There are many iPhone users who do not have the time or the inclination to make a backup of iPhone using iTunes. Hence, this guide, providing alternate methods to recover iPhone without iTunes Backup.
Recover iPhone Without iTunes
If you had never backed up your iPhone using iTunes, you won’t be able to make use of iTunes to recover iPhone. In-fact, iTunes will not even recognize your device, which rules out all the chances of using iTunes to recover your Locked iPhone.
This leaves you with two other ways of recovering Locked iPhone. You can either Restore iPhone using Recovery Mode or use iCloud to recover your locked iPhone.
Restoring iPhone using Recovery Mode is easy, but it wipes out all the data on your iPhone. This means, you will be losing all your Contacts, Photos, Music, Apps, App Data and practically everything that you had stored on your iPhone.
However, if you had setup your iPhone to automatically Sync/Backup its data to iCloud, you should be able to recover most of your Photos, Contacts and App Data by restoring iPhone using an iCloud Backup.
If you had not setup iPhone to backup to iCloud, you can still unlock your iPhone using “Set As New device” option in iCloud. While this does unlock your iPhone, you won’t be able to recover your data.
1. Recover iPhone Using iCloud
This method works only if you have Setup Find My iPhone feature on your iPhone. As you can imagine, this restriction is designed to prevent the possibility of iCloud being used to unlock stolen iPhones.
1. Using your Mac or PC, visit iCloud.com and sign-in to your iCloud Account. Once you are in iCloud, click on the Find My iPhone icon.
2. When prompted, enter your Apple ID Password in order to Sign-in to “Find My iPhone” service. On the next screen, click on All Devices and then click on the iPhone that you want to Erase (See image below)
3. On the next screen, click on Erase iPhone option, in order to Erase all the data on your iPhone, including its Lock Screen Passcode that is keeping you out of your iPhone.
4. When prompted, enter your Apple ID password to Confirm that you do want to Erase all the Data on your iPhone.
5. Once the data on your iPhone is Erased, you will see the Hello Screen on your iPhone, prompting you to Slide to Setup your iPhone.
6. Follow the onscreen instructions to Setup your iPhone, until you reach Apps & Data Screen, providing you with different options to Restore your Locked iPhone.
7. Click on Restore from iCloud Backup option, in case you had setup iCloud Backups on your iPhone. If not, click on Setup As New iPhone option.
As mentioned above, the chances of recovering your data are brighter when you are able to choose Restore from iCloud Backup option.
2. Restore Locked iPhone Using Recovery Mode
In case you had never used iTunes or setup iPhone to backup to iCloud, you are only left with the chance of recovering Locked iPhone using Recovery Mode.
Although Recovery Mode uses iTunes, it is not necessary for you to have connected your iPhone to iTunes in order to use Recovery Mode. You can use this method, even if you had never connected your iPhone to iTunes.
1. Download the latest version of iTunes to your computer (in case you do not have iTunes on your computer).
2. Next, Launch iTunes and connect your locked iPhone to the USB port computer.
3. Next, Press and Hold the Home button (iPhone 5, 5s, 6, 6s) or Press and hold Power + Volume Down buttons (iPhone 7 and up).
Do not release the buttons when you see an Apple Logo appearing on the screen of your iPhone (See image below)
4. Keep holding the Home or Power + Volume Down buttons until you see the iTunes Logo and a Cable on the screen of your iPhone. This indicates that your iPhone has entered recovery mode and you can Release the buttons.
5. Next, you will see an iTunes Message appearing on the screen of your Computer with options to Cancel, Update, and Restore your device to Factory Default Settings.
Click on the Restore button to start the process of Restoring your iPhone to its Factory Default Settings.
Note: Your device may exit recovery mode in case iTunes takes more than 15 minutes to download the software for your device. In such a case, repeat the steps to get back to recovery mode.
6. Once the Restore process is completed, you will see the “Hello Screen” with Slide to Set Up option on your iPhone.
7. Start setting up your iPhone by following On-screen instructions, until you reach Apps and Data screen, providing you with different options to Restore Locked iPhone.
Since, you do not have an iTunes backup, tap on Set Up as New iPhone option and complete the Set up Process.
After your iPhone is setup, you will be able to access your iPhone and use it as before.