There have been an increasing number of users experiencing an iOS 7 activation error when attempting to upgrade. These are often caused by running an older beta version of iOS 7, notably iOS 7 beta 6, and can be fixed in a few easy steps. Follow along and in time, you’ll bypass those pesky activation errors that have been preventing you from upgrading to iOS 7.

iOS 7 activation error

Before we start, you’ll want to upgrade to the latest version of iTunes, currently sitting at version 11.1.1. . You can download directly from Apple or select ‘Check for updates’ from within iTunes. Before you proceed, you’ll want to confirm that your device has been backed up, either to iTunes, iCloud or both. I tend to heir on the side of caution, disabling iCloud after a backup and initiating a backup to iTunes.

Turn Off Find My iPhone

In order to restore your iPhone to iOS 7, you need to turn off Find My iPhone on your iPhone. You can turn this off by going to Settings > iCloud > Find My iPhone. If you no longer have access, you’ll need to do this via iCloud.com.

Remove from Find My iPhone

  1. Press and hold the power button. Slide to power down your iPhone.
  2. Visit iCloud.com and enter your Apple ID username and password
  3. Click on Find My iPhone
  4. Select your iPhone. It should have a black circle next to it indicating it is offline
  5. Select Remove from Account
  6. Confirm by selecting ‘Remove’

Download the appropriate files from Apple for your iOS device from these download links.

Restore to iOS 7

  1. Connect your iPhone to your Mac/PC using the provided USB cable.
  2. Select your iPhone in the left hand column within iTunes
  3. On a Mac, hold the option key while selecting ‘Restore iPhone’. On a PC, press the shift key while selecting ‘Restore iPhone’.
  4. You’ll be prompted to select the iOS 7 restore file. This is the same file you’ve downloaded, so point iTunes to that file.
  5. The update should now start and complete within a matter of minutes.

Restore iPhone to iOS 7

One you have successfully restored your iPhone to iOS 7.0.2, your activation errors should be gone and you can safely restore from a previous backup. You’ll also want to go to Settings > iCloud > Find My iPhone and turn it back on.