My iPhone 5 64GB 6.1.2 has a malfunctioning camera sensor so I'm getting a warranty replacement. However I badly want to avoid iOS 7. Presumably, any refurbished iPhone 5's at this point (December 2013) are all going to have iOS 7. Since my phone has never had iOS 7 and all my backups are 6.1.2, is there going to be any way for me to restore my backup onto my new (replacement) phone EXACTLY as it was? (The ultimate goal is for it to feel as though the whole thing never happened).

Since the 64GB model is quite rare, is it possible their old stock still has iOS 6?

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    No, it'll come with iOS 7, and you'll be stuck there. – Andrew Larsson Dec 10 '13 at 16:25
  • The backup is only your data - not the OS. I agree, I am sure you will get an iOS 7 device. You wouldn't surprise me if, a few weeks into using iOS 7, you told me you couldn't imagine going back to iOS 6. – bassplayer7 Dec 10 '13 at 16:30

It's possible that a refurbished iPhone could run with iOS 6, but it's an extremely slim chance, so I wouldn't count on it. If you do end up getting iOS 7 on your iPhone, there really isn't a way to downgrade to iOS 6 without jailbreaking.

Eventually however, you will have to "swallow the pill" and use iOS 7 (or whatever future update that comes out).

  • Incredibly, the replacement indeed had iOS 6.1.4! Hurray! I'm so happy! – Syclone0044 Feb 9 '14 at 3:28

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