Changing an iPhone to a New Owner

by Anthony Oster
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images News/Getty Images

Unlike other smartphones, iPhones are linked to a unique Apple ID that is created upon activating your phone. The Apple ID is used to link purchases, payment information, contacts and file permissions to a specific phone. Whether you have purchased a used iPhone or are considering selling your old phone after you upgrade, you must first restore your iPhone to its original factory settings before adding a new owner.

Step 1

Download and install the most recent version of iTunes (see the link in Resources).

Step 2

Connect your iPhone to the computer using the USB Sync & Charge cable. Once connected, iTunes will launch and display your phone in the Devices column.

Step 3

Locate your iPhone in the list of devices on iTunes and click on it to select the device. Select the "Summary" tab and click "Restore." Agree to the confirmation prompt by clicking "Restore and Update" from the prompt window. Do not disconnect the iPhone from your computer until the restoration is complete.

Disconnect your iPhone after the restoration is complete and shut down iTunes. The Setup Assistant will launch the next time your iPhone is connected to a computer with iTunes installed on it. The new user can input his Apple ID and other relevant information when prompted by the Setup Assistant.


  • Restoring your iPhone to factory settings will erase all data saved to it.


  • Sync your iPhone to your iTunes account to save your contacts, photos and purchases prior to restoring the phone to its factory settings.


Photo Credits

  • Justin Sullivan/Getty Images News/Getty Images

About the Author

Anthony Oster is a licensed professional counselor who earned his Master of Science in counseling psychology at the University of Southern Mississippi. He has served as a writer and lead video editor for a small, South Louisiana-based video production company since 2007. Oster is the co-owner of a professional photography business and advises the owner on hardware and software acquisitions for the company.

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