skype app on my iPhone and tried to downgrade it to the older 1.0.2 version. It definitely took me sometime to come up with a concrete result – but finally got a breakthrough. Here is what you need to do to downgrade Skype 1.0.3 to 1.0.2 on your Mac machine:
First login to the iTunes Store with the account you used for downloading Skype.

After upgrading one of the existing apps in your iPhone when you sync the device with iTunes, it automatically sync the updated version to your computer and at the same time deletes the older version and moves it to the trash. So, to find the older version, go to the Trash folder and copy the Skype.ipa file and copy it to a new location.

3. After copying the older version, delete the updated version from the device. Tap and hold the icon on your iPhone screen until it jiggles. Then click on x and delete.

4. Next, go to your Mac machine → Music/ iTunes/ Mobile Applications → find the Skype 1.ipa file, the latest version and move the file to the Trash folder.

5. Empty the Trash folder.

6. After that copy the older version from where you saved it and move it to Music/ iTunes/ Mobile Applications.

7. By double clicking the Skype.ipa, you will get a message saying “A newer version of the application “Skype” is already in your iTunes library. Are you sure you want to replace it with the one you are moving.”

8. Click on Replace.

9. With the iPhone still connected to your Mac machine select your iPhone from under the “Devices” option → click on the application tab → find whether Skype has a check mark at the side of it → click on Apply.

10. Finally, you will find that the older version of Skype has been installed on your iPhone.

However, you must also understand that this technique doesn’t always work perfectly. But, it is definitely the best way I could find or think of. If it doesn’t work for your app, don’t get upset – simply go to the iTunes App Store and download the latest version of the app once again.

For more iPhone Reviews visit the unique iPhone App Review Blog

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  1. Thanks for this bit of information. I just downloaded a Twitterfon update and the only change I could see was ads at the top of the app. I just deleted the app from my phone (I'm guessing you have to do this before synching) and then re-synched from itunes and the old version of the program came back over.

  2. Thanks! I had the same issue as Phil. Worked great with Windows.

  3. Thanks - I just used this to downgrade the lamest (I meant to say latest) TwitterFon version which introduced ads but no features.

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